Hollow-Cathode Capillary-Discharge Pseudospark Pulsed Power Units For Integrated "On-A-Chip" Plasma Propulsion Systems Using MEMS Technology
Agency / Branch:
DOD / OSD
There is a growing demand for advanced space-based radar/sensor/imaging systems, ballistic missile defense and anti-satellite warfare capability in self-healing distributed infrastructure space networks. Miniaturization of sensor, communications and structural hardware has driven the industry, however, space power and propulsion has significantly lagged behind. Pseudospark technology has the current carrying capability of metal-vapor arcs, control and stability of glow discharges, and size/response characteristics of solid-state switching. In Phase I, Starfire Industries evaluated MEMS-scale integration of pseudospark pulsed power units for space propulsion. Starfire Industries determined there is a viable developmental pathway for a multiuse device serving on-orbit pulsed power conditioning, high power density plasma propulsion with specific impulses from 500-2000 sec and efficiencies 20-40%, spacecraft rapid charge neutralization, and impulse bit attitude control for constellation flying. This Phase II project builds on the successes of Phase I, evaluating high areal density (>100,000 per cm2) pseudospark microdischarge arrays in the laboratory, addressing the critical outstanding issues for technology commercialization, and developing a roadmap towards thrust stand demonstration.
Small Business Information at Submission:
STARFIRE INDUSTRIES, LLC
1010 W. Stoughton #203 Urbana, IL 61801
Number of Employees: