9-13 July 2012
Rarefied Gas Ejection as a Thrust Mechanism for Miniature Electric Space Propulsion Systems
Presented by Mr. Marinus KROMMENHOEK on 10 Jul 2012 from 17:30 to 19:30
Type: Poster Presentation
Session: Poster Session
Track: Track F - Applied Physics
We aim to model the physical mechanisms responsible for the observed thrust of a miniature electric propulsion system to be used in space applications. The thruster operates by ejecting gas through a small orifice at high electrical potential, where corona ionisation is responsible for ionisation of neutrals and subsequent acceleration of the created ions. In this context, we consider the emission of a rarefied gas from a circular orifice into vacuum which may impinge on a flat plate surface parallel to the orifice's plane some distance away from it. Such a model can provide important parameters used for a systematic description of the thrust mechanism, such as a density and temperature profile of the plume, and will facilitate a computational simulation.
Dr Phil Ferrer, Philippe.Ferrer@wits.ac.za, University of Witwatersrand