Plasma oscillations in Hall thrusters

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The nature of oscillations in the 1 kHz-60 MHz frequency range that have been observed during operation of Hall thrusters is quantitatively discussed. Contours of various plasma parameters measured inside the accelerating channel of a typical Hall thruster are used to evaluate the various stability criteria and dispersion relations of oscillations that are suspected to occur. A band by band up-to-date overview of the oscillations is carried out with a description of their observed behavior and a discussion of their nature and dependencies through comparison of the calculated contours to reported observations. The discussion encompasses the excitation of low frequency azimuthal drift waves that can form a rotating spoke, axially propagating "transit-time" oscillations, azimuthal drift waves, ionization instability-type waves, and wave emission peculiar to weakly ionized inhomogeneous plasmas in crossed electric and magnetic fields.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1411-1426
Number of pages16
JournalPhysics of Plasmas
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2001

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics


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