Section: Contracts and Grants with Industry
We started a new collaboration with Thales concerning the modelling and simulation of spacecraft/plasma interaction. The collaboration is the continuation of previous works performed in the project CAIMAN, at Sophia Antipolis (with S. Piperno, F. Poupaud, O. Chanrion, M. Chane-Yook). The goal is to develop the Thales code SPARCS which is designed to compute the electric potential on the spacecraft and around it. Of course, the motivation is to prevent possible failure of the spacecraft due to violent electric discharges. The current version of SPARCS, based on a back-trajectory method, is very efficient and provides an accurate computation of the potential and the distribution of charged particles on the surface. On the one hand, we try to fasten the computation by optimizing some procedures of the code and by proposing a parallel version. On the other hand, the current version of the code is specifically designed for GEO flights and our goal is to propose models and methods for treating different plasmas environments (LEO, PEO).