Accession Number : ADA331723

Title :   Anode Current Attachment in Collisional Plasmas

Descriptive Note : Final rept.

Corporate Author : BOEING INFORMATION SPACE AND DEFENSE SYSTEMS KENT WA RESEARCH AND TECHNOLOGY DIV

Personal Author(s) : Butler, G. W.

PDF Url : ADA331723

Report Date : 23 OCT 1997

Pagination or Media Count : 19

Abstract : Improvements in arcjet performance are primarily limited by the anode's ability to process the energy densities associated with arc attachment. The motivation for this work was our lack of understanding of these processes. The more global objective was to develop an understanding of arc attachment physics and energy transfer to anode surfaces in collisional plasmas. A numerical multifluid approach was formulated to investigate the behavior of the plasma at an anode surface, taking into account the motion and interaction of electron, ion, and neutral fields with the solid conducting boundary. Attempts to validate the numerical algorithm have not yet proven successful. Two different approaches have been explored, but both have demonstrated numerically divergent solutions. Without the clear demonstration of success, efforts to compare with experimental data have been postponed. Continued work with this numerical approach will generate a physical correct and correlated approach to estimating the thermal loading due to the attachment of high intensity, high velocity arcs at near-atmospheric pressures. The results of this effort could not only be used to design arcjet electrodes, but also other high current devices, such as plasma switches and relays.

Descriptors :   *ARC JET ENGINES, *ANODES, PLASMAS(PHYSICS), ENERGY TRANSFER, NUMERICAL METHODS AND PROCEDURES, ELECTRIC ARCS, PARTICLE COLLISIONS.

Subject Categories : Plasma Physics and Magnetohydrodynamics
      Electric and Ion Propulsion

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE