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Preliminary thrust characterization of a T5 hollow cathode

Grubisic, A.N. and Gabriel, S.B (2007) Preliminary thrust characterization of a T5 hollow cathode At 43rd AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference & Exhibit, United States. 08 - 11 Jul 2007. 16 pp.

Record type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)


Previous testing of conventional T6 hollow cathodes has shown performance sufficient to consider displacing dual chemical/ion thruster propulsion systems with a common hollow cathode thruster (HCT)/ion thruster system. Future design optimization requires a detailed understanding of the influence of terminal parameters on all thrust generation mechanisms. As the next step in this process, this paper presents a preliminary thrust characterization of the T5 hollow cathode with argon using a pendulum thrust balance as a laser optical lever with a position sensitive photo-detector. Influence of terminal parameters such as geometry, flow rate and discharge current are discussed with respect to thrust parameters. This work identifies the possibility of using a T5 HCT as part of an all-electric propulsion system for the proposed European Student Moon Orbiter (ESMO). The all-electric spacecraft presents significant mass savings over conventional configurations while the preferable electrical characteristics of the hollow cathode discharge also make standalone thruster a candidate for micro satellite applications.

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Submitted date: 8 June 2007
Venue - Dates: 43rd AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference & Exhibit, United States, 2007-07-08 - 2007-07-11
Keywords: Hollow cathode, micro thruster, electric propulsion, plasma, ion
Organisations: Astronautics Group


Local EPrints ID: 48315
PURE UUID: e983b2b8-7bd5-40b4-8649-07ba1930b7d2

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Date deposited: 11 Sep 2007
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 15:00

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Author: A.N. Grubisic
Author: S.B Gabriel

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