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PhD Seminar, Omri Hamo: “Characterization of a very low power double stage Hall thruster using high-resolution optical and electrostatic diagnostics”

Lecturer: Omri Hamo, PhD student, under the supervision of Assoc. Prof. Joseph Lefkowitz (AE) and Dr. Dan Lev, School of AE, GIT, Atlanta

Location: Classroom 165, ground floor, Library, Aerospace Eng., February 5, 2024, 13:30

Zoom: click here

Affiliation: Department of Aerospace Engineering

Institute: Technion – Israel Institute of Technology

Seminar Language: The talk will be given in English

In the current “New Space” era, small satellites are becoming increasingly popular due to their lowlaunch cost. However, there is still a gap between the requirement for low power propulsion systemsand the available solutions. A considerable effort is devoted to downscaling the existing popular HallEffect Thruster (HET) to the low power available in small satellites. However, the efficiency of thesedevices drops dramatically with power, and significant design changes are required to allow efficientoperation. A bottleneck preventing advancement is the physics of these small HETs, which can be quitedifferent than that of classical HETs. Moreover, diagnostics of the plasma are difficult to perform due tominiature size of these thrusters.
Therefore, in this work we propose a combined approach for studying low power HETs. The spatial variation of plasma parameters in the near-field is measured using electrostatic probes and optical emission spectroscopy (OES) techniques. In particular, the ion number density, ion current density and plasma potential were measured with the probes, and the electron temperature was measured with both methods. The approach was implemented for a specific low power HET called the “Narrow Channel Hall Thruster” (NCHT) for several operating points. The electron temperature results from the different analysis approaches were compared. The validity of the OES method and the dependency in the Collisional Radiative theoretical model is discussed. The thruster behaviour and loss mechanisms in the different working points are analyzed from the obtained data.

Comments: Light refreshments will be served before the lecture