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Sample records for advanced plasma propulsion

  1. Advanced Plasma Propulsion for Human Missions to Jupiter

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Donahue, Benjamin B.; Pearson, J. Boise

    1999-01-01

    This paper will briefly identify a promising fusion plasma power source, which when coupled with a promising electric thruster technology would provide for an efficient interplanetary transfer craft suitable to a 4 year round trip mission to the Jovian system. An advanced, nearly radiation free Inertial Electrostatic Confinement scheme for containing fusion plasma was judged as offering potential for delivering the performance and operational benefits needed for such high energy human expedition missions, without requiring heavy superconducting magnets for containment of the fusion plasma. Once the Jovian transfer stage has matched the heliocentric velocity of Jupiter, the energy requirements for excursions to its outer satellites (Callisto, Ganymede and Europa) by smaller excursion craft are not prohibitive. The overall propulsion, power and thruster system is briefly described and a preliminary vehicle mass statement is presented.

  2. Crewed Mission to Callisto Using Advanced Plasma Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adams, R. B.; Statham, G.; White, S.; Patton, B.; Thio, Y. C. F.; Alexander, R.; Fincher, S.; Polsgrove, T.; Chapman, J.; Hopkins, R.

    2003-01-01

    This paper describes the engineering of several vehicles designed for a crewed mission to the Jovian satellite Callisto. Each subsystem is discussed in detail. Mission and trajectory analysis for each mission concept is described. Crew support components are also described. Vehicles were developed using both fission powered magneto plasma dynamic (MPD) thrusters and magnetized target fusion (MTF) propulsion systems. Conclusions were drawn regarding the usefulness of these propulsion systems for crewed exploration of the outer solar system.

  3. Advanced space propulsion concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lapointe, Michael R.

    1993-01-01

    The NASA Lewis Research Center has been actively involved in the evaluation and development of advanced spacecraft propulsion. Recent program elements have included high energy density propellants, electrode less plasma thruster concepts, and low power laser propulsion technology. A robust advanced technology program is necessary to develop new, cost-effective methods of spacecraft propulsion, and to continue to push the boundaries of human knowledge and technology.

  4. Advancements in Dense Plasma Focus (DPF) for Space Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, Robert; Yang Yang; Miley, G.H.; Mead, F.B.

    2005-02-06

    The development of a dense plasma focus (DPF) propulsion device using p-11B is described. A propulsion system of this type is attractive because of its high thrust-to-weight ratio capabilities at high specific impulses. From a fuel standpoint, p-11B is advantageous because of the aneutronic nature of the reaction, which is favorable for the production of thrust since the charged particles can be channeled by a magnetic field. Different fusion mechanisms are investigated and their implication to the p-11B reaction is explored. Three main requirements must be satisfied to reach breakeven for DPF fusion: a high Ti/Te ratio ({approx}20), an order of magnitude higher pinch lifetime, and the reflection and absorption of at least 50% radiation. Moreover, a power re-circulation method with high efficiency must be available for the relatively low Q value of the DPF fusion reactor. A possible direct energy conversion scheme using magnetic field compression is discussed. DPF parameters are estimated for thrust levels of 1000 kN and 500 kN, and possible propulsion applications are discussed, along with developmental issues.

  5. Advanced Propulsion Concepts at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brophy, J. R.

    1997-01-01

    Current interest in advanced propulsion within NASA and research activities in advanced propulsion concepts at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory are reviewed. The concepts, which include high power plasma thrusters such as lithuim-fueled Lorentz-Force-Accelerators, MEMS-scale propulsion systems, in-situ propellant utilization techniques, fusion propulsion systems and methods of using antimatter, offer the potential for either significantly enhancing space transportation capability as compared with that of traditional chemical propulsion, or enabling ambitious new missions.

  6. Advanced electric propulsion and space plasma contactor research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilbur, P. J.

    1986-01-01

    A series of experiments performed on an 8 cm dia. ring cusp magnetic field ion thruster are described. The results show the effects of anode and cathode position and size, ring cusp axial location and discharge chamber length on plasma ion energy cost and extracted ion fraction. Thruster performance is shown to be improved substantially when optimum values of these parameters are used. Investigations into the basic plasma phenomena associated with the process of plasma contacting are described. The results show the process of electron collection from a background plasma to a hollow cathode plasma contactor exhibits a higher impedance than the process of electron emission from the hollow cathode. The importance of having cold ions present to facilitate the plasma contacting process is shown. Results of experiments into the behavior of hollow cathodes operating at high interelectrode pressures (up to approx. 100 Torr) on nitrogen and ammonia are presented. They suggest that diffuse emission from the insert of a hollow cathode can be sustained at high interelectrode pressures if the cathode is made of non-conducting material and the cathode internal pressure is reduced by evacuating the cathode interior. A theoretical model of discharge chamber operation developed for inert gas thrusters is extended so it can be used to evaluste the performance of mercury ion thrusters. Predictions of the model are compared to experimental results obtained on two 30 cm dia. thrusters.

  7. Advanced electric propulsion and space plasma contactor research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilbur, Paul J.

    1987-01-01

    A theory of the plasma contacting process is described and experimental results obtained using three different hollow cathode-based plasma contactors are presented. The existence of a sheath across which the bulk of the voltage drop associated with the contacting process occurs is demonstrated. Test results are shown to agree with a model of a spherical, space-charge-limited double sheath. The concept of ignited mode contactor operation is discussed, which is shown to enhance contactor efficiency when it is collecting electrons. An investigation of the potentials in the plasma plumes downstream of contactors operating at typical conditions is presented. Results of tests performed on hollow cathodes operating at high interelectrode pressures (up to about 1000 Torr) on ammonia are presented and criteria that are necessary to ensure that the cathode will operate properly in this regime are presented. These results suggest that high pressure hollow cathode operation is difficult to achieve and that special care must be taken to assure that the electron emission region remains diffuse and attached to the low work function insert. Experiments conducted to verify results obtained previously using a ring cusp ion source equipped with a moveable anode are described and test results are reported. A theoretical study of hollow cathode operation at high electron emission currents is presented. Preliminary experiments using the constrained sheath optics concept to achieve ion extraction under conditions of high beam current density, low net accelerating voltage and well columniated beamlet formation are discussed.

  8. Magnetic insulation for plasma propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gonzalez, Dora E.

    1990-01-01

    The design parameters of effective magnetic insulation for plasma engines are discussed. An experimental model used to demonstrate the process of plasma acceleration and magnetic insulation is considered which consists of a copper strap that is wound around a glass tube and connected to a capacitor. In order to adequately model the magnetic insulation mechanisms, a computer algorithm is developed. Plasma engines, with their efficient utilization of the propellant mass, are expected to provide the next-generation advanced propulsion systems.

  9. Advanced Chemical Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Alexander, Leslie, Jr.

    2006-01-01

    Advanced Chemical Propulsion (ACP) provides near-term incremental improvements in propulsion system performance and/or cost. It is an evolutionary approach to technology development that produces useful products along the way to meet increasingly more demanding mission requirements while focusing on improving payload mass fraction to yield greater science capability. Current activities are focused on two areas: chemical propulsion component, subsystem, and manufacturing technologies that offer measurable system level benefits; and the evaluation of high-energy storable propellants with enhanced performance for in-space application. To prioritize candidate propulsion technology alternatives, a variety of propulsion/mission analyses and trades have been conducted for SMD missions to yield sufficient data for investment planning. They include: the Advanced Chemical Propulsion Assessment; an Advanced Chemical Propulsion System Model; a LOx-LH2 small pumps conceptual design; a space storables propellant study; a spacecraft cryogenic propulsion study; an advanced pressurization and mixture ratio control study; and a pump-fed vs. pressure-fed study.

  10. Advanced subsonic transport propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nored, D. L.; Ciepluch, C. C.; Chamberlain, R.; Meleason, E. T.; Kraft, G. A.

    1981-01-01

    A brief review of the current NASA Energy Efficient Engine (E(3)) Project is presented. Included in this review are the factors that influenced the design of these turbofan engines and the advanced technology incorporated in them to reduce fuel consumption and improve environmental characteristics. In addition, factors such as the continuing spiral in fuel cost, that could influence future aircraft propulsion systems beyond those represented by the E(3) engines, are also discussed. Advanced technologies that will address these influencing factors and provide viable future propulsion systems are described. The potential importance of other propulsion system types, such as geared fans and turboshaft engines, is presented.

  11. Advanced Space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frisbee, Robert H.

    1996-01-01

    This presentation describes a number of advanced space propulsion technologies with the potential for meeting the need for dramatic reductions in the cost of access to space, and the need for new propulsion capabilities to enable bold new space exploration (and, ultimately, space exploitation) missions of the 21st century. For example, current Earth-to-orbit (e.g., low Earth orbit, LEO) launch costs are extremely high (ca. $10,000/kg); a factor 25 reduction (to ca. $400/kg) will be needed to produce the dramatic increases in space activities in both the civilian and government sectors identified in the Commercial Space Transportation Study (CSTS). Similarly, in the area of space exploration, all of the relatively 'easy' missions (e.g., robotic flybys, inner solar system orbiters and landers; and piloted short-duration Lunar missions) have been done. Ambitious missions of the next century (e.g., robotic outer-planet orbiters/probes, landers, rovers, sample returns; and piloted long-duration Lunar and Mars missions) will require major improvements in propulsion capability. In some cases, advanced propulsion can enable a mission by making it faster or more affordable, and in some cases, by directly enabling the mission (e.g., interstellar missions). As a general rule, advanced propulsion systems are attractive because of their low operating costs (e.g., higher specific impulse, ISD) and typically show the most benefit for relatively 'big' missions (i.e., missions with large payloads or AV, or a large overall mission model). In part, this is due to the intrinsic size of the advanced systems as compared to state-of-the-art (SOTA) chemical propulsion systems. Also, advanced systems often have a large 'infrastructure' cost, either in the form of initial R&D costs or in facilities hardware costs (e.g., laser or microwave transmission ground stations for beamed energy propulsion). These costs must then be amortized over a large mission to be cost-competitive with a SOTA

  12. Advanced Chemical Propulsion Study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Woodcock, Gordon; Byers, Dave; Alexander, Leslie A.; Krebsbach, Al

    2004-01-01

    A study was performed of advanced chemical propulsion technology application to space science (Code S) missions. The purpose was to begin the process of selecting chemical propulsion technology advancement activities that would provide greatest benefits to Code S missions. Several missions were selected from Code S planning data, and a range of advanced chemical propulsion options was analyzed to assess capabilities and benefits re these missions. Selected beneficial applications were found for higher-performing bipropellants, gelled propellants, and cryogenic propellants. Technology advancement recommendations included cryocoolers and small turbopump engines for cryogenic propellants; space storable propellants such as LOX-hydrazine; and advanced monopropellants. It was noted that fluorine-bearing oxidizers offer performance gains over more benign oxidizers. Potential benefits were observed for gelled propellants that could be allowed to freeze, then thawed for use.

  13. Advanced propulsion concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frisbee, Robert H.

    1991-01-01

    A variety of Advanced Propulsion Concepts (APC) is discussed. The focus is on those concepts that are sufficiently near-term that they could be developed for the Space Exploration Initiative. High-power (multi-megawatt) electric propulsion, solar sails, tethers, and extraterrestrial resource utilization concepts are discussed. A summary of these concepts and some general conclusions on their technology development needs are presented.

  14. Advanced cryo propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tabata, William K.

    1991-01-01

    The following topics are presented in viewgraph form: (1) advanced space engine (ASE) chronology; (2) an ASE description; (3) a single expander; (4) a dual expander; (5) split expander; (6) launch vehicle start; (7) space start; (8) chemical transfer propulsion; and (9) an advanced expander test bed.

  15. Advanced Space Fission Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Borowski, Stanley K.

    2010-01-01

    -to-weight ratio. This presentation will discuss potential space fission propulsion options ranging from first generation systems to highly advanced systems. Ongoing research that shows promise for enabling second generation NTP systems with Isp greater than 1000 s will be discussed, as will the potential for liquid, gas, or plasma core systems. Space fission propulsion systems could also be used in conjunction with simple (water-based) propellant depots to enable routine, affordable missions to various destinations (e.g. moon, Mars, asteroids) once in-space infrastructure is sufficiently developed. As fuel and material technologies advance, very high performance Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP) systems may also become viable. These systems could enable sophisticated science missions, highly efficient cargo delivery, and human missions to numerous destinations. Commonalities between NTP, fission power systems, and NEP will be discussed.

  16. Center for Advanced Space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1995-01-01

    The Center for Advanced Space Propulsion (CASP) is part of the University of Tennessee-Calspan Center for Aerospace Research (CAR). It was formed in 1985 to take advantage of the extensive research faculty and staff of the University of Tennessee and Calspan Corporation. It is also one of sixteen NASA sponsored Centers established to facilitate the Commercial Development of Space. Based on investigators' qualifications in propulsion system development, and matching industries' strong intent, the Center focused its efforts in the following technical areas: advanced chemical propulsion, electric propulsion, AI/Expert systems, fluids management in microgravity, and propulsion materials processing. This annual report focuses its discussion in these technical areas.

  17. MHD Simulation of Magnetic Nozzle Plasma with the NIMROD Code: Applications to the VASIMR Advanced Space Propulsion Concept

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tarditi, Alfonso G.; Shebalin, John V.

    2002-11-01

    A simulation study with the NIMROD code [1] is being carried on to investigate the efficiency of the thrust generation process and the properties of the plasma detachment in a magnetic nozzle. In the simulation, hot plasma is injected in the magnetic nozzle, modeled as a 2D, axi-symmetric domain. NIMROD has two-fluid, 3D capabilities but the present runs are being conducted within the MHD, 2D approximation. As the plasma travels through the magnetic field, part of its thermal energy is converted into longitudinal kinetic energy, along the axis of the nozzle. The plasma eventually detaches from the magnetic field at a certain distance from the nozzle throat where the kinetic energy becomes larger than the magnetic energy. Preliminary NIMROD 2D runs have been benchmarked with a particle trajectory code showing satisfactory results [2]. Further testing is here reported with the emphasis on the analysis of the diffusion rate across the field lines and of the overall nozzle efficiency. These simulation runs are specifically designed for obtaining comparisons with laboratory measurements of the VASIMR experiment, by looking at the evolution of the radial plasma density and temperature profiles in the nozzle. VASIMR (Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket, [3]) is an advanced space propulsion concept currently under experimental development at the Advanced Space Propulsion Laboratory, NASA Johnson Space Center. A plasma (typically ionized Hydrogen or Helium) is generated by a RF (Helicon) discharge and heated by an Ion Cyclotron Resonance Heating antenna. The heated plasma is then guided into a magnetic nozzle to convert the thermal plasma energy into effective thrust. The VASIMR system has no electrodes and a solenoidal magnetic field produced by an asymmetric mirror configuration ensures magnetic insulation of the plasma from the material surfaces. By powering the plasma source and the heating antenna at different levels it is possible to vary smoothly of the

  18. Advanced Propulsion Physics Lab: Eagleworks Investigations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scogin, Tyler

    2014-01-01

    Eagleworks Laboratory is an advanced propulsions physics laboratory with two primary investigations currently underway. The first is a Quantum Vacuum Plasma Thruster (QVPT or Q-thrusters), an advanced electric propulsion technology in the development and demonstration phase. The second investigation is in Warp Field Interferometry (WFI). This is an investigation of Dr. Harold "Sonny" White's theoretical physics models for warp field equations using optical experiments in the Electro Optical laboratory (EOL) at Johnson Space Center. These investigations are pursuing technology necessary to enable human exploration of the solar system and beyond.

  19. Advanced Propulsion Research Interest in Materials for Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cole, John

    2003-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation provides an overview of material science and technology in the area of propulsion energetics. The authors note that conventional propulsion systems are near peak performance and further refinements in manufacturing, engineering design and materials will only provide incremental increases in performance. Energetic propulsion technologies could potential solve the problems of energy storage density and energy-to-thrust conversion efficiency. Topics considered include: the limits of thermal propulsion systems, the need for energetic propulsion research, emerging energetic propulsion technologies, materials research needed for advanced propulsion, and potential research opportunities.

  20. The NASA Advanced Propulsion Concepts at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leifer, S. D.; Frisbee, R. H.; Brophy, J. R.

    1997-01-01

    Research activities in advanced propulsion concepts at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory are reviewed. The concepts were selected for study because each offers the potential for either significantly enhancing space transportation capability or enabling bold, ambitious new missions.

  1. Advanced propulsion concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sercel, Joel C.

    1991-01-01

    The topics presented are covered in viewgraph form. The programmatic objective is to establish the feasibility of propulsion technologies for vastly expanded space activity. The technical objective is a revolutionary performance sought, such as: (1) about 1 kg/kW specific mass; (2) specific impulse tailored to mission requirements; (3) ability to use in-situ resources; (4) round-trips to Mars in months; (5) round-trips to outer planets in 1 to 2 years; and (6) the capability for robotic mission beyond the solar system.

  2. Materials Advance Chemical Propulsion Technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2012-01-01

    In the future, the Planetary Science Division of NASA's Science Mission Directorate hopes to use better-performing and lower-cost propulsion systems to send rovers, probes, and observers to places like Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. For such purposes, a new propulsion technology called the Advanced Materials Bipropellant Rocket (AMBR) was developed under NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology (ISPT) project, located at Glenn Research Center. As an advanced chemical propulsion system, AMBR uses nitrogen tetroxide oxidizer and hydrazine fuel to propel a spacecraft. Based on current research and development efforts, the technology shows great promise for increasing engine operation and engine lifespan, as well as lowering manufacturing costs. In developing AMBR, ISPT has several goals: to decrease the time it takes for a spacecraft to travel to its destination, reduce the cost of making the propulsion system, and lessen the weight of the propulsion system. If goals like these are met, it could result in greater capabilities for in-space science investigations. For example, if the amount (and weight) of propellant required on a spacecraft is reduced, more scientific instruments (and weight) could be added to the spacecraft. To achieve AMBR s maximum potential performance, the engine needed to be capable of operating at extremely high temperatures and pressure. To this end, ISPT required engine chambers made of iridium-coated rhenium (strong, high-temperature metallic elements) that allowed operation at temperatures close to 4,000 F. In addition, ISPT needed an advanced manufacturing technique for better coating methods to increase the strength of the engine chamber without increasing the costs of fabricating the chamber.

  3. The Potential for Ambient Plasma Wave Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gilland, James H.; Williams, George J.

    2016-01-01

    A truly robust space exploration program will need to make use of in-situ resources as much as possible to make the endeavor affordable. Most space propulsion concepts are saddled with one fundamental burden; the propellant needed to produce momentum. The most advanced propulsion systems currently in use utilize electric and/or magnetic fields to accelerate ionized propellant. However, significant planetary exploration missions in the coming decades, such as the now canceled Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter, are restricted by propellant mass and propulsion system lifetimes, using even the most optimistic projections of performance. These electric propulsion vehicles are inherently limited in flexibility at their final destination, due to propulsion system wear, propellant requirements, and the relatively low acceleration of the vehicle. A few concepts are able to utilize the environment around them to produce thrust: Solar or magnetic sails and, with certain restrictions, electrodynamic tethers. These concepts focus primarily on using the solar wind or ambient magnetic fields to generate thrust. Technically immature, quasi-propellantless alternatives lack either the sensitivity or the power to provide significant maneuvering. An additional resource to be considered is the ambient plasma and magnetic fields in solar and planetary magnetospheres. These environments, such as those around the Sun or Jupiter, have been shown to host a variety of plasma waves. Plasma wave propulsion takes advantage of an observed astrophysical and terrestrial phenomenon: Alfven waves. These are waves that propagate in the plasma and magnetic fields around and between planets and stars. The generation of Alfven waves in ambient magnetic and plasma fields to generate thrust is proposed as a truly propellantless propulsion system which may enable an entirely new matrix of exploration missions. Alfven waves are well known, transverse electromagnetic waves that propagate in magnetized plasmas at

  4. The NASA-JPL advanced propulsion program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frisbee, Robert H.

    1994-01-01

    The NASA Advanced Propulsion Concepts (APC) program at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) consists of two main areas: The first involves cooperative modeling and research activities between JPL and various universities and industry; the second involves research at universities and industry that is directly supported by JPL. The cooperative research program consists of mission studies, research and development of ion engine technology using C-60 (Buckminsterfullerene) propellant, and research and development of lithium-propellant Lorentz-force accelerator (LFA) engine technology. The university/industry- supported research includes research (modeling and proof-of-concept experiments) in advanced, long-life electric propulsion, and in fusion propulsion. These propulsion concepts were selected primarily to cover a range of applications from near-term to far-term missions. For example, the long-lived pulsed-xenon thruster research that JPL is supporting at Princeton University addresses the near-term need for efficient, long-life attitude control and station-keeping propulsion for Earth-orbiting spacecraft. The C-60-propellant ion engine has the potential for good efficiency in a relatively low specific impulse (Isp) range (10,000 - 30,000 m/s) that is optimum for relatively fast (less than 100 day) cis-lunar (LEO/GEO/Lunar) missions employing near-term, high-specific mass electric propulsion vehicles. Research and modeling on the C-60-ion engine are currently being performed by JPL (engine demonstration), Caltech (C-60 properties), MIT (plume modeling), and USC (diagnostics). The Li-propellant LFA engine also has good efficiency in the modest Isp range (40,000 - 50,000 m/s) that is optimum for near-to-mid-term megawatt-class solar- and nuclear-electric propulsion vehicles used for Mars missions transporting cargo (in support of a piloted mission). Research and modeling on the Li-LFA engine are currently being performed by JPL (cathode development), Moscow Aviation

  5. Characterization of advanced electric propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ray, P. K.

    1982-01-01

    Characteristic parameters of several advanced electric propulsion systems are evaluated and compared. The propulsion systems studied are mass driver, rail gun, argon MPD thruster, hydrogen free radical thruster and mercury electron bombardment ion engine. Overall, ion engines have somewhat better characteristics as compared to the other electric propulsion systems.

  6. Advanced propulsion activities in the USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garrison, P. W.

    Advances in propulsion system performance are necessary to meet the projected requirements of future launch vehicles, orbit transfer vehicles, satellites and planetary spacecraft. Ongoing U.S. space propulsion research programs are aggressively pursuing the development of the technology to meet these requirements. This paper reviews advanced propulsion research in the USA. Work accomplished in 1985 and future plans for ongoing research programs are discussed. Theoretical and experimental research programs and system studies of augmented hydrazine, arcjet, magnetoplasma dynamic thruster, ion thruster, metastable chemical, solar thermal, light sail, microwave and laser propulsion, nuclear fission rockets, and fusion and antimatter propulsion systems are addressed.

  7. Overview on NASA's Advanced Electric Propulsion Concepts Activities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frisbee, Robert H.

    1999-01-01

    Advanced electric propulsion research activities are currently underway that seek to addresses feasibility issues of a wide range of advanced concepts, and may result in the development of technologies that will enable exciting new missions within our solar system and beyond. Each research activity is described in terms of the present focus and potential future applications. Topics include micro-electric thrusters, electrodynamic tethers, high power plasma thrusters and related applications in materials processing, variable specific impulse plasma thrusters, pulsed inductive thrusters, computational techniques for thruster modeling, and advanced electric propulsion missions and systems studies.

  8. Advanced Chemical Propulsion System Study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Portz, Ron; Alexander, Leslie; Chapman, Jack; England, Chris; Henderson, Scott; Krismer, David; Lu, Frank; Wilson, Kim; Miller, Scott

    2007-01-01

    A detailed; mission-level systems study has been performed to show the benefit resulting from engine performance gains that will result from NASA's In-Space Propulsion ROSS Cycle 3A NRA, Advanced Chemical Technology sub-topic. The technology development roadmap to accomplish the NRA goals are also detailed in this paper. NASA-Marshall and NASA-JPL have conducted mission-level studies to define engine requirements, operating conditions, and interfaces. Five reference missions have been chosen for this analysis based on scientific interest, current launch vehicle capability and trends in space craft size: a) GTO to GEO, 4800 kg, delta-V for GEO insertion only approx.1830 m/s; b) Titan Orbiter with aerocapture, 6620 kg, total delta V approx.210 m/s, mostly for periapsis raise after aerocapture; c) Enceladus Orbiter (Titan aerocapture) 6620 kg, delta V approx.2400 m/s; d) Europa Orbiter, 2170 kg, total delta V approx.2600 m/s; and e) Mars Orbiter, 2250 kg, total delta V approx.1860 m/s. The figures of merit used to define the benefit of increased propulsion efficiency at the spacecraft level include propulsion subsystem wet mass, volume and overall cost. The objective of the NRA is to increase the specific impulse of pressure-fed earth storable bipropellant rocket engines to greater than 330 seconds with nitrogen tetroxide and monomothylhydrazine propellants and greater than 335 , seconds with nitrogen tetroxide and hydrazine. Achievement of the NRA goals will significantly benefit NASA interplanetary missions and other government and commercial opportunities by enabling reduced launch weight and/or increased payload. The study also constitutes a crucial stepping stone to future development, such as pump-fed storable engines.

  9. Advanced nuclear thermal propulsion concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howe, Steven D.

    1993-01-01

    In 1989, a Presidential directive created the Space Exploration Initiative (SEI) which had a goal of placing mankind on Mars in the early 21st century. The SEI was effectively terminated in 1992 with the election of a new administration. Although the initiative did not exist long enough to allow substantial technology development, it did provide a venue, for the first time in 20 years, to comprehensively evaluate advanced propulsion concepts which could enable fast, manned transits to Mars. As part of the SEI based investigations, scientists from NASA, DoE National Laboratories, universities, and industry met regularly and proceeded to examine a variety of innovative ideas. Most of the effort was directed toward developing a solid-core, nuclear thermal rocket and examining a high-power nuclear electric propulsion system. In addition, however, an Innovative Concepts committee was formed and charged with evaluating concepts that offered a much higher performance but were less technologically mature. The committee considered several concepts and eventually recommended that further work be performed in the areas of gas core fission rockets, inertial confinement fusion systems, antimatter based rockets, and gas core fission electric systems. Following the committee's recommendations, some computational modeling work has been performed at Los Alamos in certain of these areas and critical issues have been identified.

  10. External Pulsed Plasma Propulsion (EPPP) Analysis Maturation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bonometti, Joesph A.; Morton, P. Jeff; Schmidt, George R. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    External Pulsed Plasma Propulsion (EPPP) systems are at the stage of engineering infancy with evolving paradigms for application. performance and general characteristics. Recent efforts have focused on an approach that employs existing technologies with near term EPPP development for usage in interplanetary exploration and asteroid/comet deflection. if mandated. The inherent advantages of EPPP are discussed and its application to a variety of propulsion concepts is explored. These include, but are not limited to, utilizing energy sources such as fission. fusion and antimatter, as well as, improved chemical explosives. A mars mission scenario is presented as a demonstration of its capability using existing technologies. A suggested alternate means to improve EPPP efficiencies could also lead to a heavy lift (non-nuclear) launch vehicle capability. Conceivably, true low-cost, access to space is possible using advanced explosive propellants and/or coupling the EPPP vehicle to a "beam propellant" concept. EPPP systems appear to offer an approach that can potentially cover ETO through interstellar transportation capability. A technology roadmap is presented that shows mutual benefits pertaining to a substantial number of existing space propulsion and research areas.

  11. A Flight Demonstration of Plasma Rocket Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Petro, Andrew

    1999-01-01

    The Advanced Space Propulsion Laboratory at the Johnson Space Center has been engaged in the development of a magneto-plasma rocket for several years. This type of rocket could be used in the future to propel interplanetary spacecraft. One advantageous feature of this rocket concept is the ability to vary its specific impulse so that it can be operated in a mode which maximizes propellant efficiency or a mode which maximizes thrust. This presentation will describe a proposed flight experiment in which a simple version of the rocket will be tested in space. In addition to the plasma rocket, the flight experiment will also demonstrate the use of a superconducting electromagnet, extensive use of heat pipes, and possibly the transfer of cryogenic propellant in space.

  12. Advanced transportation system studies. Alternate propulsion subsystem concepts: Propulsion database

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levack, Daniel

    1993-01-01

    The Advanced Transportation System Studies alternate propulsion subsystem concepts propulsion database interim report is presented. The objective of the database development task is to produce a propulsion database which is easy to use and modify while also being comprehensive in the level of detail available. The database is to be available on the Macintosh computer system. The task is to extend across all three years of the contract. Consequently, a significant fraction of the effort in this first year of the task was devoted to the development of the database structure to ensure a robust base for the following years' efforts. Nonetheless, significant point design propulsion system descriptions and parametric models were also produced. Each of the two propulsion databases, parametric propulsion database and propulsion system database, are described. The descriptions include a user's guide to each code, write-ups for models used, and sample output. The parametric database has models for LOX/H2 and LOX/RP liquid engines, solid rocket boosters using three different propellants, a hybrid rocket booster, and a NERVA derived nuclear thermal rocket engine.

  13. Center for Advanced Space Propulsion Second Annual Technical Symposium Proceedings

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    The proceedings for the Center for Advanced Space Propulsion Second Annual Technical Symposium are divided as follows: Chemical Propulsion, CFD; Space Propulsion; Electric Propulsion; Artificial Intelligence; Low-G Fluid Management; and Rocket Engine Materials.

  14. Eagleworks Laboratories: Advanced Propulsion Physics Research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    White, Harold; March, Paul; Williams, Nehemiah; ONeill, William

    2011-01-01

    NASA/JSC is implementing an advanced propulsion physics laboratory, informally known as "Eagleworks", to pursue propulsion technologies necessary to enable human exploration of the solar system over the next 50 years, and enabling interstellar spaceflight by the end of the century. This work directly supports the "Breakthrough Propulsion" objectives detailed in the NASA OCT TA02 In-space Propulsion Roadmap, and aligns with the #10 Top Technical Challenge identified in the report. Since the work being pursued by this laboratory is applied scientific research in the areas of the quantum vacuum, gravitation, nature of space-time, and other fundamental physical phenomenon, high fidelity testing facilities are needed. The lab will first implement a low-thrust torsion pendulum (<1 uN), and commission the facility with an existing Quantum Vacuum Plasma Thruster. To date, the QVPT line of research has produced data suggesting very high specific impulse coupled with high specific force. If the physics and engineering models can be explored and understood in the lab to allow scaling to power levels pertinent for human spaceflight, 400kW SEP human missions to Mars may become a possibility, and at power levels of 2MW, 1-year transit to Neptune may also be possible. Additionally, the lab is implementing a warp field interferometer that will be able to measure spacetime disturbances down to 150nm. Recent work published by White [1] [2] [3] suggests that it may be possible to engineer spacetime creating conditions similar to what drives the expansion of the cosmos. Although the expected magnitude of the effect would be tiny, it may be a "Chicago pile" moment for this area of physics.

  15. Modeling of Spacecraft Advanced Chemical Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Benfield, Michael P. J.; Belcher, Jeremy A.

    2004-01-01

    This paper outlines the development of the Advanced Chemical Propulsion System (ACPS) model for Earth and Space Storable propellants. This model was developed by the System Technology Operation of SAIC-Huntsville for the NASA MSFC In-Space Propulsion Project Office. Each subsystem of the model is described. Selected model results will also be shown to demonstrate the model's ability to evaluate technology changes in chemical propulsion systems.

  16. Nuclear Thermal Propulsion for Advanced Space Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, M. G.; Borowski, S. K.; George, J. A.; Kim, T.; Emrich, W. J.; Hickman, R. R.; Broadway, J. W.; Gerrish, H. P.; Adams, R. B.

    2012-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) based on NTP could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of the NCPS in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progress made under the NCPS project could help enable both advanced NTP and advanced Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP).

  17. Neutron plasma propulsion - A precursor to magnetic fusion rocket

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watanabe, Yoichi; Parrish, Ted; Montalvo, Elena; Carrera, Rodolfo

    1993-06-01

    A novel advanced space propulsion concept, neutron plasma space propulsion (NPP), is proposed. The NPP system is an open cycle nuclear thermal type with a varying specific impulse (800-10 million sec). The NPP system uses a state-of-art magnetic confinement scheme for a hot plasma. The plasma is heated by high energy ions produced by thermal neutron-induced nuclear reactions. The low density plasma is confined in a magnetic bottle for a sufficiently long time period so that the plasma temperature may be high (10 eV to 1 keV). Thermal neutrons are provided by a nuclear fission reactor. A magnetic nozzle is used for the plasma exhaust.

  18. Propulsion issues for advanced orbit transfer vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cooper, L. P.

    1984-01-01

    Studies of the United States Space Transportation System show that in the mid to late 1990s expanded capabilities for orbital transfer vehicles (OTV) will be needed to meet increased payload requirements for transporting materials and possibly men to geosynchronous orbit. Discussion and observations relative to the propulsion system issues of space basing, aeroassist compatibility, man ratability and enhanced payload delivery capability are presented. These issues will require resolution prior to the development of a propulsion system for the advanced OTV. The NASA program in support of advanced propulsion for an OTV is briefly described along with conceptual engine design characteristics.

  19. Advanced Chemical Propulsion for Science Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liou, Larry

    2008-01-01

    The advanced chemical propulsion technology area of NASA's In-Space Technology Project is investing in systems and components for increased performance and reduced cost of chemical propulsion technologies applicable to near-term science missions. Presently the primary investment in the advanced chemical propulsion technology area is in the AMBR high temperature storable bipropellant rocket engine. Scheduled to be available for flight development starting in year 2008, AMBR engine shows a 60 kg payload gain in an analysis for the Titan-Enceladus orbiter mission and a 33 percent manufacturing cost reduction over its baseline, state-of-the-art counterpart. Other technologies invested include the reliable lightweight tanks for propellant and the precision propellant management and mixture ratio control. Both technologies show significant mission benefit, can be applied to any liquid propulsion system, and upon completion of the efforts described in this paper, are at least in parts ready for flight infusion. Details of the technologies are discussed.

  20. Z-Pinch Pulsed Plasma Propulsion Technology Development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Polsgrove, Tara; Adams, Robert B.; Fabisinski, Leo; Fincher, Sharon; Maples, C. Dauphne; Miernik, Janie; Percy, Tom; Statham, Geoff; Turner, Matt; Cassibry, Jason; Cortez, Ross; Santarius, John

    2010-01-01

    Fusion-based propulsion can enable fast interplanetary transportation. Magneto-inertial fusion (MIF) is an approach which has been shown to potentially lead to a low cost, small reactor for fusion break even. The Z-Pinch/dense plasma focus method is an MIF concept in which a column of gas is compressed to thermonuclear conditions by an axial current (I approximates 100 MA). Recent advancements in experiments and the theoretical understanding of this concept suggest favorable scaling of fusion power output yield as I(sup 4). This document presents a conceptual design of a Z-Pinch fusion propulsion system and a vehicle for human exploration. The purpose of this study is to apply Z-Pinch fusion principles to the design of a propulsion system for an interplanetary spacecraft. This study took four steps in service of that objective; these steps are identified below. 1. Z-Pinch Modeling and Analysis: There is a wealth of literature characterizing Z-Pinch physics and existing Z-Pinch physics models. In order to be useful in engineering analysis, simplified Z-Pinch fusion thermodynamic models are required to give propulsion engineers the quantity of plasma, plasma temperature, rate of expansion, etc. The study team developed these models in this study. 2. Propulsion Modeling and Analysis: While the Z-Pinch models characterize the fusion process itself, propulsion models calculate the parameters that characterize the propulsion system (thrust, specific impulse, etc.) The study team developed a Z-Pinch propulsion model and used it to determine the best values for pulse rate, amount of propellant per pulse, and mixture ratio of the D-T and liner materials as well as the resulting thrust and specific impulse of the system. 3. Mission Analysis: Several potential missions were studied. Trajectory analysis using data from the propulsion model was used to determine the duration of the propulsion burns, the amount of propellant expended to complete each mission considered. 4

  1. Technical Considerations for Advanced Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.

    1999-01-01

    This presentation reviews concerns involving advanced propulsion systems. The problems involved with the use of Am-242m, is that it has a high "eta" plus an order of magnitude larger fission cross section than other fissionable materials, and that it is extremely rare. However other americium isotopes are much more common, but extremely effective isotopic separation is required. Deuterium-Tritium fusion is also not attractive for space propulsion applications. Because the pulsed systems cannot breed adequate amounts of tritium and it is difficult and expensive to bring tritium from Earth. The systems that do breed tritium have severely limited performance. However, other fusion processes should still be evaluated. Another problem with advanced propellants is that inefficiencies in converting the total energy generated into propellant energy can lead to tremendous heat rejection requirements. Therefore Many. advanced propulsion concepts benefit greatly from low-mass radiators.

  2. MSFC's Advanced Space Propulsion Formulation Task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huebner, Lawrence D.; Gerrish, Harold P.; Robinson, Joel W.; Taylor, Terry L.

    2012-01-01

    In NASA s Fiscal Year 2012, a small project was undertaken to provide additional substance, depth, and activity knowledge to the technology areas identified in the In-Space Propulsion Systems Roadmap, Technology Area 02 (TA-02), as created under the auspices of the NASA Office of the Chief Technologist (OCT). This roadmap was divided into four basic groups: (1) Chemical Propulsion, (2) Non-chemical Propulsion, (3) Advanced (TRL<3) Propulsion Technologies, and (4) Supporting Technologies. The first two were grouped according to the governing physics. The third group captured technologies and physic concepts that are at a lower TRL level. The fourth group identified pertinent technical areas that are strongly coupled with these related areas which could allow significant improvements in performance. There were a total of 45 technologies identified in TA-02, and 25 of these were studied in this formulation task. The goal of this task was to provide OCT with a knowledge-base for decisionmaking on advanced space propulsion technologies and not waste money by unintentionally repeating past projects or funding the technologies with minor impacts. This formulation task developed the next level of detail for technologies described and provides context to OCT where investments should be made. The presentation will begin with the list of technologies from TA-02, how they were prioritized for this study, and details on what additional data was captured for the technologies studied. Following this, some samples of the documentation will be provided, followed by plans on how the data will be made accessible.

  3. Advanced supersonic propulsion study, phase 3

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howlett, R. A.; Johnson, J.; Sabatella, J.; Sewall, T.

    1976-01-01

    The variable stream control engine is determined to be the most promising propulsion system concept for advanced supersonic cruise aircraft. This concept uses variable geometry components and a unique throttle schedule for independent control of two flow streams to provide low jet noise at takeoff and high performance at both subsonic and supersonic cruise. The advanced technology offers a 25% improvement in airplane range and an 8 decibel reduction in takeoff noise, relative to first generation supersonic turbojet engines.

  4. Benefits of advanced propulsion technology for the advanced supersonic transport

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hines, R. W.; Sabatella, J. A.

    1973-01-01

    Future supersonic transports will have to provide improvement in the areas of economics, range, and emissions relative to the present generation of supersonic transports, as well as meeting or improving upon FAR 36 noise goals. This paper covers the promising propulsion systems including variable-cycle engine concepts for long-range supersonic commercial transport application. The benefits of applying advanced propulsion technology to solve the economic and environmental problems are reviewed. The advanced propulsion technologies covered are in the areas of structures, materials, cooling techniques, aerodynamics, variable engine geometry, jet noise suppressors, acoustic treatment, and low-emission burners. The results of applying the advanced propulsion technology are presented in terms of improvement in overall system takeoff gross weight and return on investment.

  5. Performance of advanced missions using fusion propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Friedlander, Alan; Mcadams, Jim; Schulze, Norm

    1989-01-01

    A quantitive evaluation of the premise that nuclear fusion propulsion offers benefits as compared to other propulsion technologies for carrying out a program of advanced exploration of the solar system and beyond is presented. Using a simplified analytical model of trajectory performance, numerical results of mass requirements versus trip time are given for robotic missions beyond the solar system that include flyby and rendezvous with the Oort cloud of comets and with the star system Alpha Centauri. Round trip missions within the solar system, including robotic sample returns from the outer planet moons and multiple asteroid targets, and manned Mars exploration are also described.

  6. Advanced electrostatic ion thruster for space propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Masek, T. D.; Macpherson, D.; Gelon, W.; Kami, S.; Poeschel, R. L.; Ward, J. W.

    1978-01-01

    The suitability of the baseline 30 cm thruster for future space missions was examined. Preliminary design concepts for several advanced thrusters were developed to assess the potential practical difficulties of a new design. Useful methodologies were produced for assessing both planetary and earth orbit missions. Payload performance as a function of propulsion system technology level and cost sensitivity to propulsion system technology level are among the topics assessed. A 50 cm diameter thruster designed to operate with a beam voltage of about 2400 V is suggested to satisfy most of the requirements of future space missions.

  7. Development of Metal Matrix Composites for NASA'S Advanced Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, Jonathan A.

    2000-01-01

    The state-of-the-art development of several aluminum and copper based Metal Matrix Composites (MMC) for NASA's advanced propulsion systems will be presented. The presentation's goal is to provide an overview of NASA-Marshall Space Flight Center's planned and on-going activities in MMC for advanced liquid rocket engines such as the X-33 vehicle's Aerospike and X-34 Fastrac engine. The focus will be on lightweight and environmental compatibility with oxygen and hydrogen of key MMC materials, within each NASA's new propulsion application, that will provide a high payoff for NASA's reusable launch vehicle systems and space access vehicles. Advanced MMC processing techniques such as plasma spray, centrifugal casting, pressure infiltration casting will be discussed. Development of a novel 3D printing method for low cost production of composite preform, and functional gradient MMC to enhanced rocket engine's dimensional stability will be presented.

  8. Center for Advanced Space Propulsion (CASP)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1988-01-01

    With a mission to initiate and conduct advanced propulsion research in partnership with industry, and a goal to strengthen U.S. national capability in propulsion technology, the Center for Advanced Space Propulsion (CASP) is the only NASA Center for Commercial Development of Space (CCDS) which focuses on propulsion and associated technologies. Meetings with industrial partners and NASA Headquarters personnel provided an assessment of the constraints placed on, and opportunities afforded commercialization projects. Proprietary information, data rights, and patent rights were some of the areas where well defined information is crucial to project success and follow-on efforts. There were five initial CASP projects. At the end of the first year there are six active, two of which are approaching the ground test phase in their development. Progress in the current six projects has met all milestones and is detailed. Working closely with the industrial counterparts it was found that the endeavors in expert systems development, computational fluid dynamics, fluid management in microgravity, and electric propulsion were well received. One project with the Saturn Corporation which dealt with expert systems application in the assembly process, was placed on hold pending further direction from Saturn. The Contamination Measurment and Analysis project was not implemented since CASP was unable to identify an industrial participant. Additional propulsion and related projects were investigated during the year. A subcontract was let to a small business, MicroCraft, Inc., to study rocket engine certification standards. The study produced valuable results; however, based on a number of factors it was decided not to pursue this project further.

  9. Advanced electric propulsion research - 1990

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Monheiser, Jeffery M.; Wilbur, Paul J.

