Application of thin foils in low-energy neutral-atom detection

Herbert O. Funsten, David J. McComas, B. L. Barraclough

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

7 Scopus citations


Magnetospheric imaging has been proposed using remote detection of low energy neutral atoms (LENAs) of magnetospheric origin. In the detector, LENAs can be removed from the immense ambient UV by charge state modification (ionization) using a carbon stripping foil and can be subsequently deflected into an E/q analysis section. The LENA detector efficiency is linearly proportional to the ionization probability of neutrals as they transit the foil. In this study, we present equilibrium charge state and scatter distributions for 1 - 30 keV atomic hydrogen and oxygen transiting nominal 0.5 μg cm-2 carbon foils. The fraction of hydrogen exiting a foil as H+ ranges from approximately 5% at 1 keV to 41% at 30 keV. The fraction of oxygen exiting the foil as O+ ranges from approximately 2% at 10 keV to 8% at 30 keV. Results obtained after coating the exit surface of foils with either aluminum (which forms aluminum oxide when exposed to air) or gold suggest that the intended alteration of the exit surface chemistry has no effect on the charge state distributions due to foil contamination from exposure to air. Scattering that results from the projectile-foil interaction is shown to be independent of the charge state distribution, illustrating the distinctly different interaction mechanisms associated with charge exchange and scattering.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
PublisherPubl by Int Soc for Optical Engineering
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)0819409170
StatePublished - 1992
Externally publishedYes
EventInstrumentation for Magnetospheric Imagery - San Diego, CA, USA
Duration: Jul 19 1992Jul 19 1992

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X


ConferenceInstrumentation for Magnetospheric Imagery
CitySan Diego, CA, USA

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Application of thin foils in low-energy neutral-atom detection'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this