American Society of Civil Engineers


Electrostatic Cleaning System for Removing Lunar Dust Adhering to Space Suits


by Hiroyuki Kawamoto, (corresponding author), (Professor, Dept. of Applied Mechanics and Aerospace Engineering, Waseda Univ., 3-4-1, Okubo, Shinjuku, Tokyo 169-8555, Japan. E-mail: kawa@waseda.jp) and Noritaka Hara, (Student, Dept. of Applied Mechanics and Aerospace Engineering, Waseda Univ., 3-4-1, Okubo, Shinjuku, Tokyo 169-8555, Japan.)

Journal of Aerospace Engineering, Vol. 24, No. 4, October 2011, pp. 442-444, (doi:  http://dx.doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)AS.1943-5525.0000084)

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Document type: Journal Paper
Abstract: Removing lunar dust adhering to astronaut space suits is critically important for long-term lunar exploration. We are developing an automatic cleaning system that uses electrostatic force. It employs an alternating electrostatic field that forms a barrier on the surface of fabrics. In this study, we applied single-phase rectangular voltage to parallel wire electrodes stitched into the insulating fabric of space suits. By applying mechanical vibration and operating the system in a vacuum, we realized high performance: the cleaning rate exceeded 80%. Flicking out particles smaller than 10 μm in diameter that were trapped between fibers was difficult, but this system can perform preliminary space suit cleaning and save precious time for astronauts on the moon.


ASCE Subject Headings:
Aerospace engineering
Dynamics
Particles
Electrical equipment
Soils
Space exploration

Author Keywords:
Aerospace engineering
Dynamics
Particles
Electrical equipment
Soils
Space exploration