    1991-01-01

    An experimental study of impingement current collection on the accelerator grid of an ion thruster is presented. The equipment, instruments, and procedures being used to conduct the study are discussed. The contribution to this current due to charge-exchange ions produced close to the grid is determined using a volume-integration procedure and measured ion beam current design, computed neutral atom density and measured beam plasma potential data. This current, which is expected to be almost equal to that measured directly, is found to be an order of magnitude less. The impingement current determined by integrating the current density of ambient ions in the beam plasma close to the grid is found to agree with the directly measured impingement current. Possible reasons for the disagreement between the directly measured and volume integrated impingement currents are discussed.

  10. Advanced space propulsion thruster research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilbur, P. J.

    1981-01-01

    Experiments showed that stray magnetic fields can adversely affect the capacity of a hollow cathode neutralizer to couple to an ion beam. Magnetic field strength at the neutralizer cathode orifice is a crucial factor influencing the coupling voltage. The effects of electrostatic accelerator grid aperture diameters on the ion current extraction capabilities were examined experimentally to describe the divergence, deflection, and current extraction capabilities of grids with the screen and accelerator apertures displaced relative to one another. Experiments performed in orificed, mercury hollow cathodes support the model of field enhanced thermionic electron mission from cathode inserts. Tests supported the validity of a thermal model of the cathode insert. A theoretical justification of a Saha equation model relating cathode plasma properties is presented. Experiments suggest that ion loss rates to discharge chamber walls can be controlled. A series of new discharge chamber magnetic field configurations were generated in the flexible magnetic field thruster and their effect on performance was examined. A technique used in the thruster to measure ion currents to discharge chamber walls is described. Using these ion currents the fraction of ions produced that are extracted from the discharge chamber and the energy cost of plasma ions are computed.

  11. Advanced electric propulsion research, 1989

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilbur, Paul J.

    1990-01-01

    Results of an experimental study of the characteristics of ion thruster hollow cathodes operating at high discharge currents (up to 60 A) are presented in a companion report. This work shows that ions produced near the cathode orifice can acquire sufficient energy to induce the high sputter erosion rates on cathode potential surfaces that have been observed in ion thrusters. A mechanism by which these ions could be produced is also described. A second, brief study showing how a discharge chamber model developed previously can be applied to determine optimal values for one or more discharge chamber design parameters is presented. The experimental approach being used to study the plasma potential field and charge-exchange ion production rate downstream of the accelerator grid of an ion thruster is discussed and preliminary results are presented.

  12. Advanced propulsion concepts for orbital transfer vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cooper, L. P.

    1982-01-01

    Studies of the United States Space Transportation System show that in the mid-to-late 1990s expanded capabilities for Orbital Transfer Vehicles (OTV) will be needed to meet increased payload requirements for transporting materials and possible men to geosynchronous orbit. NASA is conducting a technology program in support of an advanced propulsion system for future OTVs. This program is briefly described with results to date of the first program element, the Conceptual Design and Technology Definition studies.

  13. Mini-Magnetospheric Plasma Propulsion Experiment (MMPX)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ziemba, Tim; Slough, John; Winglee, Robert

    1999-11-01

    The MMPX is a new laboratory device that is designed to study plasma dynamics and confinement in a magnetic dipole with field strengths ranging from 0.01 to 0.2 T. The magnetic dipole is constructed of two short solenoidal Helmholtz coils with a 0.3 m diameter. Plasma is injected onto the field lines by a Helicon source located on the inner, high field side of the dipole field. Plasma densities of 1-2× 10^19m-3 are expected with electron temperatures of 4 eV or greater. As plasma flows out along the dipole field, the background neutral pressure is kept low to maintain the plasma in a collisionless, ``frozen-in'' state. As the local field decreases, the plasma pressure eventually exceeds the field pressure. At this point the magnetic flux will be pulled dynamically outward with the plasma. Observation of this flux expansion is the major goal of the experiment. In space the continued expansion of the dipole flux will be inhibited only by the solar wind pressure. The configuration would thus act as a large scale ( ~ 30 km) magneto-plasma barrier to the solar wind, and would allow for spacecraft propulsion with megawatt thrust power from a kilowatt source.

  14. Advanced orbit transfer vehicle propulsion system study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cathcart, J. A.; Cooper, T. W.; Corringrato, R. M.; Cronau, S. T.; Forgie, S. C.; Harder, M. J.; Mcallister, J. G.; Rudman, T. J.; Stoneback, V. W.

    1985-01-01

    A reuseable orbit transfer vehicle concept was defined and subsequent recommendations for the design criteria of an advanced LO2/LH2 engine were presented. The major characteristics of the vehicle preliminary design include a low lift to drag aerocapture capability, main propulsion system failure criteria of fail operational/fail safe, and either two main engines with an attitude control system for backup or three main engines to meet the failure criteria. A maintenance and servicing approach was also established for the advanced vehicle and engine concepts. Design tradeoff study conclusions were based on the consideration of reliability, performance, life cycle costs, and mission flexibility.

  15. Materials Requirements for Advanced Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whitaker, Ann F.; Cook, Mary Beth; Clinton, R. G., Jr.

    2005-01-01

    NASA's mission to "reach the Moon and Mars" will be obtained only if research begins now to develop materials with expanded capabilities to reduce mass, cost and risk to the program. Current materials cannot function satisfactorily in the deep space environments and do not meet the requirements of long term space propulsion concepts for manned missions. Directed research is needed to better understand materials behavior for optimizing their processing. This research, generating a deeper understanding of material behavior, can lead to enhanced implementation of materials for future exploration vehicles. materials providing new approaches for manufacture and new options for In response to this need for more robust materials, NASA's Exploration Systems Mission Directorate (ESMD) has established a strategic research initiative dedicated to materials development supporting NASA's space propulsion needs. The Advanced Materials for Exploration (AME) element directs basic and applied research to understand material behavior and develop improved materials allowing propulsion systems to operate beyond their current limitations. This paper will discuss the approach used to direct the path of strategic research for advanced materials to ensure that the research is indeed supportive of NASA's future missions to the moon, Mars, and beyond.

  16. Thermal fatigue durability for advanced propulsion materials

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halford, Gary R.

    1989-01-01

    A review is presented of thermal and thermomechanical fatigue (TMF) crack initiation life prediction and cyclic constitutive modeling efforts sponsored recently by the NASA Lewis Research Center in support of advanced aeronautical propulsion research. A brief description is provided of the more significant material durability models that were created to describe TMF fatigue resistance of both isotropic and anisotropic superalloys, with and without oxidation resistant coatings. The two most significant crack initiation models are the cyclic damage accumulation model and the total strain version of strainrange partitioning. Unified viscoplastic cyclic constitutive models are also described. A troika of industry, university, and government research organizations contributed to the generation of these analytic models. Based upon current capabilities and established requirements, an attempt is made to project which TMF research activities most likely will impact future generation propulsion systems.

  17. Characterization of advanced electric propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ray, P. K.

    1982-01-01

    Characteristics of several advanced electric propulsion systems are evaluated and compared. The propulsion systems studied are mass driver, rail gun, MPD thruster, hydrogen free radical thruster and mercury electron bombardment ion engine. These are characterized by specific impulse, overall efficiency, input power, average thrust, power to average thrust ratio and average thrust to dry weight ratio. Several important physical characteristics such as dry system mass, accelerator length, bore size and current pulse requirement are also evaluated in appropriate cases. Only the ion engine can operate at a specific impulse beyond 2000 sec. Rail gun, MPD thruster and free radical thruster are currently characterized by low efficiencies. Mass drivers have the best performance characteristics in terms of overall efficiency, power to average thrust ratio and average thrust to dry weight ratio. But, they can only operate at low specific impulses due to large power requirements and are extremely long due to limitations of driving current. Mercury ion engines have the next best performance characteristics while operating at higher specific impulses. It is concluded that, overall, ion engines have somewhat better characteristics as compared to the other electric propulsion systems.

  18. Advanced supersonic propulsion study, phase 4

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howlett, R. A.

    1977-01-01

    Installation characteristics for a Variable Stream Control Engine (VSCE) were studied for three advanced supersonic airplane designs. Sensitivity of the VSCE concept to change in technology projections was evaluated in terms of impact on overall installed performance. Based on these sensitivity results, critical technology requirements were reviewed, resulting in the reaffirmation of the following requirements: low-noise nozzle system; a high performance, low emissions duct burner and main burner; hot section technology; variable geometry components; and propulsion integration features, including an integrated electronic control system.

  19. Magnetized Target Fusion in Advanced Propulsion Research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cylar, Rashad

    2003-01-01

    The Magnetized Target Fusion (MTF) Propulsion lab at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama has a program in place that has adopted to attempt to create a faster, lower cost and more reliable deep space transportation system. In this deep space travel the physics and development of high velocity plasma jets must be understood. The MTF Propulsion lab is also in attempt to open up the solar system for human exploration and commercial use. Fusion, as compared to fission, is just the opposite. Fusion involves the light atomic nuclei combination to produce denser nuclei. In the process, the energy is created by destroying the mass according to the distinguished equation: E = mc2 . Fusion energy development is being pursued worldwide as a very sustainable form of energy that is environmentally friendly. For the purposes of space exploration fusion reactions considered include the isotopes of hydrogen-deuterium (D2) and tritium (T3). Nuclei have an electrostatic repulsion between them and in order for the nuclei to fuse this repulsion must be overcome. One technique to bypass repulsion is to heat the nuclei to very high temperatures. The temperatures vary according to the type of reactions. For D-D reactions, one billion degrees Celsius is required, and for D-T reactions, one hundred million degrees is sufficient. There has to be energy input for useful output to be obtained form the fusion To make fusion propulsion practical, the mass, the volume, and the cost of the equipment to produce the reactions (generally called the reactor) need to be reduced by an order of magnitude or two from the state-of-the-art fusion machines. Innovations in fusion schemes are therefore required, especially for obtaining thrust for propulsive applications. Magnetized target fusion (MTF) is one of the innovative fusion concepts that have emerged over the last several years. MSFC is working with Los Alamos National Laboratory and other research groups in studying the

  20. Spacecraft Impacts with Advanced Power and Electric Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mason, Lee S.; Oleson, Steven R.

    2000-01-01

    A study was performed to assess the benefits of advanced power and electric propulsion systems for various space missions. Advanced power technologies that were considered included multiband gap and thin-film solar arrays, lithium batteries, and flywheels. Electric propulsion options included Hall effect thrusters and Ion thrusters. Several mission case studies were selected as representative of future applications for advanced power and propulsion systems. These included a low altitude Earth science satellite, a LEO communications constellation, a GEO military surveillance satellite, and a Mercury planetary mission. The study process entailed identification of overall mission performance using state-of-the-art power and propulsion technology, enhancements made possible with either power or electric propulsion advances individually, and the collective benefits realized when advanced power and electric propulsion are combined. Impacts to the overall spacecraft included increased payload, longer operational life, expanded operations and launch vehicle class step-downs.

  1. Green Propulsion Technologies for Advanced Air Transports

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Del Rosario, Ruben

    2015-01-01

    Air transportation is critical to U.S. and Global economic vitality. However, energy and climate issues challenge aviations ability to be sustainable in the long term. Aviation must dramatically reduce fuel use and related emissions. Energy costs to U.S. airlines nearly tripled between 1995 and 2011, and continue to be the highest percentage of operating costs. The NASA Advanced Air Transports Technology Project addresses the comprehensive challenge of enabling revolutionary energy efficiency improvements in subsonic transport aircraft combined with dramatic reductions in harmful emissions and perceived noise to facilitate sustained growth of the air transportation system. Advanced technologies and the development of unconventional aircraft systems offer the potential to achieve these improvements. The presentation will highlight the NASA vision of revolutionary systems and propulsion technologies needed to achieve these challenging goals. Specifically, the primary focus is on the N+3 generation; that is, vehicles that are three generations beyond the current state of the art, requiring mature technology solutions in the 2025-30 timeframe, which are envisioned as being powered by Hybrid Electric Propulsion Systems.

  2. Radio Frequency Plasma Applications for Space Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Baity, F.W., Jr.; Barber, G.C.; Carter, M.D.; Chang-Diaz, F.R.; Goulding, R.H.; Ilin, A.V.; Jaeger, E.F.; Sparks, D.O.; Squire, J.P.

    1999-09-13

    Recent developments in solid-state radio frequency (RF) power technologies allow for the practical consideration of RF heated plasmas for space propulsion. These technologies permit the use of any electrical power source, de-couple the power and propellant sources, and allow for the effcient use of both the propellant mass and power. Effcient use of the propellant is obtained by expelling the rocket exhaust at the highest possible velocity, which can be orders of magnitude higher than those achieved in chemical rockets. Handling the hot plasma exhaust requires the use of magnetic nozzles, and the basic physics of ion detachment from the magnetic eld is discussed. The plasma can be generated by RF using helicon waves to heat electrons. Further direct heating of the ions helps to reduce the line radiation losses, and the magnetic geometry is tailored to allow ion cyclotron resonance heating. RF eld and ion trajectory calculations are presented to give a reasonably self-consistent picture of the ion acceleration process.

  3. Advanced hybrid vehicle propulsion system study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schwarz, R.

    1982-01-01

    Results are presented of a study of an advanced heat engine/electric automotive hybrid propulsion system. The system uses a rotary stratified charge engine and ac motor/controller in a parallel hybrid configuration. The three tasks of the study were (1) parametric studies involving five different vehicle types, (2) design trade-off studies to determine the influence of various vehicle and propulsion system paramaters on system performance fuel economy and cost, and (3) a conceptual design establishing feasibility at the selected approach. Energy consumption for the selected system was .034 1/km (61.3 mpg) for the heat engine and .221 kWh/km (.356 kWh/mi) for the electric power system over a modified J227 a schedule D driving cycle. Life cycle costs were 7.13 cents/km (11.5 cents/mi) at $2/gal gasoline and 7 cents/kWh electricity for 160,000 km (100,000 mi) life.

  4. Small low mass advanced PBR's for propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Powell, J. R.; Todosow, M.; Ludewig, H.

    1993-10-01

    The advanced Particle Bed Reactor (PBR) to be described in this paper is characterized by relatively low power, and low cost, while still maintaining competition values for thrust/weight, specific impulse and operating times. In order to retain competitive values for the thrust/weight ratio while reducing the reactor size, it is necessary to change the basic reactor layout, by incorporating new concepts. The new reactor design concept is termed SIRIUS (Small Lightweight Reactor Integral Propulsion System). The following modifications are proposed for the reactor design to be discussed in this paper: Pre-heater (U-235 included in Moderator); Hy-C (Hydride/De-hydride for Reactor Control); Afterburner (U-235 impregnated into Hot Frit); and Hy-S (Hydride Spike Inside Hot Frit). Each of the modifications will be briefly discussed below, with benefits, technical issues, design approach, and risk levels addressed. The paper discusses conceptual assumptions, feasibility analysis, mass estimates, and information needs.

  5. Advanced NSTS propulsion system verification study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, Charles

    1989-01-01

    The merits of propulsion system development testing are discussed. The existing data base of technical reports and specialists is utilized in this investigation. The study encompassed a review of all available test reports of propulsion system development testing for the Saturn stages, the Titan stages, and the Space Shuttle main propulsion system. The knowledge on propulsion system development and system testing available from specialists and managers was also 'tapped' for inclusion.

  6. Plasma propulsion for geostationary satellites for telecommunication and interplanetary missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dudeck, M.; Doveil, F.; Arcis, N.; Zurbach, S.

    2012-02-01

    The advantages of electric propulsion for the orbit maintenance of geostationary satellites for telecommunications are described. Different types of plasma sources for space propulsion are presented. Due to its large performances, one of them, named Hall effect thruster is described in detail and two recent missions in space (Stentor and Smart1) using French Hall thrusters are briefly presented.

  7. Advanced propulsion options for the Mars cargo mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frisbee, Robert H.; Blandino, John J.; Sercel, Joel C.; Sargent, Mark S.; Gowda, Nandini

    1990-01-01

    Several advanced propulsion options for a split-mission piloted Mars exploration scenario are presented. The primary study focus is on identifying concepts that can reduce total initial mass in low earth orbit (IMLEO) for the cargo delivery portion of the mission; in addition, concepts that can reduce the trip time of the piloted option are assessed. The propulsion options considered are nuclear thermal propulsion, solar sails, multimegawatt-class nuclear electric propulsion, solar electric propulsion, magnetic sails, mass drivers, rail guns, solar thermal rockets, beamed-energy propulsion systems, and tethers. For the cargo mission, solar sails are found to provide the greatest mass savings over the baseline chemical system, although they suffer from having very long trip times; a good performance compromise between a low IMLEO and a short trip time can be obtained using multimegawatt-class nuclear electric propulsion systems.

  8. Fundamentals of Plasma Sails Propulsion Concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Khazanov, G. V.; Kabin, K.; Delamere, P. A.

    2002-01-01

    The Mini-Magnetospheric Plasma Propulsion (M2P2), originally proposed by Winglee et al. [2000], is based on the two-fluid plasma model and requires a 15-km frontal standoff distance (or 20-km cross-sectional diameter) in order for the magnetic bubble to absorb sufficient momentum from the SW to accelerate a spacecraft to the unprecedented speeds of 50-80 km/s after an acceleration period of about three months. Winglee et al. [2000] derived the above size requirement based on an extrapolation of their simulated results in which a system much smaller than a M2P2 was used (p. 21,074 of their study). We submit, however, that a fluid model has no validity for such a small scale size-even in the region near the plasma source! It is assumed in the MHD fluid model, normally applied to the magnetosphere, that the characteristic scale-size is much greater than the Larmor radius and ion skin depth of the SW. In the case of the M2P2, however, the size of the magnetic bubble is actually less than or, at best, comparable to, the scale of these characteristic parameters and, therefore, a kinetic approach, which addresses the smallscale physical mechanisms involved, must be used. A fully three-dimensional version of the hybrid code is used in our M2P2 (Plasma Sails) studies was originally developed by Delamere et al. [1999]. The M2P2 plasma sail is an excellent application for this hybrid code. The primary advantage of this code is the seamless interface between fluid and kinetic descriptions of the ion populations. A kinetic description is not necessary for the dense inner regions of the magnetic bubble and tremendous computational savings can be realized by treating this dense, magnetized ion population with the fluid description. It is essential, however, that the outer bubble regions be treated kinetically as well as the SW protons. Comparison of full size M2P2 simulation based on 3D MHD and kinetic models show that kinetic treatment introduces much more asymmetry to the

  9. Green Propulsion Technologies for Advanced Air Transports

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Del Rosario, Ruben

    2015-01-01

    Air transportation is critical to U.S. and Global economic vitality. However, energy and climate issues challenge aviation's ability to be sustainable in the long term. Aviation must dramatically reduce fuel use and related emissions. Energy costs to U.S. airlines nearly tripled between 1995 and 2011, and continue to be the highest percentage of operating costs. The NASA Advanced Air Transports Technology Project addresses the comprehensive challenge of enabling revolutionary energy efficiency improvements in subsonic transport aircraft combined with dramatic reductions in harmful emissions and perceived noise to facilitate sustained growth of the air transportation system. Advanced technologies and the development of unconventional aircraft systems offer the potential to achieve these improvements. The presentation will highlight the NASA vision of revolutionary systems and propulsion technologies needed to achieve these challenging goals. Specifically, the primary focus is on the N+3 generation; that is, vehicles that are three generations beyond the current state of the art, requiring mature technology solutions in the 2025-30 timeframe.

  10. Advanced supersonic technology propulsion system study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Szeliga, R.; Allan, R. D.

    1974-01-01

    This study had the objectives of determining the most promising conventional and variable cycle engine types; the effect of design cruise Mach number (2.2, 2.7 and 3.2) on a commercial supersonic transport; effect of advanced engine technology on the choice of engine cycle; and effect of utilizing hydrogen as the engine fuel. The technology required for the engines was defined, and the levels of development to ensure availability of this technology in advanced aircraft propulsion systems were assessed. No clearcut best conventional or variable cycle engine was identified. The dry bypass turbojet and the duct burning turbofans were initially selected as the best conventional engines, but later results, utilizing augmentation at takeoff, added the mixed-flow augmented turbofan as a promising contender. The modulating air flow, three-rotor variable cycle engine identified the performance features desired from VCE concepts (elimination of inlet drag and reduction in afterbody drag), but was a very heavy and complex engine.

