Physics and Astronomy
Centre for Research in Earth and Space Science (CRESS)
Office: 211 Petrie Science & Engineering Building (PSE)
Phone: (416)736-2100 ext. 33692
Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics, Planetary Physics
Theory of electrode devices in plasmas; Interactions of spacecraft and space instrumentation with plasmas, especially electrical discharges.
Orbiting satellites fly through a dilute gas of ions and electrons called a "plasma". The lighter electrons accumulate faster on the satellites' surfaces, producing a disturbed region of unbalanced electrical charge around every satellite. This unbalanced charge can produce discharges, damaging satellites and causing them to fail. For measurements taken on satellites to be accurate, this disturbance must be factored into the design of instruments and the interpretation of measurements. I create mathematical models which do just that.