A High Performance Cathode Heater for Hall Thrusters

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX09CA86C
Agency Tracking Number: 075351
Amount: $600,000.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2009
Solicitation Year: 2007
Solicitation Topic Code: S3.04
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
19501 144th Avenue NE, Suite F-500, Woodinville, WA, 98072-4423
DUNS: 015577190
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Ender Savrun
 Principal Investigator
 (425) 485-7272
Business Contact
 Karen Valdastri
Title: Business Official
Phone: (425) 485-7272
Email: karen.valdastri@siennatech.com
Research Institution
The current state-of-the-art co-axial swaged tantalum (Ta) heaters use magnesium oxide (MgO) insulators, which limits their operation to temperatures well below 1300ºC to prevent undesirable chemical reactions between Mg and Ta and heater failure. This program will develop a new ceramic insulator that is chemically compatibility with Ta and has high thermal stability at temperatures of 1300ºC-1600ºC for swaged heaters for BaO-impregnated and LaB6 hollow cathodes. In Phase I, we demonstrated the new ceramic insulators can be used in swaged Ta heaters for BaO-impregnated cathodes that operate at 1100ºC-1300ºC. In Phase II, we will further develop the new ceramic insulator for use in LaB6 hollow cathode heaters that operate at 1600ºC. We will develop an extrusion process to fabricate ceramic insulators with high dimensional tolerances at low cost and fabricate a prototype swaged coaxial heaters in collaboration with a heater manufacturer. Performance mapping and heater testing will be carried out in collaboration with an end-user aerospace company.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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