  11. Overview of Advanced Space Propulsion Activities in the Space Environmental Effects Team at MSFC

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edwards, David; Carruth, Ralph; Vaughn, Jason; Schneider, Todd; Kamenetzky, Rachel; Gray, Perry

    2000-01-01

    Exploration of our solar system, and beyond, requires spacecraft velocities beyond our current technological level. Technologies addressing this limitation are numerous. The Space Environmental Effects (SEE) Team at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) is focused on three discipline areas of advanced propulsion; Tethers, Beamed Energy, and Plasma. This presentation will give an overview of advanced propulsion related activities in the Space Environmental Effects Team at MSFC. Advancements in the application of tethers for spacecraft propulsion were made while developing the Propulsive Small Expendable Deployer System (ProSEDS). New tether materials were developed to meet the specifications of the ProSEDS mission and new techniques had to be developed to test and characterize these tethers. Plasma contactors were developed, tested and modified to meet new requirements. Follow-on activities in tether propulsion include the Air-SEDS activity. Beamed energy activities initiated with an experimental investigation to quantify the momentum transfer subsequent to high power, 5J, ablative laser interaction with materials. The next step with this experimental investigation is to quantify non-ablative photon momentum transfer. This step was started last year and will be used to characterize the efficiency of solar sail materials before and after exposure to Space Environmental Effects (SEE). Our focus with plasma, for propulsion, concentrates on optimizing energy deposition into a magnetically confined plasma and integration of measurement techniques for determining plasma parameters. Plasma confinement is accomplished with the Marshall Magnetic Mirror (M3) device. Initial energy coupling experiments will consist of injecting a 50 amp electron beam into a target plasma. Measurements of plasma temperature and density will be used to determine the effect of changes in magnetic field structure, beam current, and gas species. Experimental observations will be compared to

  12. Advanced beamed-energy and field propulsion concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myrabo, L. N.

    1983-01-01

    Specific phenomena which might lead to major advances in payload, range and terminal velocity of very advanced vehicle propulsion are studied. The effort focuses heavily on advanced propulsion spinoffs enabled by current government-funded investigations in directed-energy technology: i.e., laser, microwave, and relativistic charged particle beams. Futuristic (post-year 2000) beamed-energy propulsion concepts which indicate exceptional promise are identified and analytically investigated. The concepts must be sufficiently developed to permit technical understanding of the physical processes involved, assessment of the enabling technologies, and evaluation of their merits over conventional systems. Propulsion concepts that can be used for manned and/or unmanned missions for purposes of solar system exploration, planetary landing, suborbital flight, transport to orbit, and escape are presented. Speculations are made on the chronology of milestones in beamed-energy propulsion development, such as in systems applications of defense, satellite orbit-raising, global aerospace transportation, and manned interplanetary carriers.

  13. Selection and Prioritization of Advanced Propulsion Technologies for Future Space Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eberle, Bill; Farris, Bob; Johnson, Les; Jones, Jonathan; Kos, Larry; Woodcock, Gordon; Brady, Hugh J. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The exploration of our solar system will require spacecraft with much greater capability than spacecraft which have been launched in the past. This is particularly true for exploration of the outer planets. Outer planet exploration requires shorter trip times, increased payload mass, and ability to orbit or land on outer planets. Increased capability requires better propulsion systems, including increased specific impulse. Chemical propulsion systems are not capable of delivering the performance required for exploration of the solar system. Future propulsion systems will be applied to a wide variety of missions with a diverse set of mission requirements. Many candidate propulsion technologies have been proposed but NASA resources do not permit development of a] of them. Therefore, we need to rationally select a few propulsion technologies for advancement, for application to future space missions. An effort was initiated to select and prioritize candidate propulsion technologies for development investment. The results of the study identified Aerocapture, 5 - 10 KW Solar Electric Ion, and Nuclear Electric Propulsion as high priority technologies. Solar Sails, 100 Kw Solar Electric Hall Thrusters, Electric Propulsion, and Advanced Chemical were identified as medium priority technologies. Plasma sails, momentum exchange tethers, and low density solar sails were identified as high risk/high payoff technologies.

  14. Advancements Toward Oil-Free Rotorcraft Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howard, Samuel A.; Bruckner, Robert J.; Radil, Kevin C.

    2010-01-01

    NASA and the Army have been working for over a decade to advance the state-of-the-art (SOA) in Oil-Free Turbomachinery with an eye toward reduced emissions and maintenance, and increased performance and efficiency among other benefits. Oil-Free Turbomachinery is enabled by oil-free gas foil bearing technology and relatively new high-temperature tribological coatings. Rotorcraft propulsion is a likely candidate to apply oil-free bearing technology because the engine size class matches current SOA for foil bearings and because foil bearings offer the opportunity for higher speeds and temperatures and lower weight, all critical issues for rotorcraft engines. This paper describes an effort to demonstrate gas foil journal bearing use in the hot section of a full-scale helicopter engine core. A production engine hot-core location is selected as the candidate foil bearing application. Rotordynamic feasibility, bearing sizing, and load capability are assessed. The results of the program will help guide future analysis and design in this area by documenting the steps required and the process utilized for successful application of oil-free technology to a full-scale engine.

  15. Advanced Electric Propulsion for Space Solar Power Satellites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oleson, Steve

    1999-01-01

    The sun tower concept of collecting solar energy in space and beaming it down for commercial use will require very affordable in-space as well as earth-to-orbit transportation. Advanced electric propulsion using a 200 kW power and propulsion system added to the sun tower nodes can provide a factor of two reduction in the required number of launch vehicles when compared to in-space cryogenic chemical systems. In addition, the total time required to launch and deliver the complete sun tower system is of the same order of magnitude using high power electric propulsion or cryogenic chemical propulsion: around one year. Advanced electric propulsion can also be used to minimize the stationkeeping propulsion system mass for this unique space platform. 50 to 100 kW class Hall, ion, magnetoplasmadynamic, and pulsed inductive thrusters are compared. High power Hall thruster technology provides the best mix of launches saved and shortest ground to Geosynchronous Earth Orbital Environment (GEO) delivery time of all the systems, including chemical. More detailed studies comparing launch vehicle costs, transfer operations costs, and propulsion system costs and complexities must be made to down-select a technology. The concept of adding electric propulsion to the sun tower nodes was compared to a concept using re-useable electric propulsion tugs for Low Earth Orbital Environment (LEO) to GEO transfer. While the tug concept would reduce the total number of required propulsion systems, more launchers and notably longer LEO to GEO and complete sun tower ground to GEO times would be required. The tugs would also need more complex, longer life propulsion systems and the ability to dock with sun tower nodes.

  16. Advanced propulsion for LEO-Moon transport. 1: A method for evaluating advanced propulsion performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stern, Martin O.

    1992-01-01

    This report describes a study to evaluate the benefits of advanced propulsion technologies for transporting materials between low Earth orbit and the Moon. A relatively conventional reference transportation system, and several other systems, each of which includes one advanced technology component, are compared in terms of how well they perform a chosen mission objective. The evaluation method is based on a pairwise life-cycle cost comparison of each of the advanced systems with the reference system. Somewhat novel and economically important features of the procedure are the inclusion not only of mass payback ratios based on Earth launch costs, but also of repair and capital acquisition costs, and of adjustments in the latter to reflect the technological maturity of the advanced technologies. The required input information is developed by panels of experts. The overall scope and approach of the study are presented in the introduction. The bulk of the paper describes the evaluation method; the reference system and an advanced transportation system, including a spinning tether in an eccentric Earth orbit, are used to illustrate it.

  17. Advanced propulsion system for hybrid vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Norrup, L. V.; Lintz, A. T.

    1980-01-01

    A number of hybrid propulsion systems were evaluated for application in several different vehicle sizes. A conceptual design was prepared for the most promising configuration. Various system configurations were parametrically evaluated and compared, design tradeoffs performed, and a conceptual design produced. Fifteen vehicle/propulsion systems concepts were parametrically evaluated to select two systems and one vehicle for detailed design tradeoff studies. A single hybrid propulsion system concept and vehicle (five passenger family sedan)were selected for optimization based on the results of the tradeoff studies. The final propulsion system consists of a 65 kW spark-ignition heat engine, a mechanical continuously variable traction transmission, a 20 kW permanent magnet axial-gap traction motor, a variable frequency inverter, a 386 kg lead-acid improved state-of-the-art battery, and a transaxle. The system was configured with a parallel power path between the heat engine and battery. It has two automatic operational modes: electric mode and heat engine mode. Power is always shared between the heat engine and battery during acceleration periods. In both modes, regenerative braking energy is absorbed by the battery.

  18. Rocket Propulsion Through Multiply Charged Ions From a Mirror Plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leung, L.; Petty, C. C.; Evans, T. E.

    2006-10-01

    Plasma propulsion is of interest for space exploration because the high exit velocity of the propellant, compared to that of chemical means, generates a high final spacecraft velocity with reduced propellant mass. This project evaluates the viability of using plasma in a magnetic mirror to produce multiply charged ions as propellant. Electron cyclotron heating of a mirror plasma produces deeply trapped hot electrons which strip heavy ions of electrons. The ambipolar potential accelerates the greatly charged ions to high velocity as they exit the end of the magnetic mirror open to space, generating thrust. We model the distribution of ion charge states to include all relevant atomic processes using the conservation of particle and energy equations in tandem with cross-sections from the ADAS database. The system of equations is then optimized to determine the feasibility of plasma propulsion. The results of this model in a high- density rocket regime are benchmarked against experimental data in low-density mirror plasmas.

  19. Space Experiments to Advance Beamed Energy Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johansen, Donald G.

    2010-05-01

    High power microwave sources are now available and usable, with modification, or beamed energy propulsion experiments in space. As output windows and vacuum seals are not needed space is a natural environment for high power vacuum tubes. Application to space therefore improves reliability and performance but complicates testing and qualification. Low power communications satellite devices (TWT, etc) have already been through the adapt-to-space design cycle and this history is a useful pathway for high power devices such as gyrotrons. In this paper, space experiments are described for low earth orbit (LEO) and lunar environment. These experiments are precursors to space application for beamed energy propulsion using high power microwaves. Power generation and storage using cryogenic systems are important elements of BEP systems and also have an important role as part of BEP experiments in the space environment.

  20. Advancing Sensor Technology for Aerospace Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Figueroa, Fernando; Mercer, Carolyn R.

    2002-01-01

    NASA's Stennis Space Center (SSC) and Glenn Research Center (GRC) participate in the development of technologies for propulsion testing and propulsion applications in air and space transportation. Future transportation systems and the test facilities needed to develop and sustain them are becoming increasingly complex. Sensor technology is a fundamental pillar that makes possible development of complex systems that must operate in automatic mode (closed loop systems), or even in assisted-autonomous mode (highly self-sufficient systems such as planetary exploration spacecraft). Hence, a great deal of effort is dedicated to develop new sensors and related technologies to be used in research facilities, test facilities, and in vehicles and equipment. This paper describes sensor technologies being developed and in use at SSC and GRC, including new technologies in integrated health management involving sensors, components, processes, and vehicles.

  1. Advanced gel propulsion controls for kill vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yasuhara, W. K.; Olson, A.; Finato, S.

    1993-06-01

    A gel propulsion control concept for tactical applications is reviewed, and the status of the individual component technologies currently under development at the Aerojet Propulsion Division is discussed. It is concluded that a gel propellant Divert and Attitude Control Subsystem (DACS) provides a safe, insensitive munitions compliant alternative to current liquid Theater Missile Defense (TMD) DACS approaches. The gel kill vehicle (KV) control system packages a total impulse typical of a tactical weapon interceptor for the ground- or sea-based TMD systems. High density packaging makes it possible to increase firepower and to eliminate long-term high pressure gas storage associated with bipropellant systems. The integrated control subsystem technologies encompass solid propellant gas generators, insulated composite overwrapped propellant tanks, lightweight endoatmospheric thrusters, and insensitive munition gel propellants, which meet the requirements of a deployable, operationally safe KV.

  2. Fusion for Space Propulsion and Plasma Liner Driven MTF

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thio, Y.C. Francis; Rodgers, Stephen L. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    in the light of significant development of the enabling pulsed power component technologies that have occurred in the last two decades because of defense and other energy requirements. The extreme states of matter required to produce fusion reactions may be more readily realizable in the pulsed states with less system mass than in steady states. Significant saving in system mass may result in pulsed fusion systems using plasmas in the appropriate density regimes. Magnetized target fusion, which attempts to combine the favorable attributes of magnetic confinement and inertial compression-containment into one single integrated fusion scheme, appears to have benefits that are worth exploring for propulsion application.

  3. The NASA Advanced Exploration Systems Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Mitchell, Doyce P.; Kim, Tony; Emrich, William J.; Hickman, Robert R.; Gerrish, Harold P.; Doughty, Glen; Belvin, Anthony; Clement, Steven; Borowski, Stanley K.; Scott, John; Power, Kevin P.

    2015-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation NTP system could provide high thrust at a specific impulse (Isp) above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of a first generation NTP in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation systems.

  4. Advanced propulsion system concept for hybrid vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bhate, S.; Chen, H.; Dochat, G.

    1980-01-01

    A series hybrid system, utilizing a free piston Stirling engine with a linear alternator, and a parallel hybrid system, incorporating a kinematic Stirling engine, are analyzed for various specified reference missions/vehicles ranging from a small two passenger commuter vehicle to a van. Parametric studies for each configuration, detail tradeoff studies to determine engine, battery and system definition, short term energy storage evaluation, and detail life cycle cost studies were performed. Results indicate that the selection of a parallel Stirling engine/electric, hybrid propulsion system can significantly reduce petroleum consumption by 70 percent over present conventional vehicles.

  5. Advanced propulsion concepts study: Comparative study of solar electric propulsion and laser electric propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Forward, R. L.

    1975-01-01

    Solar electric propulsion (SEP) and laser electric propulsion (LEP) was compared. The LEP system configuration consists of an 80 kW visible laser source on earth, transmitting via an 8 m diameter adaptively controlled phased array through the atmosphere to a 4 m diameter synchronous relay mirror that tracks the LEP spacecraft. The only significant change in the SEP spacecraft for an LEP mission is the replacement of the two 3.7 m by 33.5 m solar cell arrays with a single 8 m diameter laser photovoltaic array. The solar cell array weight is decreased from 320 kg to 120 kg for an increase in payload of 200 kg and a decrease in specific mass of the power system from 20.5 kg/kW to 7.8 kg/kW.

  6. Magnetized Target Fusion Propulsion: Plasma Injectors for MTF Guns

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Griffin, Steven T.

    2003-01-01

    To achieve increased payload size and decreased trip time for interplanetary travel, a low mass, high specific impulse, high thrust propulsion system is required. This suggests the need for research into fusion as a source of power and high temperature plasma. The plasma would be deflected by magnetic fields to provide thrust. Magnetized Target Fusion (MTF) research consists of several related investigations into these topics. These include the orientation and timing of the plasma guns and the convergence and interface development of the "pusher" plasma. Computer simulations of the gun as it relates to plasma initiation and repeatability are under investigation. One of the items under development is the plasma injector. This is a surface breakdown driven plasma generator designed to function at very low pressures. The performance, operating conditions and limitations of these injectors need to be determined.

  7. Brief review on plasma propulsion with neutralizer-free systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rafalskyi, D.; Aanesland, A.

    2016-06-01

    Electric space propulsion is an intensively developing field addressing new demands and challenges for long-term spacecraft operation. Many novel plasma propulsion concepts aim to find new acceleration principles, use alternative propellants, upscale or downscale thrusters for large thrust or for very small spacecrafts etc. In this work we review the neutralizer-free concepts, where both positive and negative particles are extracted and accelerated from plasmas. We can divide these concepts into three main categories, defined by their acceleration principle: (i) neutral beam generation, (ii) plasma acceleration/expansion and (iii) bipolar beam acceleration. We describe the basic physical principles and evaluate the main advantages and drawbacks in view of general space applications. We also present here further detail on a recent concept where RF voltages are used to accelerate quasi-simultaneously positive ions and electrons from the same source.

  8. Antiproton Trapping for Advanced Space Propulsion Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Gerald A.

    1998-01-01

    The Summary of Research parallels the Statement of Work (Appendix I) submitted with the proposal, and funded effective Feb. 1, 1997 for one year. A proposal was submitted to CERN in October, 1996 to carry out an experiment on the synthesis and study of fundamental properties of atomic antihydrogen. Since confined atomic antihydrogen is potentially the most powerful and elegant source of propulsion energy known, its confinement and properties are of great interest to the space propulsion community. Appendix II includes an article published in the technical magazine Compressed Air, June 1997, which describes CERN antiproton facilities, and ATHENA. During the period of this grant, Prof. Michael Holzscheiter served as spokesman for ATHENA and, in collaboration with Prof. Gerald Smith, worked on the development of the antiproton confinement trap, which is an important part of the ATHENA experiment. Appendix III includes a progress report submitted to CERN on March 12, 1997 concerning development of the ATHENA detector. Section 4.1 reviews technical responsibilities within the ATHENA collaboration, including the Antiproton System, headed by Prof. Holzscheiter. The collaboration was advised (see Appendix IV) on June 13, 1997 that the CERN Research Board had approved ATHENA for operation at the new Antiproton Decelerator (AD), presently under construction. First antiproton beams are expected to be delivered to experiments in about one year. Progress toward assembly of the ATHENA detector and initial testing expected in 1999 has been excellent. Appendix V includes a copy of the minutes of the most recently documented collaboration meeting held at CERN of October 24, 1997, which provides more information on development of systems, including the antiproton trapping apparatus. On February 10, 1998 Prof. Smith gave a 3 hour lecture on the Physics of Antimatter, as part of the Physics for the Third Millennium Lecture Series held at MSFC. Included in Appendix VI are notes and

  9. Characteristics of volume expansion of laser plasma for efficient propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uchida, Shigeaki; Hashimoto, Kazuhisa; Fujita, Kazuhisa; Niino, Masayuki; Ashizuka, Takashi; Kawashima, Nobuki

    2002-09-01

    Laser propulsion has many advantages over other conventional methods of producing thrust in space applications. For example, laser energy can be delivered to a remote objects such as space debris which otherwise is impossible to make thrust on its surfaces to remove from the orbits. However, essential advantage of laser propulsion lies in the fact that the characteristics of laser propulsion can be controlled over wide range of parameters by changing laser irradiation conditions. This advantage is based on the capability of controlling specific energy carried by propellant. The specific energy is a key parameter of thrust performance since it determines the propellant temperature or expanding velocity and thus propulsion efficiency. A number of researches so far conducted have treated laser plasma interactions created on solid surfaces with laser parameters such as wavelength, pulse width, intensity, as well as ambient gas pressure. The present study will give a new insight to laser plasma interactions and/or new mechanism of laser thrust generation. Laser energy is deposited inside solid target and, as an initial condition, confined by solid material. Since the confinement time is an order of milli-second, both shock waves and thermal conduction can tale part in the energy transfer process and therefore, give more controllable parameters over the thrust characteristics. In this manner, specific energy carried by target material or propellant can be controlled by changing the depth of energy deposition region. This will give a new dimension of controlling laser plasma characteristics for laser propulsion. In this paper, experimental results and physical insights will be presented as to propelled mass and velocity dependence on laser energy and temporal behavior of impulse generation, as well as enhancement of impact generation over the conventional ablation scheme.

  10. Liquid Oxygen/Liquid Methane Propulsion and Cryogenic Advanced Development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klem, Mark D.; Smith, Timothy D.; Wadel, Mary F.; Meyer, Michael L.; Free, James M.; Cikanek, Harry A., III

    2011-01-01

    Exploration Systems Architecture Study conducted by NASA in 2005 identified the liquid oxygen (LOx)/liquid methane (LCH4) propellant combination as a prime candidate for the Crew Exploration Vehicle Service Module propulsion and for later use for ascent stage propulsion of the lunar lander. Both the Crew Exploration Vehicle and Lunar Lander were part the Constellation architecture, which had the objective to provide global sustained lunar human exploration capability. From late 2005 through the end of 2010, NASA and industry matured advanced development designs for many components that could be employed in relatively high thrust, high delta velocity, pressure fed propulsion systems for these two applications. The major investments were in main engines, reaction control engines, and the devices needed for cryogenic fluid management such as screens, propellant management devices, thermodynamic vents, and mass gauges. Engine and thruster developments also included advanced high reliability low mass igniters. Extensive tests were successfully conducted for all of these elements. For the thrusters and engines, testing included sea level and altitude conditions. This advanced development provides a mature technology base for future liquid oxygen/liquid methane pressure fed space propulsion systems. This paper documents the design and test efforts along with resulting hardware and test results.

  11. Advanced Concepts: Aneutronic Fusion Power and Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chapman, John J.

    2012-01-01

    Aneutronic Fusion for In-Space thrust, power. Clean energy & potential nuclear gains. Fusion plant concepts, potential to use advanced fuels. Methods to harness ionic momentum for high Isp thrust plus direct power conversion into electricity will be presented.

  12. Advanced Space Propulsion System Flowfield Modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Sheldon

    1998-01-01

    Solar thermal upper stage propulsion systems currently under development utilize small low chamber pressure/high area ratio nozzles. Consequently, the resulting flow in the nozzle is highly viscous, with the boundary layer flow comprising a significant fraction of the total nozzle flow area. Conventional uncoupled flow methods which treat the nozzle boundary layer and inviscid flowfield separately by combining the two calculations via the influence of the boundary layer displacement thickness on the inviscid flowfield are not accurate enough to adequately treat highly viscous nozzles. Navier Stokes models such as VNAP2 can treat these flowfields but cannot perform a vacuum plume expansion for applications where the exhaust plume produces induced environments on adjacent structures. This study is built upon recently developed artificial intelligence methods and user interface methodologies to couple the VNAP2 model for treating viscous nozzle flowfields with a vacuum plume flowfield model (RAMP2) that is currently a part of the Plume Environment Prediction (PEP) Model. This study integrated the VNAP2 code into the PEP model to produce an accurate, practical and user friendly tool for calculating highly viscous nozzle and exhaust plume flowfields.

  13. Advanced Filter Technology For Nuclear Thermal Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Castillon, Erick

    2015-01-01

    The Scrubber System focuses on using HEPA filters and carbon filtration to purify the exhaust of a Nuclear Thermal Propulsion engine of its aerosols and radioactive particles; however, new technology may lend itself to alternate filtration options, which may lead to reduction in cost while at the same time have the same filtering, if not greater, filtering capabilities, as its predecessors. Extensive research on various types of filtration methods was conducted with only four showing real promise: ionization, cyclonic separation, classic filtration, and host molecules. With the four methods defined, more research was needed to find the devices suitable for each method. Each filtration option was matched with a device: cyclonic separators for the method of the same name, electrostatic separators for ionization, HEGA filters, and carcerands for the host molecule method. Through many hours of research, the best alternative for aerosol filtration was determined to be the electrostatic precipitator because of its high durability against flow rate and its ability to cleanse up to 99.99% of contaminants as small as 0.001 micron. Carcerands, which are the only alternative to filtering radioactive particles, were found to be non-existent commercially because of their status as a "work in progress" at research institutions. Nevertheless, the conclusions after the research were that HEPA filters is recommended as the best option for filtering aerosols and carbon filtration is best for filtering radioactive particles.

  14. The Economics of Advanced In-Space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bangalore, Manju; Dankanich, John

    2016-01-01

    The cost of access to space is the single biggest driver is commercial space sector. NASA continues to invest in both launch technology and in-space propulsion. Low-cost launch systems combined with advanced in-space propulsion offer the greatest potential market capture. Launch market capture is critical to national security and has a significant impact on domestic space sector revenue. NASA typically focuses on pushing the limits on performance. However, the commercial market is driven by maximum net revenue (profits). In order to maximum the infusion of NASA investments, the impact on net revenue must be known. As demonstrated by Boeing's dual launch, the Falcon 9 combined with all Electric Propulsion (EP) can dramatically shift the launch market from foreign to domestic providers.

  15. Experimental research on electrical propulsion. Note 2: Experimental research on a plasma jet with vortex type stabilization for propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robotti, A. C.; Oggero, M.

    1985-01-01

    Results of experimental electric propulsion research are presented. A plasma generator, with an arc stabilized by an air vortex is examined. The heat transfer efficiency between arc and fluid environment at a varying current and flow rate is discussed.

  16. Evaluation of advanced propulsion options for the next manned transportation system: Propulsion evolution study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spears, L. T.; Kramer, R. D.

    1990-01-01

    The objectives were to examine launch vehicle applications and propulsion requirements for potential future manned space transportation systems and to support planning toward the evolution of Space Shuttle Main Engine (SSME) and Space Transportation Main Engine (STME) engines beyond their current or initial launch vehicle applications. As a basis for examinations of potential future manned launch vehicle applications, we used three classes of manned space transportation concepts currently under study: Space Transportation System Evolution, Personal Launch System (PLS), and Advanced Manned Launch System (AMLS). Tasks included studies of launch vehicle applications and requirements for hydrogen-oxygen rocket engines; the development of suggestions for STME engine evolution beyond the mid-1990's; the development of suggestions for STME evolution beyond the Advanced Launch System (ALS) application; the study of booster propulsion options, including LOX-Hydrocarbon options; the analysis of the prospects and requirements for utilization of a single engine configuration over the full range of vehicle applications, including manned vehicles plus ALS and Shuttle C; and a brief review of on-going and planned LOX-Hydrogen propulsion technology activities.

  17. Small Low Mass Advanced PBR's for Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Powell, J. R.; Todosow, M.; Ludewig, H.

    1994-07-01

    The advanced Particle Bed Reactor (PBR) to be described in this paper is characterized by relatively low power, and low cost, while still maintaining competition values for thrust/weight, specific impulse and operating times. The mission parameter which this reactor attempts to satisfy are: Thrust (N) = 6.8 (4); Specific Impulse (S) = 875; Total Full Thrust Time (S) = 1500; Thrust/Weight (unshielded) = 20 These requirements imply the following reactor design goals: Power (MW) = 400; Mixed Mean Outlet Temperature (K) = 3000; Chamber Pressure (Mpa) = 7 The following discussion will cover concept feasibility analyses, mass estimates, and a conclusion.

  18. Development of Metal Matrix Composites for NASA's Advanced Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, J.; Elam, S.

    2001-01-01

    The state-of-the-art development of several Metal Matrix Composites (MMC) for NASA's advanced propulsion systems will be presented. The goal is to provide an overview of NASA-Marshall Space Flight Center's on-going activities in MMC components for advanced liquid rocket engines such as the X-33 vehicle's Aerospike engine and X-34's Fastrac engine. The focus will be on lightweight, low cost, and environmental compatibility with oxygen and hydrogen of key MMC materials, within each of NASA's new propulsion application, that will provide a high payoff for NASA's Reusable Launch Vehicles and space access vehicles. In order to fabricate structures from MMC, effective joining methods must be developed to join MMC to the same or to different monolithic alloys. Therefore, a qualitative assessment of MMC's welding and joining techniques will be outlined.

  19. Development of sensors for ceramic components in advanced propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Atkinson, William H.; Cyr, M. A.; Strange, R. R.

    1994-01-01

    The 'Development of Sensors for Ceramics Components in Advanced Propulsion Systems' program was divided into two phases. The objectives of Phase 1 were to analyze, evaluate and recommend sensor concepts for the measurement of surface temperature, strain and heat flux on ceramic components for advanced propulsion systems. The results of this effort were previously published in NASA CR-182111. As a result of Phase 1, three approaches were recommended for further development: pyrometry, thin-film sensors, and thermographic phosphors. The objectives of Phase 2 were to fabricate and conduct laboratory demonstration tests of these systems. A summary report of the Phase 2 effort, together with conclusions and recommendations for each of the categories evaluated, has been submitted to NASA. Emittance tests were performed on six materials furnished by NASA Lewis Research Center. Measurements were made of various surfaces at high temperature using a Thermogage emissometer. This report describes the emittance test program and presents a summary of the results.

  20. Three-dimensional modeling of an ideal nozzle for advanced propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schillo, Kevin

    Advanced propulsion systems such as pulsed fission and fusion rockets hold the potential for opening up the solar system in ways few other propulsion technologies can. The University of Alabama in Huntsville is exploring one such concept in the form of pulsed z-pinch fusion propulsion. One of the technical hurdles to utilizing any pulsed fusion concept is the conversion from an isotropic expansion of a plasma into directed motion to produce thrust. This thesis investigates three dimensional modeling of pulsed nozzle performance in which the initial gas is a cylindrical gas column, emulating the initial conditions found in pulsed plasma discharges common in fusion experiments. Two nozzle geometries were investigated, a pusher plate and a hemispherical nozzle. Simulations of these systems were conducted using SPFMax, a recently developed smoothed particle hydrodynamics code (SPH). The SPH method was chosen because it is naturally adaptive and accurate for resolving the vacuum/gas boundary which always exists in pulsed fusion systems. Argon plasma was used to compare the two systems to determine which offers better performance. The plasma was also subjected to a wide variety of shapes and initial conditions to determine what would offer higher performance for the two systems.

  1. Advanced Electric Propulsion for RLV Launched Geosynchronous Spacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oleson, Steven

    1999-01-01

    Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP) when used for station keeping and final orbit insertion has been shown to increase a geostationary satellite's payload when launched by existing expendable launch vehicles. In the case of reusable launch vehicles or expendable launch vehicles where an upper stage is an expensive option, this methodology can be modified by using the existing on-board apogee chemical system to perform a perigee burn and then letting the electric propulsion system complete the transfer to geostationary orbit. The elimination of upper stages using on-board chemical and electric propulsion systems was thus examined for GEO spacecraft. Launch vehicle step-down from an Atlas IIAR to a Delta 7920 (no upper stage) was achieved using expanded on-board chemical tanks, 40 kW payload power for electric propulsion, and a 60 day elliptical to GEO SEP orbit insertion. Optimal combined chemical and electric trajectories were found using SEPSPOT. While Hall and ion thrusters provided launch vehicle step-down and even more payload for longer insertion times, NH3 arcjets had insufficient performance to allow launch vehicle step-down. Degradation levels were only 5% to 7% for launch step-down cases using advanced solar arrays. Results were parameterized to allow comparisons for future reusable launch vehicles. Results showed that for an 8 W/kg initial power/launch mass power density spacecraft, 50% to 100% more payload can be launched using this method.

  2. Advanced ignition and propulsion technology program

    SciTech Connect

    Oldenborg, R.; Early, J.; Lester, C.

    1998-11-01

    This is the final report of a three-year, Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) project at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). Reliable engine re-ignition plays a crucial role in enabling commercial and military aircraft to fly safely at high altitudes. This project addressed research elements critical to the optimization of laser-based igniter. The effort initially involved a collaborative research and development agreement with B.F. Goodrich Aerospace and Laser Fare, Inc. The work involved integrated experiments with theoretical modeling to provide a basic understanding of the chemistry and physics controlling the laser-induced ignition of fuel aerosols produced by turbojet engine injectors. In addition, the authors defined advanced laser igniter configurations that minimize laser packaging size, weight, complexity and power consumption. These innovative ignition concepts were shown to reliably ignite jet fuel aerosols over a broad range of fuel/air mixture and a t fuel temperatures as low as -40 deg F. The demonstrated fuel ignition performance was highly superior to that obtained by the state-of-the-art, laser-spark ignition method utilizing comparable laser energy. The authors also developed a laser-based method that effectively removes optically opaque deposits of fuel hydrocarbon combustion residues from laser window surfaces. Seven patents have been either issued or are pending that resulted from the technology developments within this project.

  3. Pulsed plasma propulsion system for North-South stationkeeping

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guman, W. J.; Palumbo, D. J.

    1976-01-01

    A completely integrated pulsed plasma propulsion system for North-South stationkeeping has been developed. System testing on a thrust balance has provided following new results: (1) A simple, helically coiled, spring-fed propellant subsystem for 38,284 lb-s (166,000 N-S) total impulse is feasible; (2) The propulsive performance level is compatible with North-South stationkeeping requirements; (3) Power conditioning is as simple as that of the space flight proven microthruster system; (4) Vacuum compatible, high energy density capacitors (40 joules/lb) capacitors have been developed and tested as part of the system; (5) 10,000 lb-sec of total impulse has been generated. Future improvements will include reducing electrode erosion, improving the structural rigidity of the assembly and continuously operating the system until 37,000 lb-sec of total impulse have been generated.

  4. Modular Pulsed Plasma Electric Propulsion System for Cubesats

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Perez, Andres Dono; Gazulla, Oriol Tintore; Teel, George Lewis; Mai, Nghia; Lukas, Joseph; Haque, Sumadra; Uribe, Eddie; Keidar, Michael; Agasid, Elwood

    2014-01-01

    Current capabilities of CubeSats must be improved in order to perform more ambitious missions. Electric propulsion systems will play a key role due to their large specific impulse. Compared to other propulsion alternatives, their simplicity allows an easier miniaturization and manufacturing of autonomous modules into the nano and pico-satellite platform. Pulsed Plasma Thrusters (PPTs) appear as one of the most promising technologies for the near term. The utilization of solid and non-volatile propellants, their low power requirements and their proven reliability in the large scale make them great candidates for rapid implementation. The main challenges are the integration and miniaturization of all the electronic circuitry into a printed circuit board (PCB) that can satisfy the strict requirements that CubeSats present. NASA Ames and the George Washington University have demonstrated functionality and control of three discrete Micro-Cathode Arc Thrusters (CAT) using a bench top configuration that was compatible with the ARC PhoneSat Bus. This demonstration was successfully conducted in a vaccum chamber at the ARC Environmental Test Laboratory. A new effort will integrate a low power Plasma Processing Unit and two plasma thrusters onto a single printed circuit board that will utilize less than 13 U of Bus volume. The target design will be optimized for the accommodation into the PhoneSatEDISON Demonstration of SmallSatellite Networks (EDSN) bus as it uses the same software interface application, which was demonstrated in the previous task. This paper describes the design, integration and architecture of the proposed propulsion subsystem for a planned Technology Demonstration Mission. In addition, a general review of the Pulsed Plasma technology available for CubeSats is presented in order to assess the necessary challenges to overcome further development.

  5. Towards Run-time Assurance of Advanced Propulsion Algorithms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wong, Edmond; Schierman, John D.; Schlapkohl, Thomas; Chicatelli, Amy

    2014-01-01

    This paper covers the motivation and rationale for investigating the application of run-time assurance methods as a potential means of providing safety assurance for advanced propulsion control systems. Certification is becoming increasingly infeasible for such systems using current verification practices. Run-time assurance systems hold the promise of certifying these advanced systems by continuously monitoring the state of the feedback system during operation and reverting to a simpler, certified system if anomalous behavior is detected. The discussion will also cover initial efforts underway to apply a run-time assurance framework to NASA's model-based engine control approach. Preliminary experimental results are presented and discussed.

  6. Propulsion

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Air and Space, 1978

    1978-01-01

    An introductory discussion of aircraft propulsion is included along with diagrams and pictures of piston, turbojet, turboprop, turbofan, and jet engines. Also, a table on chemical propulsion is included. (MDR)

  7. Plasma Propulsion Testing Capabilities at Arnold Engineering Development Center

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Polzin, Kurt A.; Dawbarn, Albert; Moeller, Trevor

    2007-01-01

    This paper describes the results of a series of experiments aimed at quantifying the plasma propulsion testing capabilities of a 12-ft diameter vacuum facility (12V) at USAF-Arnold Engineering Development Center (AEDC). Vacuum is maintained in the 12V facility by cryogenic panels lining the interior of the chamber. The pumping capability of these panels was shown to be great enough to support plasma thrusters operating at input electrical power >20 kW. In addition, a series of plasma diagnostics inside the chamber allowed for measurement of plasma parameters at different spatial locations, providing information regarding the chamber's effect on the global plasma thruster flowfield. The plasma source used in this experiment was Hall thruster manufactured by Busek Co. The thruster was operated at up to 20 kW steady-state power in both a lower current and higher current mode. The vacuum level in the chamber never rose above 9 x 10(exp -6) torr during the course of testing. Langmuir probes, ion flux probes, and Faraday cups were used to quantify the plasma parameters in the chamber. We present the results of these measurements and estimates of pumping speed based on the background pressure level and thruster propellant mass flow rate.

  8. Advanced Propulsion and TPS for a Rapidly-Prototyped CEV

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hudson, Gary C.

    2005-02-01

    Transformational Space Corporation (t/Space) is developing for NASA the initial designs for the Crew Exploration Vehicle family, focusing on a Launch CEV for transporting NASA and civilian passengers from Earth to orbit. The t/Space methodology is rapid prototyping of major vehicle systems, and deriving detailed specifications from the resulting hardware, avoiding "written-in-advance" specs that can force the costly invention of new capabilities simply to meet such specs. A key technology shared by the CEV family is Vapor Pressurized propulsion (Vapak) for simplicity and reliability, which provides electrical power, life support gas and a heat sink in addition to propulsion. The CEV family also features active transpiration cooling of re-entry surfaces (for reusability) backed up by passive thermal protection.

  9. An advanced optical system for laser ablation propulsion in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergstue, Grant; Fork, Richard; Reardon, Patrick

    2014-03-01

    We propose a novel space-based ablation driven propulsion engine concept utilizing transmitted energy in the form of a series of ultra-short optical pulses. Key differences are generating the pulses at the transmitting spacecraft and the safe delivery of that energy to the receiving spacecraft for propulsion. By expanding the beam diameter during transmission in space, the energy can propagate at relatively low intensity and then be refocused and redistributed to create an array of ablation sites at the receiver. The ablation array strategy allows greater control over flight dynamics and eases thermal management. Research efforts for this transmission and reception of ultra-short optical pulses include: (1) optical system design; (2) electrical system requirements; (3) thermal management; (4) structured energy transmission safety. Research has also been focused on developing an optical switch concept for the multiplexing of the ultra-short pulses. This optical switch strategy implements multiple reflectors polished into a rotating momentum wheel device to combine the pulses from different laser sources. The optical system design must minimize the thermal load on any one optical element. Initial specifications and modeling for the optical system are being produced using geometrical ray-tracing software to give a better understanding of the optical requirements. In regards to safety, we have advanced the retro-reflective beam locking strategy to include look-ahead capabilities for long propagation distances. Additional applications and missions utilizing multiplexed pulse transmission are also presented. Because the research is in early development, it provides an opportunity for new and valuable advances in the area of transmitted energy for propulsion as well as encourages joint international efforts. Researchers from different countries can cooperate in order to find constructive and safe uses of ordered pulse transmission for propulsion in future space

  10. A tandem mirror hybrid plume plasma propulsion facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang-Diaz, F. R.; Yang, T. F.; Krueger, W. A.; Peng, S.; Urbahn, J.; Yao, X.; Griffin, D.

    1988-01-01

    A concept in electrodeless plasma propulsion, which is also capable of delivering a variable Isp, is presented. The concept involves a three-stage system of plasma injection, heating, and subsequent ejection through a magnetic nozzle. The nozzle produces the hybrid plume by the coaxial injection of hypersonic neutral gas. The gas layer, thus formed, protects the material walls from the hot plasma and, through increased collisions, helps detach it from the diverging magnetic field. The physics of this concept is evaluated numerically through full spatial and temporal simulations; these explore the operating characteristics of such a device over a wide region of parameter space. An experimental facility to study the plasma dynamics in the hybrid plume was built. The device consists of a tandem mirror operating in an asymmetric mode. A later upgrade of this system will incorporate a cold plasma injector at one end of the machine. Initial experiments involve the full characterization of the operating envelope, as well as extensive measurements of plasma properties at the exhaust. The results of the numerical simulations are described.

  11. Recent Advances in Solar Sail Propulsion at NASA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Les; Young, Roy M.; Montgomery, Edward E., IV

    2006-01-01

    Supporting NASA's Science Mission Directorate, the In-Space Propulsion Technology Program is developing solar sail propulsion for use in robotic science and exploration of the solar system. Solar sail propulsion will provide longer on-station operation, increased scientific payload mass fraction, and access to previously inaccessible orbits for multiple potential science missions. Two different 20-meter solar sail systems were produced and successfully completed functional vacuum testing last year in NASA Glenn's Space Power Facility at Plum Brook Station, Ohio. The sails were designed and developed by ATK Space Systems and L'Garde, respectively. These sail systems consist of a central structure with four deployable booms that support the sails. This sail designs are robust enough for deployments in a one atmosphere, one gravity environment, and are scalable to much larger solar sails-perhaps as much as 150 meters on a side. In addition, computation modeling and analytical simulations have been performed to assess the scalability of the technology to the large sizes (>150 meters) required for first generation solar sails missions. Life and space environmental effects testing of sail and component materials are also nearly complete. This paper will summarize recent technology advancements in solar sails and their successful ambient and vacuum testing.

  12. Recent Advances in Solar Sail Propulsion Systems at NASA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Les

    2006-01-01

    Supporting NASA's Science Mission Directorate, the In-Space Propulsion Technology Program is developing solar sail propulsion for use in robotic science and exploration of the solar system. Solar sail propulsion has the potential to provide longer on-station operation, increased scientific payload mass fraction, and access to previously inaccessible orbits for multiple potential science missions. Two different 20-meter solar sail systems were produced and successfully completed functional vacuum testing last year in NASA Glenn s Space Power Facility at Plum Brook Station Ohio. The sails were designed and developed by ATK Space Systems and L'Garde, respectively. The sail systems consist of a central structure with four deployable booms that support the sails. The sail designs are robust enough for deployments in a one atmosphere, one gravity environment and are scalable to much larger solar sails - perhaps as large as 150 meters on a side. In addition, computational modeling and analytical simulations have been performed to assess the scalability of the technology to the large sizes (150 meters) required to implement the first generation of missions using solar sails. Life and space environmental effects testing of sail and component materials are also nearly complete. This paper will summarize recent technology advancements in solar sails and their successful ambient and vacuum environment testing.

  13. Advanced Propulsion System Studies for General Aviation Aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eisenberg, Joseph D. (Technical Monitor); German, Jon

    2003-01-01

    This final report addresses the following topics: Market Impact Analysis (1) assessment of general aviation, including commuter/regional, aircraft market impact due to incorporation of advanced technology propulsion system on acquisition and operating costs, job creation and/or manpower demand, and future fleet size; (2) selecting an aircraft and engine for the study by focusing on the next generation 19-passenger commuter and the Williams International FJ44 turbofan engine growth. Propulsion System Analysis Conducted mission analysis studies and engine cycle analysis to define a new commuter mission and required engine performance, define acquisition and operating costs and, select engine configuration and initiated preliminary design for hardware modifications required. Propulsion System Benefits (1) assessed and defined engine emissions improvements, (2) assessed and defined noise reduction potential and, (3) conducted a cost analysis impact study. Review of Relevant NASA Programs Conducted literature searches using NERAC and NASA RECON services for related technology in the emissions and acoustics area. Preliminary Technology Development Plans Defined plan to incorporate technology improvements for an FJ44-2 growth engine in performance, emissions, and noise suppression.

  14. Plasma simulation in a hybrid ion electric propulsion system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jugroot, Manish; Christou, Alex

    2015-04-01

    An exciting possibility for the next generation of satellite technology is the microsatellite. These satellites, ranging from 10-500 kg, can offer advantages in cost, reduced risk, and increased functionality for a variety of missions. For station keeping and control of these satellites, a suitable compact and high efficiency thruster is required. Electrostatic propulsion provides a promising solution for microsatellite thrust due to their high specific impulse. The rare gas propellant is ionized into plasma and generates a beam of high speed ions by electrostatic processes. A concept explored in this work is a hybrid combination of dc ion engines and hall thrusters to overcome space-charge and lifetime limitations of current ion thruster technologies. A multiphysics space and time-dependent formulation was used to investigate and understand the underlying physical phenomena. Several regions and time scales of the plasma have been observed and will be discussed.

  15. Liquid Metal Propellant Feed System for Plasma Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markusic, T. E.

    2004-01-01

    High-power plasma thrusters that utilize molten metallic propellants (e.g., the Lithium Lorentz Force Accelerator) are currently being investigated as a primary propulsion option for in-space nuclear-electric systems. A critical component of the thruster is the propellant feed system, which must reliably and accurately pump liquid metal into the thruster discharge chamber. We present design details and calibration results for a compact liquid metal propellant feed system that contains no moving parts, for use in laboratory testing of plasma thrusters. Feed line pressure is maintained using an MHD flow coupler, and the flow rate is monitored using a simple voltage divider, which is submerged in the propellant reservoir. Results for lithium and gallium propellants show capability to meter propellant at flow rates up to 10 +/- 0.1 mg/s.

  16. Advanced instrumentation for next-generation aerospace propulsion control systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barkhoudarian, S.; Cross, G. S.; Lorenzo, Carl F.

    1993-01-01

    New control concepts for the next generation of advanced air-breathing and rocket engines and hypersonic combined-cycle propulsion systems are analyzed. The analysis provides a database on the instrumentation technologies for advanced control systems and cross matches the available technologies for each type of engine to the control needs and applications of the other two types of engines. Measurement technologies that are considered to be ready for implementation include optical surface temperature sensors, an isotope wear detector, a brushless torquemeter, a fiberoptic deflectometer, an optical absorption leak detector, the nonintrusive speed sensor, and an ultrasonic triducer. It is concluded that all 30 advanced instrumentation technologies considered can be recommended for further development to meet need of the next generation of jet-, rocket-, and hypersonic-engine control systems.

  17. Advanced instrumentation for next-generation aerospace propulsion control systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barkhoudarian, S.; Cross, G. S.; Lorenzo, Carl F.

    1993-06-01

    New control concepts for the next generation of advanced air-breathing and rocket engines and hypersonic combined-cycle propulsion systems are analyzed. The analysis provides a database on the instrumentation technologies for advanced control systems and cross matches the available technologies for each type of engine to the control needs and applications of the other two types of engines. Measurement technologies that are considered to be ready for implementation include optical surface temperature sensors, an isotope wear detector, a brushless torquemeter, a fiberoptic deflectometer, an optical absorption leak detector, the nonintrusive speed sensor, and an ultrasonic triducer. It is concluded that all 30 advanced instrumentation technologies considered can be recommended for further development to meet need of the next generation of jet-, rocket-, and hypersonic-engine control systems.

  18. Advanced Models for Aeroelastic Analysis of Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keith, Theo G., Jr.; Mahajan, Aparajit

    1996-01-01

    This report describes an integrated, multidisciplinary simulation capability for aeroelastic analysis and optimization of advanced propulsion systems. This research is intended to improve engine development, acquisition, and maintenance costs. One of the proposed simulations is aeroelasticity of blades, cowls, and struts in an ultra-high bypass fan. These ducted fans are expected to have significant performance, fuel, and noise improvements over existing engines. An interface program was written to use modal information from COBSTAN and NASTRAN blade models in aeroelastic analysis with a single rotation ducted fan aerodynamic code.

  19. Lightweight, Efficient Power Converters for Advanced Turboelectric Aircraft Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hennessy, Michael J.

    2014-01-01

    NASA is investigating advanced turboelectric aircraft propulsion systems that use superconducting motors to drive multiple distributed turbofans. Conventional electric motors are too large and heavy to be practical for this application; therefore, superconducting motors are required. In order to improve aircraft maneuverability, variable-speed power converters are required to throttle power to the turbofans. The low operating temperature and the need for lightweight components that place a minimum of additional heat load on the refrigeration system open the possibility of incorporating extremely efficient cryogenic power conversion technology. This Phase II project is developing critical components required to meet these goals.

  20. Physics and potentials of fissioning plasmas for space power and propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thom, K.; Schwenk, F. C.; Schneider, R. T.

    1976-01-01

    Fissioning uranium plasmas are the nuclear fuel in conceptual high-temperature gaseous-core reactors for advanced rocket propulsion in space. A gaseous-core nuclear rocket would be a thermal reactor in which an enriched uranium plasma at about 10,000 K is confined in a reflector-moderator cavity where it is nuclear critical and transfers its fission power to a confining propellant flow for the production of thrust at a specific impulse up to 5000 sec. With a thrust-to-engine weight ratio approaching unity, the gaseous-core nuclear rocket could provide for propulsion capabilities needed for manned missions to the nearby planets and for economical cislunar ferry services. Fueled with enriched uranium hexafluoride and operated at temperatures lower than needed for propulsion, the gaseous-core reactor scheme also offers significant benefits in applications for space and terrestrial power. They include high-efficiency power generation at low specific mass, the burnup of certain fission products and actinides, the breeding of U-233 from thorium with short doubling times, and improved convenience of fuel handling and processing in the gaseous phase.

  1. Overview of Advanced Electromagnetic Propulsion Development at NASA Glenn Research Center

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pencil, Eric J.; Kamhawi, Hani; Gilland, James H.; Arrington, Lynn A.

    2005-01-01

    NASA Glenn Research Center s Very High Power Electric Propulsion task is sponsored by the Energetics Heritage Project. Electric propulsion technologies currently being investigated under this program include pulsed electromagnetic plasma thrusters, magnetoplasmadynamic thrusters, helicon plasma sources as well as the systems models for high power electromagnetic propulsion devices. An investigation and evaluation of pulsed electromagnetic plasma thruster performance at energy levels up to 700 Joules is underway. On-going magnetoplasmadynamic thruster experiments will investigate applied-field performance characteristics of gas-fed MPDs. Plasma characterization of helicon plasma sources will provide additional insights into the operation of this novel propulsion concept. Systems models have been developed for high power electromagnetic propulsion concepts, such as pulsed inductive thrusters and magnetoplasmadynamic thrusters to enable an evaluation of mission-optimized designs.

  2. Antiproton powered propulsion with magnetically confined plasma engines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lapointe, Michael R.

    1989-01-01

    The reaction of the matter-antimatter annihilation, with its specific energy being over 250 times the specific energy released in nuclear fusion, is considered as an energy source for spacecraft propulsion. A concept of a magnetically confined pulsed plasma engine is described. In this concept, antiproton beams are injected axially into a pulsed magnetic mirror system, where they annihilate with an initially neutral hydrogen gas; the resulting charge annihilation products transfer energy to the hydrogen propellant, which is then exhausted through one end of the pulsed mirror system to provide thrust. Numerical simulations were developed to calculate the annihilation rate of antiprotons in hydrogen and to follow the resulting ion, muon, and electron/positron number density evolutions.

  3. Antiproton powered propulsion with magnetically confined plasma engines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lapointe, Michael R.

    1989-01-01

    Matter-antimatter annihilation releases more energy per unit mass than any other method of energy production, making it an attractive energy source for spacecraft propulsion. In the magnetically confined plasma engine, antiproton beams are injected axially into a pulsed magnetic mirror system, where they annihilate with an initially neutral hydrogen gas. The resulting charged annihilation products transfer energy to the hydrogen propellant, which is then exhausted through one end of the pulsed mirror system to provide thrust. The calculated energy transfer efficiencies for a low number density (10(14)/cu cm) hydrogen propellant are insufficient to warrant operating the engine in this mode. Efficiencies are improved using moderate propellant number densities (10(16)/cu cm), but the energy transferred to the plasma in a realistic magnetic mirror system is generally limited to less than 2 percent of the initial proton-antiproton annihilation energy. The energy transfer efficiencies are highest for high number density (10(18)/cu cm) propellants, but plasma temperatures are reduced by excessive radiation losses. Low to moderate thrust over a wide range of specific impulse can be generated with moderate propellant number densities, while higher thrust but lower specific impulse may be generated using high propellant number densities. Significant mass will be required to shield the superconducting magnet coils from the high energy gamma radiation emitted by neutral pion decay. The mass of such a radiation shield may dominate the total engine mass, and could severely diminish the performance of antiproton powered engines which utilize magnetic confinement. The problem is compounded in the antiproton powered plasma engine, where lower energy plasma bremsstrahlung radiation may cause shield surface ablation and degradation.

  4. Ground-to-orbit laser propulsion: Advanced applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kare, Jordin T.

    1990-01-01

    Laser propulsion uses a large fixed laser to supply energy to heat an inert propellant in a rocket thruster. Such a system has two potential advantages: extreme simplicity of the thruster, and potentially high performance, particularly high exhaust velocity. By taking advantage of the simplicity of the thruster, it should be possible to launch small (10 to 1000 kg) payloads to orbit using roughly 1 MW of average laser power per kg of payload. The incremental cost of such launches would be of an order of $200/kg for the smallest systems, decreasing to essentially the cost of electricity to run the laser (a few times $10/kg) for larger systems. Although the individual payload size would be smaller, a laser launch system would be inherently high-volume, with the capacity to launch tens of thousands of payloads per year. Also, with high exhaust velocity, a laser launch system could launch payloads to high velocities - geosynchronous transfer, Earth escape, or beyond - at a relatively small premium over launches to LEO. The status of pulsed laser propulsion is briefly reviewed including proposals for advanced vehicles. Several applications appropriate to the early part of the next century and perhaps valuable well into the next millennium are discussed qualitatively: space habitat supply, deep space mission supply, nuclear waste disposal, and manned vehicle launching.

  5. Ground-to-orbit laser propulsion: Advanced applications

    SciTech Connect

    Kare, J.T.

    1990-01-01

    Laser propulsion uses a large fixed laser to supply energy to heat an inert propellant in a rocket thruster. Such a system has two potential advantages: extreme simplicity of the thruster, and potentially high performance -- particularly high exhaust velocity. By taking advantage of the simplicity of the thruster, it should be possible to launch small (10--1000 kg) payloads to orbit using roughly 1 MW of average laser power per kg of payload. The incremental cost of such launches would be of order $200/kg for the smallest systems, decreasing to essentially the cost of electricity to run the laser (a few times $10/kg) for large systems. Although the individual payload size would be small, a laser launch system would be inherently high-volume, with the capacity to launch tens of thousands of payloads per year. Also, with high exhaust velocity, a laser launch system could launch payloads to high velocities -- geosynchronous transfer, Earth escape, or beyond -- at a relatively small premium over launches to LEO. In this paper, we briefly review the status of pulsed laser propulsion, including proposals for advanced vehicles. We then discuss qualitatively several unique applications appropriate to the early part of the next century, and perhaps valuable well into the next millenium: space habitat supply, deep space mission supply, nuclear waste disposal, and manned vehicle launching.

  6. Advanced supersonic propulsion study, phase 2. [propulsion system performance, design analysis and technology assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howlett, R. A.

    1975-01-01

    A continuation of the NASA/P and WA study to evaluate various types of propulsion systems for advanced commercial supersonic transports has resulted in the identification of two very promising engine concepts. They are the Variable Stream Control Engine which provides independent temperature and velocity control for two coannular exhaust streams, and a derivative of this engine, a Variable Cycle Engine that employs a rear flow-inverter valve to vary the bypass ratio of the cycle. Both concepts are based on advanced engine technology and have the potential for significant improvements in jet noise, exhaust emissions and economic characteristics relative to current technology supersonic engines. Extensive research and technology programs are required in several critical areas that are unique to these supersonic Variable Cycle Engines to realize these potential improvements. Parametric cycle and integration studies of conventional and Variable Cycle Engines are reviewed, features of the two most promising engine concepts are described, and critical technology requirements and required programs are summarized.

  7. Cryogenic Fluid Management Technologies for Advanced Green Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Motil, Susan M.; Meyer, Michael L.; Tucker, Stephen P.

    2007-01-01

    In support of the Exploration Vision for returning to the Moon and beyond, NASA and its partners are developing and testing critical cryogenic fluid propellant technologies that will meet the need for high performance propellants on long-term missions. Reliable knowledge of low-gravity cryogenic fluid management behavior is lacking and yet is critical in the areas of tank thermal and pressure control, fluid acquisition, mass gauging, and fluid transfer. Such knowledge can significantly reduce or even eliminate tank fluid boil-off losses for long term missions, reduce propellant launch mass and required on-orbit margins, and simplify vehicle operations. The Propulsion and Cryogenic Advanced Development (PCAD) Project is performing experimental and analytical evaluation of several areas within Cryogenic Fluid Management (CFM) to enable NASA's Exploration Vision. This paper discusses the status of the PCAD CFM technology focus areas relative to the anticipated CFM requirements to enable execution of the Vision for Space Exploration.

  8. Advanced core technology: Key to subsonic propulsion benefits

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glassman, Arthur J.; Snyder, Christopher A.; Knip, Gerald, Jr.

    1989-01-01

    A study was conducted to identify the potential performance benefits and key technology drivers associated with advanced cores for subsonic high bypass turbofan engines. Investigated first were the individual sensitivities of varying compressor efficiency, pressure ratio and bleed (turbine cooling); combustor pressure recovery; and turbine efficiency and inlet temperature on thermal efficiency and core specific power output. Then, engine cycle and mission performance benefits were determined for systems incorporating all potentially achievable technology advancements. The individual thermodynamic sensitivities are shown over a range of turbine temperatures (at cruise) from 2900 to 3500 R and for both constant (current technology) and optimum (maximum thermal efficiency) overall pressure ratios. It is seen that no single parameter alone will provide a large increase in core thermal efficiency, which is the thermodynamic parameter of most concern for transport propulsion. However, when all potentially achievable advancements are considered, there occurs a synergism that produces significant cycle and mission performance benefits. The nature of these benefits are presented along with the technology challenges.

  9. Advanced core technology - Key to subsonic propulsion benefits

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glassman, Arthur J.; Snyder, Christopher A.; Knip, Gerald, Jr.

    1989-01-01

    A study was conducted to identify the potential performance benefits and key technology drivers associated with advanced cores for subsonic high bypass turbofan engines. Investigated first were the individual sensitivities of varying compressor efficiency, pressure ratio and bleed (turbine cooling); combustor pressure recovery; and turbine efficiency and inlet temperature on thermal efficiency and core specific power output. Then, engine cycle and mission performance benefits were determined for systems incorporating all potentially achievable technology advancements. The individual thermodynamic sensitivities are shown over a range of turbine temperatures (at cruise) from 2900 to 3500 R and for both constant (current technology) and optimum (maximum thermal efficiency) overall pressure ratios. It is seen that no single parameter alone will provide a large increase in core thermal efficiency, which is the thermodynamic parameter of most concern for transport propulsion. However, when all potentially achievable advancements are considered, there occurs a synergism that produces significant cycle and mission performance benefits. The nature of these benefits are presented along with the technology challenges.

  10. NASA/MSFC Interest in Advanced Propulsion and Power Technologies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cole, John W.

    2003-01-01

    This viewgraph representation provides an overview of research being conducted at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center. Conventional propulsion systems are at near peak performance levels but will not enable the science and exploration deep space missions NASA envisions. Energetic propulsion technologies can make these missions possible but only if the fundamental problems of energy storage density and energy to energy thrust conversion efficiency are solved. Topics covered include: research rationale, limits of thermal propulsion systems, need for propulsion energetics research, emerging energetic propulsion technologies, and potential research opportunities.

  11. Ablation of carbon-doped liquid propellant in laser plasma propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Z. Y.; Liang, T.; Zhang, S. Q.; Gao, L.; Gao, H.; Zhang, Z. L.

    2016-04-01

    Carbon-doped liquid glycerol ablated by nanosecond pulse laser is investigated in laser plasma propulsion. It is found that the propulsion is much more correlated with the carbon content. The doped carbon can change the laser intensity and laser focal position so as to reduce the splashing quantity of the glycerol. Less consumption of the liquid volume results in a high specific impulse.

  12. Project Icarus: Analysis of Plasma jet driven Magneto-Inertial Fusion as potential primary propulsion driver for the Icarus probe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stanic, M.; Cassibry, J. T.; Adams, R. B.

    2013-05-01

    Hopes of sending probes to another star other than the Sun are currently limited by the maturity of advanced propulsion technologies. One of the few candidate propulsion systems for providing interstellar flight capabilities is nuclear fusion. In the past many fusion propulsion concepts have been proposed and some of them have even been explored in detail, Project Daedalus for example. However, as scientific progress in this field has advanced, new fusion concepts have emerged that merit evaluation as potential drivers for interstellar missions. Plasma jet driven Magneto-Inertial Fusion (PJMIF) is one of those concepts. PJMIF involves a salvo of converging plasma jets that form a uniform liner, which compresses a magnetized target to fusion conditions. It is an Inertial Confinement Fusion (ICF)-Magnetic Confinement Fusion (MCF) hybrid approach that has the potential for a multitude of benefits over both ICF and MCF, such as lower system mass and significantly lower cost. This paper concentrates on a thermodynamic assessment of basic performance parameters necessary for utilization of PJMIF as a candidate propulsion system for the Project Icarus mission. These parameters include: specific impulse, thrust, exhaust velocity, mass of the engine system, mass of the fuel required etc. This is a submission of the Project Icarus Study Group.

  13. Advanced Fusion Reactors for Space Propulsion and Power Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Chapman, John J.

    2011-06-15

    In recent years the methodology proposed for conversion of light elements into energy via fusion has made steady progress. Scientific studies and engineering efforts in advanced fusion systems designs have introduced some new concepts with unique aspects including consideration of Aneutronic fuels. The plant parameters for harnessing aneutronic fusion appear more exigent than those required for the conventional fusion fuel cycle. However aneutronic fusion propulsion plants for Space deployment will ultimately offer the possibility of enhanced performance from nuclear gain as compared to existing ionic engines as well as providing a clean solution to Planetary Protection considerations and requirements. Proton triggered 11Boron fuel (p- 11B) will produce abundant ion kinetic energy for In-Space vectored thrust. Thus energetic alpha particles' exhaust momentum can be used directly to produce high Isp thrust and also offer possibility of power conversion into electricity. p-11B is an advanced fusion plant fuel with well understood reaction kinematics but will require some new conceptual thinking as to the most effective implementation.

  14. Advanced Fusion Reactors for Space Propulsion and Power Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chapman, John J.

    2011-01-01

    In recent years the methodology proposed for conversion of light elements into energy via fusion has made steady progress. Scientific studies and engineering efforts in advanced fusion systems designs have introduced some new concepts with unique aspects including consideration of Aneutronic fuels. The plant parameters for harnessing aneutronic fusion appear more exigent than those required for the conventional fusion fuel cycle. However aneutronic fusion propulsion plants for Space deployment will ultimately offer the possibility of enhanced performance from nuclear gain as compared to existing ionic engines as well as providing a clean solution to Planetary Protection considerations and requirements. Proton triggered 11Boron fuel (p- 11B) will produce abundant ion kinetic energy for In-Space vectored thrust. Thus energetic alpha particles "exhaust" momentum can be used directly to produce high ISP thrust and also offer possibility of power conversion into electricity. p- 11B is an advanced fusion plant fuel with well understood reaction kinematics but will require some new conceptual thinking as to the most effective implementation.

  15. Advanced Single-Aisle Transport Propulsion Design Options Revisited

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guynn, Mark D.; Berton, Jeffrey J.; Tong, Michael T.; Haller, William J.

    2013-01-01

    Future propulsion options for advanced single-aisle transports have been investigated in a number of previous studies by the authors. These studies have examined the system level characteristics of aircraft incorporating ultra-high bypass ratio (UHB) turbofans (direct drive and geared) and open rotor engines. During the course of these prior studies, a number of potential refinements and enhancements to the analysis methodology and assumptions were identified. This paper revisits a previously conducted UHB turbofan fan pressure ratio trade study using updated analysis methodology and assumptions. The changes incorporated have decreased the optimum fan pressure ratio for minimum fuel consumption and reduced the engine design trade-offs between minimizing noise and minimizing fuel consumption. Nacelle drag and engine weight are found to be key drivers in determining the optimum fan pressure ratio from a fuel efficiency perspective. The revised noise analysis results in the study aircraft being 2 to 4 EPNdB (cumulative) quieter due to a variety of reasons explained in the paper. With equal core technology assumed, the geared engine architecture is found to be as good as or better than the direct drive architecture for most parameters investigated. However, the engine ultimately selected for a future advanced single-aisle aircraft will depend on factors beyond those considered here.

  16. Possibilities for magnetic control of fission plasma propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gerwin, R. A.; Poston, D. I.; Nebel, R. A.

    Magnetic fusion energy research suggests the use of some magnetoplasma configurations to address certain critical issues in the gas-core fission approach to nuclear-thermal propulsion. The general framework of such an investigation that was outlined in a previous paper is directed here at the spheromak configuration in greater detail. In some unoptimized examples, the authors explore the compatibility of gas-core fission reactor criticality conditions with the dynamo action needed to non-inductively sustain the spheromak. The Lundquist number S is identified as a figure of merit, and is estimated by modeling to be as large as 100 in near-critical uranium (U-233) plasmas of several-meter dimensions diluted with lithium (Li-7) when the spheromak power consumption is treated as a constraint; whereas S as small as 200 is observed to be still able to preserve MHD dynamo activity in 3D resistive MHD simulations. Further optimization studies are required to ascertain whether these two values can be made to coincide.

  17. Possibilities for magnetic control of fission plasma propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Gerwin, R.A.; Poston, D.I.; Nebel, R.A.

    1995-09-01

    Magnetic fusion energy research suggests the use of some magnetoplasma configurations to address certain critical issues in the gas-core fission approach to nuclear-thermal propulsion. The general framework of such an investigation that was outlined in a previous paper is directed here at the spheromak configuration in greater detail. In some unoptimized examples, the authors explore the compatibility of gas-core fission reactor criticality conditions with the dynamo action needed to non-inductively sustain the spheromak. The Lundquist number S is identified as a figure of merit, and is estimated by modeling to be as large as 100 in near-critical uranium ({sup 233}U) plasmas of several-meter dimensions diluted with lithium ({sup 7}Li) when the spheromak power consumption is treated as a constraint; whereas S as small as 200 is observed to be still able to preserve MHD dynamo activity in 3D resistive MHD simulations. Further optimization studies are required to ascertain whether these two values can be made to coincide.

