Publication details

Global plasma modeling of a magnetized high-frequency plasma source in low-pressure nitrogen and oxygen for air-breathing electric propulsion applications



Year of publication 2021
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Plasma Sources Science and Technology
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Science

Keywords plasma modeling; very low earth orbit; ECR plasma; air breathing electric propulsion; thruster
Description This work presents a global plasma model of a gridded air-breathing electric propulsion concept based on magnetized high-frequency plasma operating in the pressure range of 10(-3) Pa to 1 Pa. We illustrate that the global plasma model reproduces the experimental measurements of the extracted current over two orders of magnitude in pressure. Consequently, we use the model to investigate the theoretical scalability of the plasma source, finding that the plasma source performance scales reasonably well with the average absorbed power per molecule, even though this scaling factor has its limits. The global model presented in this work is a model of a specific laboratory device and, in future, it can be adapted to very low Earth orbit conditions by adjusting the boundary conditions. The model was implemented using PlasmaSolve p3s-globalmodel software and the configuration file containing all the equations is provided to the community as supplementary material.

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