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Proceedings Paper

Analysis Of A Used Pair Of Arcjet Electrodes
Author(s): Thomas J Pivirotto; W D Deininger
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Paper Abstract

The anode and cathode of a 30-kW class arcjet engine have been sectioned and analyzed. This arcjet was operated for a total time of 573 hours at power levels between 25 and 30 kW with ammonia at flow rates of 0.25 and 0.27 gm/s. The accumulated run time was sufficient to clearly establish erosion patterns and their causes. The type of electron emission from various parts of the cathode surface was made clear by Scanning Electron Microscope analysis. A Scanning Electron Microscope was used to study recrystallization on the hot anode surface. These electrodes were made of 2% thoriated tungsten and the surface thorium content and grad-ient perpendicular to the surfaces was determined by quantitative microprobe analysis. The results of this material analysis on the electrodes and recommendations for improving electrode operational life time are presented.

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 May 1988
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 0872, Propulsion, (9 May 1988); doi: 10.1117/12.943765
Show Author Affiliations
Thomas J Pivirotto, California Institute of Technology (United States)
W D Deininger, California Institute of Technology (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 0872:
Joseph Flanagan, Editor(s)

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