Open Access

A new instrument for the study of wave-particle interactions in space: One-chip Wave-Particle Interaction Analyzer

Earth, Planets and Space200961:BF03353183

DOI: 10.1186/BF03353183

Received: 2 September 2008

Accepted: 7 December 2008

Published: 27 July 2009

Abstract

Wave-particle interactions in a collisionless plasma have been analyzed in several past space science missions but direct and quantitative measurement of the interactions has not been conducted. We here introduce the Wave-Particle Interaction Analyzer (WPIA) to observe wave-particle interactions directly by calculating the inner product between the electric field of plasma waves and of plasma particles. The WPIA has four fundamental functions: waveform calibration, coordinate transformation, time correction, and interaction calculation. We demonstrate the feasibility of One-chip WPIA (O-WPIA) using a Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) as a test model for future science missions. The O-WPIA is capable of real-time processing with low power consumption. We validate the performance of the O-WPIA including determination of errors in the calibration and power consumption.

Key words

Wave-particle interaction plasma waves collisionless plasma FPGA