Colloid Advanced Development Program. Appendixes.
Final rept. 1 Jun 72-2 Jan 76,
TRW DEFENSE SYSTEMS GROUP REDONDO BEACHCA
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Two types of propellant storage tanks were developed. One was a self-pressurizing welded bellows, and the other was a spring assisted hydroformed bellows. Satisfactory system integration in both control modes was demonstrated through thrust stand, vacuum environment testing of the propulsion system during turn on, turn off, and steady-state thrust regulation. Life tests of 36-needle array thruster modules lasting over 4000 and 5000 hours provided measurements of long term performance change with time. Performance projections for a 10,000 hour mission based on life test data and thruster performance mapping after 2500 hours of operation indicated an average specific impulse of 1224 seconds for the mission. In addition to performance testing, system integration activities included thruster effluent compatibility, thermal characteristics, control loop dynamic response, and nuclear survivability studies. An electron beam-deflection electric field meter transducer was tested with breadboard electronics in anticipation of its use to evaluate propulsion system neutralizer effectiveness at geosynchronous altitude by determining the potential of the spacecraft with respect to its ambient plasma with the thruster on and off.
- Electric and Ion Propulsion