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Proceedings Paper

High-Power, NH3 Arcjet Cathode Lifetime Evaluation Experiments And Plans
Author(s): William D Deininger; Thomas J Pivirotto
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Paper Abstract

Preliminary experimental investigations were conducted to evaluate the effects of a modified cathode shape on ammonia arcjet engine performance. The experiments were conducted with a contoured nozzle arcjet in a fully-instrumented facility which included a thrust stand. The modified cathode tip had a reduced diameter and more acute conical tip with respect to the baseline cathode design. A uniform 15% decrease in arc voltage was demonstrated over a mass flow range of 0.175 to 0.350 g/s. A 4% improvement in thrust efficiency was noted at 22.0 kW. Plans for future cathode testing are discussed with the aim of developing a long-life, high-performance arcjet cathode.

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 May 1988
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 0872, Propulsion, (9 May 1988); doi: 10.1117/12.943767
Show Author Affiliations
William D Deininger, California Institute of Technology (United States)
Thomas J Pivirotto, California Institute of Technology (United States)

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

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