Category Archive: Publications

Jul 14

Experimental Study of the Effects of the Cathode Position and the Electrical Circuit Configuration on the Operation of HK40 Hall Thruster and BUSTLab Hollow Cathode

HK40 Hall thruster, designed and developed at the Bogazici University Space Technologies Laboratory (BUSTLab), is an SPT type Hall thruster with a 40 mm discharge channel. HK40 was initially designed to operate with SmCo permanent magnets. To optimize the magnetic field topology, the permanent magnets were replaced with iron-core electromagnets. The thruster is operated with …

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Jul 14

Experimental Investigation of the Effects of Cathode Current on HK40 Hall Thruster Operation

Hall effect thrusters utilize electric and magnetic fields to extract ions from a plasma discharge. The cathode is responsible for the ionization of the propellant and the neutralization of the ion beam by emitting an equal number of electrons to prevent spacecraft charging. Hollow cathode electrons are extracted from LaB6 insert surface by thermionic emission. …

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Jul 14

Investigation of the Effect of Hollow Cathode Neutralizer Location on Hall Effect Thruster Efficiency

Neutralization of ions is important for all electric thruster types when considering thruster efficiency and life. Hollow cathode is responsible for both creating plasma discharge and neutralization of the beam ions for Hall Effect Thruster (HET). In this study, appropriate placement of the cathode is investigated by taking into account that the decrease in cathode …

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Jul 14

Note: Coaxial-heater hollow cathode

The design and tests of a LaB6 hollow cathode with a novel heater are presented. In the new design, the heater wire is completely encapsulated around the cathode tube and a coaxial return electrode, thereby eliminating hot spots on the heater wire due to the free hanging regions. Since the new heater confines the Joule …

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Jul 14

Thermal Analysis and Testing of Different Designs of Lanthanum Hexaboride Hollow Cathodes

Electric propulsion systems provide a higher delta-V for the same mass of propellant when compared to chemical propulsion systems due to their higher Isp levels. Many electric propulsion systems utilize cathodes as electron source. Hollow cathodes generate electron current through thermionic emission mechanism. In this study conventional hollow cathode designs are investigated numerically and experimentally. …

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Jul 14

Development of the New BUSTLab Hall Thruster with Internal Coaxial Hollow Cathode

HK40 Hall thruster is a low power SPT-type Hall thruster with a boron nitride (BN) discharge channel of 40 mm in outer diameter. Based on the experience gained during the design and manufacturing of the HK40 Hall thruster, and the experiments that were conducted with this Hall thruster, an advanced larger diameter Hall thruster with …

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Jul 14

Design Improvements and Experimental Measurements of BURFIT-80 RF Ion Thruster

BURFIT-80, a prototype radio-frequency ion thruster, is designed, built and tested at the Bogazici University Space Technologies Laboratory. This paper presents the design parameters and numerous design improvements of this thruster. Three different versions of the thruster, with the same discharge chamber inner diameter of 80 mm, have been built and tested. The latest version …

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Jul 13

Study of Magnetic Field Configuration Effects on Coupling between Hall Effect Thruster and Hollow Cathode

Hall effect thrusters utilize electric and magnetic fields to extract ions from a plasma discharge. In Hall effect thrusters, the ionization of the propellant gas is achieved by collisions of the neutral propellant gas atoms with the emitted electrons from a cathode, typically a hollow cathode. Besides, the cathode is responsible for the neutralization of …

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