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    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    [S.l.] : American Institute of Physics (AIP)
    Review of Scientific Instruments 73 (2002), S. 2020-2027 
    ISSN: 1089-7623
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
    Notes: A compact plasma accelerator concept based on plasma production at a magnetic cusp was designed and fabricated. Plume and discharge characteristics of the device were documented using a Faraday probe and a retarding potential analyzer. The discharge current variations with increasing discharge voltage were nonlinear with the discharge current increasing rapidly with voltage. The device demonstrated the capability of generating ion beamlets (∼80 eV) with downstream peak current densities comparable to that of higher power ion thruster devices (7 mA/cm2). In general, the device appeared to operate best at very low flow rates. High propellant utilization fractions (ionization fractions) were measured below 1 SCCM of Xe flow (88% at 0.48 SCCM). Floating potential measurements made downstream of the device were used to estimate the downstream electric field. These measurements, which were used to qualitatively assess beam neutralization, indicated beam neutralization does occur downstream of the device. Based on the measurements, the compact plasma accelerator concept could potentially be used as a low energy ion source for propulsion applications or for low energy plasma/materials processing applications.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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