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Proceedings Paper

Spear: Rocket Flights To Investigate The Innovative Design Of High Power Space Systems
Author(s): D. B. Allred; J. D. Benson; H. A. Cohen
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Paper Abstract

The SPEAR I and SPEAR II sounding rocket flights, will carry the highest exposed voltage systems yet flown in space. SPEAR I was launched December 13, 1987, to investigate the electrical current drain to highly charged objects in the ionosphere. SPEAR I results, augmented with laboratory and theoretical studies, will be used to determine the ambient conditions that would cause discharging and arcing of high power systems in space. These results will then be used for the design, test and flight of high power systems. SPEAR II, scheduled for launch in early 1989, will involve the innovative operations of high voltage and high current systems in the ionosphere. These flight programs utilize theoretical research efforts of several groups, as well as vacuum and plasma chamber testing of high power systems. Innovative aspects will include the exposure of uninsu-lated transmission and pulse forming systems to the ambient plasma, the charging and use of high energy storage systems during flight, and the use of high voltage and high current loads not previously used in space. Unique problems include outgassing, mitigation of electrical breakdown, loading, and the use of innovative spacecraft integration techniques for commands and telemetry to high voltage systems.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 April 1988
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 0871, Space Structures, Power, and Power Conditioning, (6 April 1988); doi: 10.1117/12.943685
Show Author Affiliations
D. B. Allred, Defense Nuclear Agency (United States)
J. D. Benson, Strategic Defense Initiative Organization (United States)
H. A. Cohen, W. J. Schafer Associates (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 0871:
Space Structures, Power, and Power Conditioning
Raymond F. Askew, Editor(s)

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