Establishment of a World-Class Facility for High-Power Electric Propulsion Research
Final technical rept. 1 Mar 92-28 Aug 98
MICHIGAN UNIV ANN ARBOR DEPT OF AEROSPACE ENGINEERING
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DURIP funds were used to purchase a state-of-the-art cryopumping system and a laser induced fluorescence LIF system utilizing two lasers a 20 W UV-capable, argon-ion pump laser used in conjunction with a ring-dye laser to enhance the vacuum and diagnostics capabilities at the University of Michigans Plasmadynamics and Electric Propulsion Laboratory PEPL. Prior to the upgrade, the 9 x 6 meter diffusion-pumped vacuum chamber at PEPL had a xenon pumping speed of 27,000 ls and could maintain a pressure of 50 microtorr during the operation of a 1.35 kW Hall thruster. The base pressure of the facility was approximately 20 microtorr. The four large nude cryopumps, used in place of the diffusion pumps, and significant leak repair work allows for a 140,000 ls xenon pumping speed, a base pressure of 20 microtorr, and a clean, oil-free test environment. The facility upgrade, and the addition of LW capability, has made PEPL one of the few world-class electric propulsion test facilities in the nation.
- Electric and Ion Propulsion