RESEARCH ON ELECTROMAGNETIC PLASMA ACCELERATION. VOLUME I. THE DEVELOPMENT OF A CW TRAVELING WAVE ACCELERATOR FOR THE PRODUCTION OF PINCHED PLASMA-TOROIDS
Final rept. Nov 1963-Dec 1966
LITTON SYSTEMS INC BEVERLY HILLS CA SPACE SCIENCES LABS
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The development of a CW traveling wave accelerator for the production and acceleration of high-speed pinched plasma toroids is described. The accelerator is a polyphase-driven electrical system. Mercury and argon-seeded mercury were used as test gases. A comprehensive technology was developed to compensate for the inductive back-reaction of the plasma discharge on the coils producing the traveling wave field. Severe and rapid thermal overloading of the walls of the plasma channel limited the run times to a few seconds. Several types of ceramic channels were tried but the problem remained. The short run times made proper utilization of the back-reaction compensating circuits an impossibility. However, evidence of plasma acceleration was obtained and microscopic discrete ring-currents were observed in the plasma efflux. The axial Hall voltage was monitored and a maximum value of 1000 volts was recorded.
- Plasma Physics and Magnetohydrodynamics