The removal of lunar dust deposited on solar panels, heat radiators, and optical elements (e.g., lens and mirrors) is one of the critical issues for a long-term lunar exploration. We have developed a cleaning system to remove the deposited lunar dust using an electrostatic traveling wave. When a four-phase rectangular voltage is applied to a transparent plate consisting of circular vortical ITO (indium tin oxide) electrodes printed on a glass substrate to move the electrostatic field toward the outer direction, the lunar dust on the plate is removed outwards following the movement of the electrostatic traveling wave. In this study, the effects of pressure and temperature that simulate the lunar environment were investigated, and it was demonstrated that high performance was maintained in a harsh lunar environment. It was confirmed that the low-frequency mechanical vibration generated by the movement of a rover improves the cleaning efficiency. The actual energy consumption of this system was evaluated, and it was demonstrated to be negligible with a simple high voltage source.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering