APPLIED RESEARCH ON CONTACT IONIZATION THRUSTER. VOLUME II. MISSION ANALYSES.
Final rept. Mar 63-Mar 64,
ELECTRO-OPTICAL SYSTEMS INC PASADENA CALIF
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Possible early applications of ion thrusters were investigated to give direction to the advancing technology in thrusters and associated power conditioning, control and feed systems. Approximate methods of calculating performance and first order space flight mechanics have general application to a wide variety of low-thrust studies. An exhaustive survey of thrusting modes was performed using the new techniques. Missions using solar-electric power and nuclear-electric power were considered. It was concluded that the most attractive application for solar-electric rockets is the 24hour satellite. For the nuclear-electric rocket an advanced orbital space station, a group of unmanned probes, and all manned missions beyond the moon are highly competitive. Author