Secret revealed of why moon dust is sticky.

Reply Thu 23 Apr, 2009 11:24 am
Why is moon dust sticky? Physicist says he has answer

One of the biggest problems facing America's space agency as it prepares to return to the moon is how to manage lunar dust. It gets into everything. Worse, it's sticky, adhering to spacesuits and posing a potentially serious health hazard to future colonists.

Now, a scientist who has been studying the problem off and on over four decades thinks he may have untangled the mystery of why that dust is so sticky. Brian O'Brien, an Australian physicist who worked on the Apollo program in the 1960s, said the sun's ultraviolet and X-ray radiation gives a positive charge to the dust, making it stick to surfaces such as spacesuits.

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Reply Sun 31 May, 2009 08:44 am
Now our space specialists need to examine how to put that information to work for us.
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g day
Reply Thu 23 Dec, 2010 02:36 am

Actually I think its the structure of the dust is rougher than on Earth - because there is no wind to move the dust about which smooths it rough edges.

I remember seeing a documentary that looked at Moon dust under a microscope and compared it to Earth dust. The moon dust is more irregular and sharper - it sticks to things alot better and you can stack it alot higher - it sticks to itself. Earth dust is smoother and sleeker - wind causes it to bump around - erosion polishes the dust.
Reply Thu 23 Dec, 2010 04:22 am
@g day,
Now, doesn't that cast some doubt on the positive charge idea? Unless I'm missing something, if the dust is all positively charged, the grains should be repelling one another and not stack well at all.
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Reply Thu 23 Dec, 2010 04:52 am
I don't buy the stacking angle at all . . . i hadda get rid of all our moon dust because it was a nightmare to try to store it . . .
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