High Current Cathode Development

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Defense
Branch:
Air Force
Amount:
$99,961.00
Award Year:
2005
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
FA9300-05-M-3007
Agency Tracking Number:
F051-204-2463
Solicitation Year:
2005
Solicitation Topic Code:
AF05-204
Solicitation Number:
2005.1
Small Business Information
BUSEK CO., INC.
11 Tech Circle, Natick, MA, 01760
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
184629491
Principal Investigator
 Lawrence Byrne
 Research Engineer
 (508) 655-5565
 larry@busek.com
Business Contact
 Judy Budny
Title: Contracts Administrator
Phone: (508) 655-5565
Email: judy@busek.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
High power dual mode electric propulsion systems are an enabling technology for the orbit transport of DoD space assets. In the Phase I program Busek Co. will design, fabricate and test a high current center mounted cathode. The cathode will be designed to deliver electron current to a 20 kW thruster capable of both high thrust to power and high Isp operation. The proposed high current cathode will be scaled from well established hollow cathode technology, but incorporate design innovations that address challenges with discharge current scaling and lifetime requirements. In Phase I we will fabricate a prototype cathode and demonstrate high sustained current operation. Additional testing with our existing 20 kW thruster will be performed to characterize integrated performance. Our subcontractor, Boeing EDD will model the cathode design and operation using a proprietary model and make first order lifetime predictions. In Phase II, an advanced engineering model prototype will be fabricated. An extensive test program with our 20 kW thruster will be performed to verify thruster/cathode operation over the dual mode thruster operating envelope. The Hall thruster system, of which the cathode is an integral component will demonstrate the capability to exceed Phase III IHPRPT goals for electrostatic propulsion.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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