Cathode effects in cylindrical Hall thrusters

E. M. Granstedt, Y. Raitses, Nathaniel J. Fisch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Stable operation of a cylindrical Hall thruster has been achieved using a hot wire cathode, which functions as a controllable electron emission source. It is shown that as the electron emission from the cathode increases with wire heating, the discharge current increases, the plasma plume angle reduces, and the ion energy distribution function shifts toward higher energies. The observed effect of cathode electron emission on thruster parameters extends and clarifies performance improvements previously obtained for the overrun discharge current regime of the same type of thruster, but using a hollow cathode neutralizer. Once thruster discharge current saturates with wire heating, further filament heating does not affect other discharge parameters. The saturated values of thruster discharge parameters can be further enhanced by optimal placement of the cathode wire with respect to the magnetic field.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number103302
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Volume104
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 8 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Cathode effects in cylindrical Hall thrusters'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this