Numerical study of an ebeam-confined faraday accelerator

Bernard Parent, Sergey Macheret, Mikhail Shneider, Nobuhiro Harada

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The numerical solution of a MHD accelerator intended for supersonic/hypersonic airbreathing propulsion systems is presented. The numerical method solves the FANS equations closed by the Wilcox k-omega model including the nitrogen vibrational energy and a finite-rate chemical solver accounting for electron-beam ionization, electron attachment and dissociative recombination. The fluid flow equations are solved in conjunction with the electric field potential equation. Due to the recombination time of the electrons with the charged particules being in the order of microseconds, the interaction region is more or less confined to the area when e-beam ionization is applied. In this manner, a Faraday-type configuration can be obtained by using only one electrode pair. The impact of the length of the interaction region as well as the strength of the magnetic field on the efficiency is assessed. It is observed that the efficiency obtained numerically is as much as 40% less than the theoretical predictions for the highest magnetic field considered of 4 Teslas. This is attributed to (i) the current concentration near the electrodes edges causing a significant voltage drop, and (ii) unsteady behaviour in the center of the channel due to the interaction between finite rate chemistry and electromagnetism. Nonetheless, an efficiency within 25% of the theoretical predictions can be obtained by decreasing the width of the interaction region to one tenth of its height.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCollection of Technical Papers - 37th AIAA Plasmadynamics and Lasers Conference
Number of pages18
StatePublished - 2006
Event37th AIAA Plasmadynamics and Lasers Conference - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: Jun 5 2006Jun 8 2006

Publication series

NameCollection of Technical Papers - 37th AIAA Plasmadynamics and Lasers Conference


Other37th AIAA Plasmadynamics and Lasers Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, CA

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering


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