  18. Applications of advanced upper surface blowing propulsive-lift technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cochrane, J. A.; Riddle, D. W.; Youth, S.

    1982-01-01

    The success of the Quiet Short-Haul Research Aircraft led to studies of this technology for a business jet and a Short-Haul Transport. The studies showed that the Short-Haul Transport could operate from a 762.0-m runway with 95 passengers at low noise levels. Design range was 500 n. mi. but with maximum fuel load the runway length is only increased to 883.9 m while the range is increased to more than 1000 n. mi. Two business jet designs were studied; one design was based on a 457.2-m field length and the other was designed for a 760.0-m field length. The business jet designed for a 457.2-m field length can also be loaded to maximum fuel capacity. In this case the range increases from 500 n. mi. to 1400 n. mi. while the runway length increases from 457.2 m to 632.5 m. The business jet studies showed that the application of advanced propulsive-lift technology to this class aircraft can result in payload-range-speed performance comparable to current aircraft with about one-half the runway length requirement.

  19. Recent Advances in Nuclear Powered Electric Propulsion for Space Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cassady, R. Joseph; Frisbee, Robert H.; Gilland, James H.; Houts, Michael G.; LaPointe, Michael R.; Maresse-Reading, Colleen M.; Oleson, Steven R.; Polk, James E.; Russell, Derrek; Sengupta, Anita

    2007-01-01

    Nuclear and radioisotope powered electric thrusters are being developed as primary in-space propulsion systems for potential future robotic and piloted space missions. Possible applications for high power nuclear electric propulsion include orbit raising and maneuvering of large space platforms, lunar and Mars cargo transport, asteroid rendezvous and sample return, and robotic and piloted planetary missions, while lower power radioisotope electric propulsion could significantly enhance or enable some future robotic deep space science missions. This paper provides an overview of recent U.S. high power electric thruster research programs, describing the operating principles, challenges, and status of each technology. Mission analysis is presented that compares the benefits and performance of each thruster type for high priority NASA missions. The status of space nuclear power systems for high power electric propulsion is presented. The paper concludes with a discussion of power and thruster development strategies for future radioisotope electric propulsion systems,

  20. Advanced Propulsion for Geostationary Orbit Insertion and North-South Station Keeping

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oleson, Steven R.; Myers, Roger M.; Kluever, Craig A.; Riehl, John P.; Curran, Francis M.

    1995-01-01

    Solar electric propulsion (SEP) technology is currently being used for geostationary satellite station keeping to increase payload mass. Analyses show that advanced electric propulsion technologies can be used to obtain additional increases in payload mass by using these same technologies to perform part of the orbit transfer. In this work three electric propulsion technologies are examined at two power levels for an Atlas 2AS class spacecraft. The on-board chemical propulsion apogee engine fuel is reduced to allow the use of electric propulsion. A numerical optimizer is used to determine the chemical burns which will minimize the electric propulsion transfer time. Results show that for a 1550 kg Atlas 2AS class payload, increases in net mass (geostationary satellite mass less wet propulsion system mass) of 150 to 800 kg are possible using electric propulsion for station keeping, advanced chemical engines for part of the transfer, and electric propulsion for the remainder of the transfer. Trip times are between one and four months.

  1. Advanced Aero-Propulsive Mid-Lift-to-Drag Ratio Entry Vehicle for Future Exploration Missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Campbell, C. H.; Sostaric, R. R.; Cerimele, C. J.; Wong, K. A.; Valle, G. D.; Garcia, J. A.; Melton, J. E.; Munk, M. M.; Blades, E.; Kuruvila, G.; Picetti, D. J.; Hassan, B.; Kniskern, M. W.

    2012-06-01

    Advanced mid-L/D entry vehicles can provide performance advantages significant to mid-term robotic and human missions. Preliminary simulations with new paradigms show transonic Mach vehicle staging possible for retro-propulsion, descent and landing.

  2. Frame synchronization in Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Advanced Multi-Mission Operations System (AMMOS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, E.

    2002-01-01

    The Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Advanced Multi-Mission Operations System system processes data received from deep-space spacecraft, where error rates can be high, bit rates are low, and data is unique precious.

  3. Advanced Earth-to-orbit propulsion technology information, dissemination and research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wu, S. T.

    1995-01-01

    In this period of performance a conference (The 1994 Conference on Advanced Earth-to-Orbit Propulsion Technology) was organized and implemented by the University of Alabama in Huntsville and held May 15-17 to assemble and disseminate the current information on Advanced Earth-to-Orbit Propulsion Technology. The results were assembled for publication as NASA-CP-3282, Volume 1 and 2 and NASA-CP-3287.

  4. An airline study of advanced technology requirements for advanced high speed commercial engines. 3: Propulsion system requirements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sallee, G. P.

    1973-01-01

    The advanced technology requirements for an advanced high speed commercial transport engine are presented. The results of the phase 3 effort cover the requirements and objectives for future aircraft propulsion systems. These requirements reflect the results of the Task 1 and 2 efforts and serve as a baseline for future evaluations, specification development efforts, contract/purchase agreements, and operational plans for future subsonic commercial engines. This report is divided into five major sections: (1) management objectives for commercial propulsion systems, (2) performance requirements for commercial transport propulsion systems, (3) design criteria for future transport engines, (4) design requirements for powerplant packages, and (5) testing.

  5. Advanced design concepts in nuclear electric propulsion. [and spacecraft configurations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peelgren, M. L.; Mondt, J. F.

    1974-01-01

    Conceptual designs of the nuclear propulsion programs are reported. Major areas of investigation were (1) design efforts on spacecraft configuration and heat rejection subsystem, (2) high-voltage thermionic reactor concepts, and (3) dual-mode spacecraft configuration study.

  6. Recent advances in low-thrust propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stone, James R.

    1988-01-01

    The NASA low-thrust propulsion technology program is aimed at providing high performance options to a broad class of near-term and future missions. Major emphases of the program are on storable and hydrogen/oxygen low-thrust chemical, low-power (auxiliary) electrothermal, and high-power electric propulsion. This paper represents the major accomplishments of the program and discusses their impact.

  7. High-pressure propulsion - advanced concepts for cooling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schoerman, Leonard

    The state-of-the-art liquid propellant cooled combustion chambers utilized in the space shuttle are third-generation designs which have evolved from a continuing demand for higher operating pressure and aircraft-type reusability. History has shown that major advances in cooling occur in approximately ten-year cycles, with each cycle providing a nominal 400% increase in operating pressure and/or a higher degree of reusability. The previous technologies include the first-generation double-wall steel jackets used in the 220 psi V-2 and Aerobee, and the second generation wire-wrapped double tapered tubular assemblies typical of the 800 psi Titan I, II, and III, and 1000 psi F-1 engines. The third-generation designs utilize milled slot, high thermal conductivity liners and electrodeposited nickel closures. The space shuttle main engine operating at 3200 psia is adequate for individual flights; however, the desired goal of 55 service-free missions has yet to be realized. Future single-stage-to-orbit propulsion concepts can benefit from a further increase in operating pressures to 6000 to 10,000 psi combined with engine reuse capabilities in excess of the 55 flight goals of the space shuttle. A fourth-generation approach will be required to attain these more ambitious goals. These new designs will require a combination of cooling processes, including regenerative and transpiration, combined with improved high-temperature materials and new fabrication techniques. The limitations of the third-generation designs, the impact of propellant/coolant selection, and the approaches for the coming fourth-generation cooling technologies are discussed.

  8. Plasma Propulsion of a Metallic Microdroplet and its Deformation upon Laser Impact

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurilovich, Dmitry; Klein, Alexander L.; Torretti, Francesco; Lassise, Adam; Hoekstra, Ronnie; Ubachs, Wim; Gelderblom, Hanneke; Versolato, Oscar O.

    2016-07-01

    The propulsion of a liquid indium-tin microdroplet by nanosecond-pulse laser impact is experimentally investigated. We capture the physics of the droplet propulsion in a scaling law that accurately describes the plasma-imparted momentum transfer over nearly three decades of pulse energy, enabling the optimization of the laser-droplet coupling. The subsequent deformation of the droplet is described by an analytical model that accounts for the droplet's propulsion velocity and the liquid properties. Comparing our findings to those from vaporization-accelerated millimeter-sized water droplets, we demonstrate that the fluid-dynamic response of laser-impacted droplets is scalable and decoupled from the propulsion mechanism. By contrast, the physics behind the propulsion of liquid-metal droplets differs from that of water. It is studied here in detail and under industrially relevant conditions as found in next-generation nanolithography machines.

  9. Plasma Processing of Advanced Materials

    SciTech Connect

    Heberlein, Joachim, V.R.; Pfender, Emil; Kortshagen, Uwe

    2005-02-28

    Plasma Processing of Advanced Materials The project had the overall objective of improving our understanding of the influences of process parameters on the properties of advanced superhard materials. The focus was on high rate deposition processes using thermal plasmas and atmospheric pressure glow discharges, and the emphasis on superhard materials was chosen because of the potential impact of such materials on industrial energy use and on the environment. In addition, the development of suitable diagnostic techniques was pursued. The project was divided into four tasks: (1) Deposition of superhard boron containing films using a supersonic plasma jet reactor (SPJR), and the characterization of the deposition process. (2) Deposition of superhard nanocomposite films in the silicon-nitrogen-carbon system using the triple torch plasma reactor (TTPR), and the characterization of the deposition process. (3) Deposition of films consisting of carbon nanotubes using an atmospheric pressure glow discharge reactor. (4) Adapting the Thomson scattering method for characterization of atmospheric pressure non-uniform plasmas with steep spatial gradients and temporal fluctuations. This report summarizes the results.

  10. Nuclear powered Mars cargo transport mission utilizing advanced ion propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Galecki, D.L.; Patterson, M.J.

    1987-01-01

    Nuclear-powered ion propulsion technology was combined with detailed trajectory analysis to determine propulsion system and trajectory options for an unmanned cargo mission to Mars in support of manned Mars missions. A total of 96 mission scenarios were identified by combining two power levels, two propellants, four values of specific impulse per propellant, three starting altitudes, and two starting velocities. Sixty of these scenarios were selected for a detailed trajectory analysis; a complete propulsion system study was then conducted for 20 of these trajectories. Trip times ranged from 344 days for a xenon propulsion system operating at 300 kW total power and starting from lunar orbit with escape velocity, to 770 days for an argon propulsion system operating at 300 kW total power and starting from nuclear start orbit with circular velocity. Trip times for the 3 MW cases studied ranged from 356 to 413 days. Payload masses ranged from 5700 to 12,300 kg for the 300 kW power level, and from 72,200 to 81,500 kg for the 3 MW power level.

  11. Advances in computational design and analysis of airbreathing propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klineberg, John M.

    1989-01-01

    The development of commercial and military aircraft depends, to a large extent, on engine manufacturers being able to achieve significant increases in propulsion capability through improved component aerodynamics, materials, and structures. The recent history of propulsion has been marked by efforts to develop computational techniques that can speed up the propulsion design process and produce superior designs. The availability of powerful supercomputers, such as the NASA Numerical Aerodynamic Simulator, and the potential for even higher performance offered by parallel computer architectures, have opened the door to the use of multi-dimensional simulations to study complex physical phenomena in propulsion systems that have previously defied analysis or experimental observation. An overview of several NASA Lewis research efforts is provided that are contributing toward the long-range goal of a numerical test-cell for the integrated, multidisciplinary design, analysis, and optimization of propulsion systems. Specific examples in Internal Computational Fluid Mechanics, Computational Structural Mechanics, Computational Materials Science, and High Performance Computing are cited and described in terms of current capabilities, technical challenges, and future research directions.

  12. Advanced research and technology programs for advanced high-pressure oxygen-hydrogen rocket propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marsik, S. J.; Morea, S. F.

    1985-01-01

    A research and technology program for advanced high pressure, oxygen-hydrogen rocket propulsion technology is presently being pursued by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to establish the basic discipline technologies, develop the analytical tools, and establish the data base necessary for an orderly evolution of the staged combustion reusable rocket engine. The need for the program is based on the premise that the USA will depend on the Shuttle and its derivative versions as its principal Earth-to-orbit transportation system for the next 20 to 30 yr. The program is focused in three principal areas of enhancement: (1) life extension, (2) performance, and (3) operations and diagnosis. Within the technological disciplines the efforts include: rotordynamics, structural dynamics, fluid and gas dynamics, materials fatigue/fracture/life, turbomachinery fluid mechanics, ignition/combustion processes, manufacturing/producibility/nondestructive evaluation methods and materials development/evaluation. An overview of the Advanced High Pressure Oxygen-Hydrogen Rocket Propulsion Technology Program Structure and Working Groups objectives are presented with highlights of several significant achievements.

  13. Advanced earth-to-orbit transportation vehicles and their propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shelton, B. W.

    1978-01-01

    This paper identifies some of the advanced transportation systems and their associated propulsion systems being considered by MSFC for near-term missions (1980-1990), future missions (1990-2000), and far-term missions (post 2000). The near-term launch-vehicle considerations center around the growth Shuttle and the Shuttle-derived Heavy-Lift Launch Vehicle (HLLV) systems. The future and far-term considerations support the development of larger more advanced transportation systems. In such cases, the changing nature of the propulsion requirements needed by the launch vehicle are identified. The evolvement of chemical propulsion launch vehicles into the far future is prognosticated, and where applicable from a launch vehicle or propulsion viewpoint, orbit transfer vehicles are discussed.

  14. Main propulsion system design recommendations for an advanced Orbit Transfer Vehicle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Redd, L.

    1985-01-01

    Various main propulsion system configurations of an advanced OTV are evaluated with respect to the probability of nonindependent failures, i.e., engine failures that disable the entire main propulsion system. Analysis of the life-cycle cost (LCC) indicates that LCC is sensitive to the main propulsion system reliability, vehicle dry weight, and propellant cost; it is relatively insensitive to the number of missions/overhaul, failures per mission, and EVA and IVA cost. In conclusion, two or three engines are recommended in view of their highest reliability, minimum life-cycle cost, and fail operational/fail safe capability.

  15. Advances in NASA's Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Technology project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peecook, Keith M.; Stone, James R.

    1993-01-01

    The status of the Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) project for space exploration and the future plans for NTP technology are discussed. Current activities in the framework of the NTP project deal with nonnuclear material tests; instrumentation, controls, and health management; turbopumps; nozzles and nozzle extension; and an exhaust plume.

  16. Advanced hybrid nuclear propulsion Mars mission performance enhancement

    SciTech Connect

    Dagle, J.E.; Noffsinger, K.E.; Segna, D.R.

    1992-02-01

    Nuclear electric propulsion (NEP), compared with chemical and nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP), can effectively deliver the same mass to Mars using much less propellant, consequently requiring less mass delivered to Earth orbit. The lower thrust of NEP requires a spiral trajectory near planetary bodies, which significantly increases the travel time. Although the total travel time is long, the portion of the flight time spent during interplanetary transfer is shorter, because the vehicle is thrusting for much longer periods of time. This has led to the supposition that NEP, although very attractive for cargo missions, is not suitable for piloted missions to Mars. However, with the application of a hybrid approach to propulsion, the benefits of NEP can be utilized while drastically reducing the overall travel time required. Development of a dual-mode system, which utilizes high-thrust NTP to propel the spacecraft from the planetary gravitational influence and low-thrust NEP to accelerate in interplanetary space, eliminates the spiral trajectory and results in a much faster transit time than could be obtained by either NEP or NTP alone. This results in a mission profile with a lower initial mass in low Earth orbit. In addition, the propulsion system would have the capability to provide electrical power for mission applications.

  17. Advances in adaptive structures at Jet Propulsion Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wada, Ben K.; Garba, John A.

    1993-01-01

    Future proposed NASA missions with the need for large deployable or erectable precision structures will require solutions to many technical problems. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) is developing new technologies in Adaptive Structures to meet these challenges. The technology requirements, approaches to meet the requirements using Adaptive Structures, and the recent JPL research results in Adaptive Structures are described.

  18. Advanced Earth-to-orbit propulsion technology information, dissemination and research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wu, S. T.

    1993-01-01

    A conference was held at MSFC in May 1992 describing the research achievements of the NASA-wide research and technology programs dealing with advanced oxygen/hydrogen and oxygen/hydrocarbon earth-to-orbit propulsion. The purpose of this conference was to provide a forum for the timely dissemination to the propulsion community of the results emerging from this program with particular emphasis on the transfer of information from the scientific/research to the designer.

  19. NASA's Advanced Propulsion Technology Activities for Third Generation Fully Reusable Launch Vehicle Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hueter, Uwe

    2000-01-01

    NASA's Office of Aeronautics and Space Transportation Technology (OASTT) established the following three major goals, referred to as "The Three Pillars for Success": Global Civil Aviation, Revolutionary Technology Leaps, and Access to Space. The Advanced Space Transportation Program Office (ASTP) at the NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. focuses on future space transportation technologies under the "Access to Space" pillar. The Propulsion Projects within ASTP under the investment area of Spaceliner100, focus on the earth-to-orbit (ETO) third generation reusable launch vehicle technologies. The goals of Spaceliner 100 is to reduce cost by a factor of 100 and improve safety by a factor of 10,000 over current conditions. The ETO Propulsion Projects in ASTP, are actively developing combination/combined-cycle propulsion technologies that utilized airbreathing propulsion during a major portion of the trajectory. System integration, components, materials and advanced rocket technologies are also being pursued. Over the last several years, one of the main thrusts has been to develop rocket-based combined cycle (RBCC) technologies. The focus has been on conducting ground tests of several engine designs to establish the RBCC flowpaths performance. Flowpath testing of three different RBCC engine designs is progressing. Additionally, vehicle system studies are being conducted to assess potential operational space access vehicles utilizing combined-cycle propulsion systems. The design, manufacturing, and ground testing of a scale flight-type engine are planned. The first flight demonstration of an airbreathing combined cycle propulsion system is envisioned around 2005. The paper will describe the advanced propulsion technologies that are being being developed under the ETO activities in the ASTP program. Progress, findings, and future activities for the propulsion technologies will be discussed.

  20. Advanced Hall Electric Propulsion for Future In-space Transportation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oleson, Steven R.; Sankovic, John M.

    2001-01-01

    The Hall thruster is an electric propulsion device used for multiple in-space applications including orbit raising, on-orbit maneuvers, and de-orbit functions. These in-space propulsion functions are currently performed by toxic hydrazine monopropellant or hydrazine derivative/nitrogen tetroxide bi-propellant thrusters. The Hall thruster operates nominally in the 1500 sec specific impulse regime. It provides greater thrust to power than conventional gridded ion engines, thus reducing trip times and operational life when compared to that technology in Earth orbit applications. The technology in the far term, by adding a second acceleration stage, has shown promise of providing over 4000s Isp, the regime of the gridded ion engine and necessary for deep space applications. The Hall thruster system consists of three parts, the thruster, the power processor, and the propellant system. The technology is operational and commercially available at the 1.5 kW power level and 5 kW application is underway. NASA is looking toward 10 kW and eventually 50 kW-class engines for ambitious space transportation applications. The former allows launch vehicle step-down for GEO missions and demanding planetary missions such as Europa Lander, while the latter allows quick all-electric propulsion LEO to GEO transfers and non-nuclear transportation human Mars missions.

  1. Advanced Compatibility Characterization Of AF-M315E With Spacecraft Propulsion System Materials Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McClure, Mark B.; Greene, Benjamin

    2014-01-01

    All spacecraft require propulsion systems for thrust and maneuvering. Propulsion systems can be chemical, nuclear, electrical, cold gas or combinations thereof. Chemical propulsion has proven to be the most reliable technology since the deployment of launch vehicles. Performance, storability, and handling are three important aspects of liquid chemical propulsion. Bipropellant systems require a fuel and an oxidizer for propulsion, but monopropellants only require a fuel and a catalyst for propulsion and are therefore simpler and lighter. Hydrazine is the state of the art propellant for monopropellant systems, but has drawbacks because it is highly hazardous to human health, which requires extensive care in handling, complex ground ops due to safety and environmental considerations, and lengthy turnaround times for reusable spacecraft. All users of hydrazine monopropellant must contend with these issues and their associated costs. The development of a new monopropellant, intended to replace hydrazine, has been in progress for years. This project will apply advanced techniques to characterize the engineering properties of materials used in AF-M315E propulsion systems after propellant exposure. AF-M315E monopropellant has been selected HQ's Green Propellant Infusion Mission (GPIM) to replace toxic hydrazine for improved performance and reduce safety and health issues that will shorten reusable spacecraft turn-around time. In addition, this project will fundamentally strengthen JSC's core competency to evaluate, use and infuse liquid propellant systems.

  2. Magnetic Dipole Inflation with Cascaded ARC and Applications to Mini-Magnetospheric Plasma Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Giersch, L.; Winglee, R.; Slough, J.; Ziemba, T.; Euripides, P.

