Experimental Investigations of a Krypton Stationary Plasma Thruster

Abstract : Stationary plasma thrusters are attractive electric propulsion systems for spacecrafts. The usual propellant is xenon. Among the other suggested propellants, krypton could be one of the best candidates. Most studies have been carried out with a Hall effect thruster previously designed for xenon. The ATON A-3 developed by MSTU MIREA (Moscow) initially defined for xenon has been optimized for krypton. The stable high-performance ATON A-3 operation in Kr has been achieved after optimization of its magnetic field configuration and its optimization in different parameters: length and width of the channel, buffer volume dimensions, mode of the cathode operation, and input parameters. For a voltage of 400 V and the anode mass flow rate of 2.5 mg/s the anode efficiency reaches 60% and the specific impulse reaches 2900 s under A-3 operating with Kr. The achieved performances under operation A-3 with Kr are presented and compared with performances obtained with Xe.
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International Journal of Aerospace Engineering, Hindawi Publishing Corporation, 2013, pp.686132. 〈10.1155/2013/686132〉
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A. I. Bugrova, A.M. Bishaev, A. V. Desyatskov, M.V. Kozintseva, A. S. Lipatov, et al.. Experimental Investigations of a Krypton Stationary Plasma Thruster. International Journal of Aerospace Engineering, Hindawi Publishing Corporation, 2013, pp.686132. 〈10.1155/2013/686132〉. 〈hal-01583309〉

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