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Two-dimensional model of a stationary plasma thruster

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4 Author(s)
Hagelaar, G.J.M. ; Centre de Physique des Plasmas et Applications de Toulouse, Bâtiment 3R2, Université Paul Sabatier, 118 Route de Narbonne, 31062 Toulouse Cedex, France ; Bareilles, J. ; Garrigues, L. ; Boeuf, J.P.

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Stationary plasma thrusters (SPTs) are advanced propulsion devices that use a gas discharge to ionize and accelerate the propellant. We present in detail a two-dimensional model of an SPT discharge. The model combines a particle simulation of neutral atoms and ions with a fluid description of electrons, where the electric field is obtained from imposing quasineutrality. The electron mobility and energy loss are treated in an empirical way and characterized by ad hoc parameters. Typical simulation results are shown. © 2002 American Institute of Physics.

Published in:

Journal of Applied Physics  (Volume:91 ,  Issue: 9 )