Wide Throttling, High Throughput Hall Thruster for Science and Exploration Missions

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX12CE62P
Agency Tracking Number: 115498
Amount: $125,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2011
Solicitation Topic Code: S3.04
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
MA, Natick, MA, 01760-1023
DUNS: 185739591
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Lawrence Byrne
 Principal Investigator
 (508) 655-5565
Business Contact
 Judy Budny
Title: Business Official
Phone: (508) 655-5565
Email: judy@busek.com
Research Institution
In response to Topic S3.04 "Propulsion Systems," Busek proposes to develop a high throughput Hall effect thruster with a nominal peak power of 1-kW and wide throttling range in terms of both power and Isp. In Phase I, we will design the thruster, focusing on achieving a magnetic field that shields the discharge channel from ion induced erosion. Our goal is to achieve a propellant throughput of at least 100 kg per kW of input power and a system specific mass of 6 kg per kW. Numerical modeling will play an important role in the thruster design to achieve these lifetime targets. Erosion predictions will be validated by comparing model results to measurements taken in a nominal 600 W thruster during an accelerated lifetime test scheduled take place in 2011 at NASA GRC under separate funding.In Phase II, we build and test a laboratory model thruster capturing the essential magnetic field criteria. The performance, lifetime, and plume properties of the thruster will then be evaluated, and the design will be optimized. Our goal is to reach TRL 5 by the end of Phase II.The complete flight system built in Phase III will include a high power thruster, a hollow cathode, and a propellant feed system. However, the focus of this program will be the thruster.

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

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