    2003-01-01

    Mini-Magnetospheric Plasma Propulsion (M2P2) seeks to create a plasma-inflated magnetic bubble capable of intercepting significant thrust from the solar wind for the purposes of high speed, high efficiency spacecraft propulsion. Previous laboratory experiments into the M2P2 concept have primarily used helicon plasma sources to inflate the dipole magnetic field. The work presented here uses an alternative plasma source, the cascaded arc, in a geometry similar to that used in previous helicon experiments. Time resolved measurements of the equatorial plasma density have been conducted and the results are discussed. The equatorial plasma density transitions from an initially asymmetric configuration early in the shot to a quasisymmetric configuration during plasma production, and then returns to an asymmetric configuration when the source is shut off. The exact reasons for these changes in configuration are unknown, but convection of the loaded flux tube is suspected. The diffusion time was found to be an order of magnitude longer than the Bohm diffusion time for the period of time after the plasma source was shut off. The data collected indicate the plasma has an electron temperature of approximately 11 eV, an order of magnitude hotter than plasmas generated by cascaded arcs operating under different conditions. In addition, indirect evidence suggests that the plasma has a beta of order unity in the source region.

  3. Technology requirements for advanced earth orbital transportation systems. Volume 3: Summary report - dual mode propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hepler, A. K.; Bangsund, E. L.

    1978-01-01

    The impact of dual-mode propulsion on cost-effective technology requirements for advanced earth-orbital transportation systems is considered. Additional objectives were to determine the advantages of the best dual mode concept relative to the LO2/LH2 concept of the basic study. Normal technology requirements applicable to horizontal take-off and landing single-stage-to-orbit systems utilizing dual mode rocket propulsion were projected to the 1985 time period. These technology projections were then incorporated in a vehicle parametric design analysis for two different operational concepts of a dual mode propulsion system. The resultant performance, weights and costs of each concept were compared. The selected propulsion concept was evaluated to confirm the parametric trending/scaling of weights and to optimize the configuration.

  4. Superconducting applications in propulsion systems. Magnetic insulation for plasma propulsion devices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gonzalez, Dora E.; Karr, Gerald R.

    1990-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to review the status of knowledge of the basic concepts needed to establish design parameters for effective magnetic insulation. The objective is to estimate the effectiveness of the magnetic field in insulating the plasma, to calculate the magnitude of the magnetic field necessary to reduce the heat transfer to the walls sufficiently enough to demonstrate the potential of magnetically driven plasma rockets.

  5. ADVANCED RADIOISOTOPE HEAT SOURCE AND PROPULSION SYSTEMS FOR PLANETARY EXPLORATION

    SciTech Connect

    R. C. O'Brien; S. D. Howe; J. E. Werner

    2010-09-01

    The exploration of planetary surfaces and atmospheres may be enhanced by increasing the range and mobility of a science platform. Fundamentally, power production and availability of resources are limiting factors that must be considered for all science and exploration missions. A novel power and propulsion system is considered and discussed with reference to a long-range Mars surface exploration mission with in-situ resource utilization. Significance to applications such as sample return missions is also considered. Key material selections for radioisotope encapsulation techniques are presented.

  6. Coaxial plasma thrusters for high specific impulse propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schoenberg, Kurt F.; Gerwin, Richard A.; Barnes, Cris W.; Henins, Ivars; Mayo, Robert; Moses, Ronald, Jr.; Scarberry, Richard; Wurden, Glen

    1991-01-01

    A fundamental basis for coaxial plasma thruster performance is presented and the steady-state, ideal MHD properties of a coaxial thruster using an annular magnetic nozzle are discussed. Formulas for power usage, thrust, mass flow rate, and specific impulse are acquired and employed to assess thruster performance. The performance estimates are compared with the observed properties of an unoptimized coaxial plasma gun. These comparisons support the hypothesis that ideal MHD has an important role in coaxial plasma thruster dynamics.

  7. Advanced Space Transportation Concepts and Propulsion Technologies for a New Delivery Paradigm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robinson, John W.; McCleskey, Carey M.; Rhodes, Russel E.; Lepsch, Roger A.; Henderson, Edward M.; Joyner, Claude R., III; Levack, Daniel J. H.

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes Advanced Space Transportation Concepts and Propulsion Technologies for a New Delivery Paradigm. It builds on the work of the previous paper "Approach to an Affordable and Productive Space Transportation System". The scope includes both flight and ground system elements, and focuses on their compatibility and capability to achieve a technical solution that is operationally productive and also affordable. A clear and revolutionary approach, including advanced propulsion systems (advanced LOX rich booster engine concept having independent LOX and fuel cooling systems, thrust augmentation with LOX rich boost and fuel rich operation at altitude), improved vehicle concepts (autogeneous pressurization, turbo alternator for electric power during ascent, hot gases to purge system and keep moisture out), and ground delivery systems, was examined. Previous papers by the authors and other members of the Space Propulsion Synergy Team (SPST) focused on space flight system engineering methods, along with operationally efficient propulsion system concepts and technologies. This paper continues the previous work by exploring the propulsion technology aspects in more depth and how they may enable the vehicle designs from the previous paper. Subsequent papers will explore the vehicle design, the ground support system, and the operations aspects of the new delivery paradigm in greater detail.

  8. Theoretical components of the VASIMR plasma propulsion concept

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arefiev, Alexey V.; Breizman, Boris N.

    2004-05-01

    The ongoing development of the Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket (VASIMR) involves basic physics analysis of its three major components: helicon plasma source, ion cyclotron-resonance heating module, and magnetic nozzle. This paper presents an overview of recent theoretical efforts associated with the project. It includes (1) a first-principle model for helicon plasma source, (2) a nonlinear theory for the deposition of rf-power at the ion cyclotron frequency into plasma flow, and (3) a discussion of the plasma detachment mechanism relevant to VASIMR.

  9. Advanced Deuterium Fusion Rocket Propulsion for Manned Deep Space Missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winterberg, F.

    Excluding speculations about future breakthrough discoveries in physics, it is shown that with what is at present known, and also what is technically feasible, manned space flight to the limits of the solar system and beyond deep into the Oort cloud is quite possible. Using deuterium as the rocket fuel of choice, abundantly available on the comets of the Oort cloud, rockets driven by deuterium fusion can there be refuelled. To obtain a high thrust with high specific impulse favours the propulsion by deuterium micro-bombs, and it is shown that the ignition of deuterium micro-bombs is possible by intense GeV proton beams, generated in space by using the entire spacecraft as a magnetically insulated billion volt capacitor. The cost to develop this kind of a propulsion system in space would be very high, but it can also be developed on Earth by a magnetically insulated Super Marx Generator. Since the ignition of deuterium is theoretically possible with the Super Marx Generator, making obsolete the ignition of deuterium-tritium with a laser, where 80% of the energy goes into neutrons, this would also mean a breakthrough in fusion research, and therefore would justify the large development costs.

  10. Development of actively cooled panels for advanced propulsion systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hauber, Brett K.

    1998-01-01

    Development of actively cooled flowpath panels for the National Aero-Space Plane (NASP) propulsion system was a critical task in the development plan of the air vehicle system. This task encompassed development of design requirements and loads, and component design and testing. In the early 90's the effort focused on six cooled panel designs based in five different materials (NARloy-Z, Haynes 188, MoRe, IN909, C/C and C/SiC), each satisfying requirements in a different area of the propulsion flowpath. Eventually, three of these designs were fabricated and tested. For these tests, two primary facilities were used. The first was a radiant heating facility at Wright Patterson Air Force Base (WPAFB), and the second, a vitiated air heater at General Applied Science Laboratories (GASL) Inc. In these facilities, tests were run to validate thermal and mechanical models and to demonstrate coating durability and effectiveness. Additional tests to assess the damage tolerance of these designs were planned but never run. These tests ultimately exposed strengths and weaknesses in the designs and the analysis methods.

  11. Advanced Power and Propulsion: Insuring Human Survival and Productivity in Deep Space Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang-Diaz, Franklin R.

    2001-01-01

    Dr. Chang-Diaz gave an intriguing presentation of his research in advanced rocket propulsion and its relevance for planning and executing crewed deep space explorations. Though not necessarily exclusively Martian, his thrust looks critically at future Mars missions. Initially Dr. Chang-Diaz showed the time constraints of Mars missions due to orbital mechanics and our present chemically powered rocket technology. Since essentially all the energy required to place current generation spacecraft into a Martian trajectory must be expended in the early minutes of a flight, most of such a mission is spent in free-fall drift, captive to the gravitational forces among Earth, the Sun, and Mars. The simple physics of such chemically powered missions requires nearly a year in transit for each direction of a Mars mission. And the optimal orientations of Earth and Mars for rendezvous require further time on or around Mars to await return. These extensions of mission duration place any crew under a three-fold jeopardy: (1) physiological deconditioning (which in some aspects is still unknown and unpreventable), (2) psychological stress, and (3) ionizing radiation. This latter risk is due to exposure of crew members for extended time to the highly unpredictable and potentially lethal radiations of open space. Any gains in shortening mission duration would reap equivalent or greater benefits for these crew concerns. Dr. Chang-Diaz has applied his training and expertise (Ph.D. from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in applied plasma physics) toward development of continuous rocket propulsion which would offer great time advantages in travel, and also more launch options than are now available. He clearly explained the enormous gains from a relatively low thrust accelerative force applied essentially continuously versus the high, but short-lived propulsion of present chemical rockets. In fact, such spacecraft could be powered throughout the mission, accelerating to approximately

  12. Microwave plasma generation of hydrogen atoms for rocket propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chapman, R.; Filpus, J.; Morin, T.; Snellenberger, R.; Asmussen, J.; Hawley, M.; Kerber, R.

    1981-01-01

    A flow microwave plasma reaction system is used to study the conversion of hydrogen to hydrogen atoms as a function of pressure, power density, cavity tuning, cavity mode, and time in the plasma zone. Hydrogen atom concentration is measured down-stream from the plasma by NOCl titration. Extensive modeling of the plasma and recombination zones is performed with the plasma zone treated as a backmix reaction system and the recombination zone treated as a plug flow. The thermodynamics and kinetics of the recombination process are examined in detail to provide an understanding of the conversion of recombination energy to gas kinetic energy. It is found that cavity tuning, discharge stability, and optimum power coupling are critically dependent on the system pressure, but nearly independent of the flow rate.

  13. External Pulsed Plasma Propulsion and Its Potential for the Near Future

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bonometti, J. A.; Morton, P. J.; Schmidt, G. R.

    1999-01-01

    This paper examines External Pulsed Plasma Propulsion (EPPP), a propulsion concept that derives its thrust from plasma waves generated from a series of small, supercritical fission/fusion pulses behind an object in space. For spacecraft applications, a momentum transfer mechanism translates the intense plasma wave energy into a vehicle acceleration that is tolerable to the rest of the spacecraft and its crew. This propulsion concept offers extremely high performance in terms of both specific impulse (Isp) and thrust-to-weight ratio, something that other concepts based on available technology cannot do, The political concerns that suspended work on this type of system (i.e. termination of Project ORION) may now not be as insurmountable as they were in 1965. The appeal of EPPP stems from its relatively low cost and reusability, fast interplanetary transit times, safety and reliability, and independence from major technological breakthroughs. In fact, a first generation EPPP system based on modern-day technology (i.e., GABRIEL - an evolutionary framework- of EPPP concepts) may very well be the only form of propulsion that could realistically be developed to perform ambitious human exploration beyond Mars in the 21st century. It could also provide the most effective approach for deterrence against collision between earth and small planetary objects - a growing concern over recent years.

  14. Magnetic Flux Compression Using Detonation Plasma Armatures and Superconductor Stators: Integrated Propulsion and Power Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Litchford, Ron; Robertson, Tony; Hawk, Clark; Turner, Matt; Koelfgen, Syri

    1999-01-01

    This presentation discusses the use of magnetic flux compression for space flight applications as a propulsion and other power applications. The qualities of this technology that make it suitable for spaceflight propulsion and power, are that it has high power density, it can give multimegawatt energy bursts, and terawatt power bursts, it can produce the pulse power for low impedance dense plasma devices (e.g., pulse fusion drivers), and it can produce direct thrust. The issues of a metal vs plasma armature are discussed, and the requirements for high energy output, and fast pulse rise time requires a high speed armature. The plasma armature enables repetitive firing capabilities. The issues concerning the high temperature superconductor stator are also discussed. The concept of the radial mode pulse power generator is described. The proposed research strategy combines the use of computational modeling (i.e., magnetohydrodynamic computations, and finite element modeling) and laboratory experiments to create a demonstration device.

  15. Advanced Propulsion System Studies in High Speed Research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zola, Charles L.

    2000-01-01

    Propulsion for acceptable supersonic passenger transport aircraft is primarily impacted by the very high jet noise characteristics of otherwise attractive engines. The mixed flow turbofan, when equipped with a special ejector nozzle seems to be the best candidate engine for this task of combining low jet noise with acceptable flight performance. Design, performance, and operation aspects of mixed flow turbofans are discussed. If the special silencing nozzle is too large, too heavy, or not as effective as expected, alternative concepts in mixed flow engines should be examined. Presented herein is a brief summary of efforts performed under cooperative agreement NCC3-193. Three alternative engine concepts, conceived during this study effort, are herein presented and their limitations and potentials are described. These three concepts intentionally avoid the use of special silencing nozzles and achieve low jet noise by airflow augmentation of the engine cycle.

  16. Study of advanced electric propulsion system concept using a flywheel for electric vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Younger, F. C.; Lackner, H.

    1979-01-01

    Advanced electric propulsion system concepts with flywheels for electric vehicles are evaluated and it is predicted that advanced systems can provide considerable performance improvement over existing electric propulsion systems with little or no cost penalty. Using components specifically designed for an integrated electric propulsion system avoids the compromises that frequently lead to a loss of efficiency and to inefficient utilization of space and weight. A propulsion system using a flywheel power energy storage device can provide excellent acceleration under adverse conditions of battery degradation due either to very low temperatures or high degrees of discharge. Both electrical and mechanical means of transfer of energy to and from the flywheel appear attractive; however, development work is required to establish the safe limits of speed and energy storage for advanced flywheel designs and to achieve the optimum efficiency of energy transfer. Brushless traction motor designs using either electronic commutation schemes or dc-to-ac inverters appear to provide a practical approach to a mass producible motor, with excellent efficiency and light weight. No comparisons were made with advanced system concepts which do not incorporate a flywheel.

  17. Laboratory Demonstrations for PDE and Metals Combustion at NASA MSFC's Advanced Propulsion Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    Report provides status reporting on activities under order no. H-30549 for the period December 1 through December 31, 1999. Details the activities of the contract in the coordination of planned conduct of experiments at the MSFC Advanced Propulsion Laboratory in pulse detonation MHD power production and metals combustion.

  18. Precious bits: frame synchronization in Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Advanced Multi-Mission Operations System (AMMOS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, E.

    2001-01-01

    The Jet Propulsion Laboratory's (JPL) Advanced Multi-Mission Operations System (AMMOS) system processes data received from deep-space spacecraft, where error rates are high, bit rates are low, and every bit is precious. Frame synchronization and data extraction as performed by AMMOS enhanced data acquisition and reliability for maximum data return and validity.

  19. Theory components of the VASIMR plasma propulsion concept

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arefiev, Alexey

    2003-10-01

    The talk presents a selection of theoretical problems all motivated by the Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket (VASIMR) concept [1]. The focus of the talk is on fundamental physics aspects of VASIMR operation, which are formulated as standalone physics problems. The VASIMR device has a magnetic mirror configuration and consists of three main components: a low energy helicon plasma source; an ion cyclotron-resonance heating (ICRH) section; and a magnetic nozzle, which forms a superalfvenic outgoing plasma flow. The ICRH conditions in VASIMR are fundamentally different from the conventional ICRH, because 1) each ion passes the resonance only once; 2) the ion motion is collisionless; 3) the ion energy gain in a single pass significantly exceeds ion energy in the incoming flow. A self-consistent nonlinear model for the rf-power deposition in the ion cyclotron frequency range into a steady-state plasma flow has been developed [3], which generalizes the linear magnetic beach problem solved by T. Stix. Despite the fact that helicon sources are routinely used for plasma production, the underlying physics mechanism is yet to be established. The talk presents a first-principle theory for light-gas helicon plasma sources with a self-consistent treatment of the particle balance [4], power balance, and rf-field structure [2]. A separation of scales among the particle confinement time, the energy confinement time, and the wave period allows one to consider all three constituents separately prior to combining them into an integrated description. The theory addresses the mystery of the high efficiency of helicon sources at frequencies below the typical helicon frequency. The magnetic nozzle transforms the ion rotational motion into the longitudinal motion and it also ensures plasma detachment from the rocket. The detachment occurs when the energy density of the magnetic field drops below the kinetic energy density of the plasma flow. Then the plasma breaks free

  20. Advanced Ceramics for Use as Fuel Element Materials in Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Valentine, Peter G.; Allen, Lee R.; Shapiro, Alan P.

    2012-01-01

    With the recent start (October 2011) of the joint National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Department of Energy (DOE) Advanced Exploration Systems (AES) Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) Program, there is renewed interest in developing advanced ceramics for use as fuel element materials in nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP) systems. Three classes of fuel element materials are being considered under the NCPS Program: (a) graphite composites - consisting of coated graphite elements containing uranium carbide (or mixed carbide), (b) cermets (ceramic/metallic composites) - consisting of refractory metal elements containing uranium oxide, and (c) advanced carbides consisting of ceramic elements fabricated from uranium carbide and one or more refractory metal carbides [1]. The current development effort aims to advance the technology originally developed and demonstrated under Project Rover (1955-1973) for the NERVA (Nuclear Engine for Rocket Vehicle Application) [2].

  1. Multi-Megawatt MPD Plasma Source Operation and Modeling for Fusion Propulsion Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilland, James; Williams, Craig; Mikellides, Ioannis; Mikellides, Pavlos; Marriott, Darin

    2004-02-01

    The expansion of a high temperature fusion plasma through an expanding magnetic field is a process common to most fusion propulsion concepts. The efficiency of this process has a strong bearing on the overall performance of fusion propulsion. In order to simulate the expansion of a fusion plasma, a concept has been developed in which a high velocity plasma is first stagnated in a converging magnetic field to high (100's of eV) temperatures, then expanded though a converging/diverging magnetic nozzle. A Magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) plasma accelerator has been constructed to generate the initial high velocity plasma and is currently undergoing characterization at the Ohio State University. The device has been operated with currents up to 300 kA and power levels up to 200 MWe. The source is powered by a 1.6 MJ, 1.6 ms pulse-forming-network. In addition to experimental tests of the accelerator, computational and theoretical modeling of both the accelerator and the plasma stagnation have been performed using the MACH2 MHD code. Insights into plasma compression and attachment to magnetic field lines have led to recommended design improvements in the facility and to preliminary predictions of nozzle performance.

  2. Advanced electric propulsion system concept for electric vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raynard, A. E.; Forbes, F. E.

    1979-01-01

    Seventeen propulsion system concepts for electric vehicles were compared to determine the differences in components and battery pack to achieve the basic performance level. Design tradeoffs were made for selected configurations to find the optimum component characteristics required to meet all performance goals. The anticipated performance when using nickel-zinc batteries rather than the standard lead-acid batteries was also evaluated. The two systems selected for the final conceptual design studies included a system with a flywheel energy storage unit and a basic system that did not have a flywheel. The flywheel system meets the range requirement with either lead-acid or nickel-zinc batteries and also the acceleration of zero to 89 km/hr in 15 s. The basic system can also meet the required performance with a fully charged battery, but, when the battery approaches 20 to 30 percent depth of discharge, maximum acceleration capability gradually degrades. The flywheel system has an estimated life-cycle cost of $0.041/km using lead-acid batteries. The basic system has a life-cycle cost of $0.06/km. The basic system, using batteries meeting ISOA goals, would have a life-cycle cost of $0.043/km.

  3. Simulation of an advanced techniques of ion propulsion Rocket system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bakkiyaraj, R.

    2016-07-01

    The ion propulsion rocket system is expected to become popular with the development of Deuterium,Argon gas and Hexagonal shape Magneto hydrodynamic(MHD) techniques because of the stimulation indirectly generated the power from ionization chamber,design of thrust range is 1.2 N with 40 KW of electric power and high efficiency.The proposed work is the study of MHD power generation through ionization level of Deuterium gas and combination of two gaseous ions(Deuterium gas ions + Argon gas ions) at acceleration stage.IPR consists of three parts 1.Hexagonal shape MHD based power generator through ionization chamber 2.ion accelerator 3.Exhaust of Nozzle.Initially the required energy around 1312 KJ/mol is carrying out the purpose of deuterium gas which is changed to ionization level.The ionized Deuterium gas comes out from RF ionization chamber to nozzle through MHD generator with enhanced velocity then after voltage is generated across the two pairs of electrode in MHD.it will produce thrust value with the help of mixing of Deuterium ion and Argon ion at acceleration position.The simulation of the IPR system has been carried out by MATLAB.By comparing the simulation results with the theoretical and previous results,if reaches that the proposed method is achieved of thrust value with 40KW power for simulating the IPR system.

  4. Modeling of plasma propulsion using an inflated magnetic field and its interaction with a fast plasma stream

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saha, Saikat

    It has been proposed to extract momentum from the solar wind for spacecraft propulsion in deep space. For this purpose, a magnetic bubble is inflated from the spacecraft. The magnetic bubble inflation is affected by the expansion of a dense warm plasma in the magnetic field created by a solenoid aboard the spacecraft. The interaction between the inflated magnetic field and solar wind is likely to affect the transfer of momentum for the purpose of propulsion. The aim of our research here is to study the feasibility of this propulsion scheme by means of numerical simulations. For this purpose, we developed a 3-D hybrid particle code to model (i) the expansion of plasma in an ambient magnetic field created by a solenoid and (ii) the interaction of a plasma stream with the inflated magnetic field. The code is hybrid in the sense that ions are treated as particles and electrons as an isothermal fluid. We solve the coupled set of Maxwell's equations and the electron momentum equation for the electromagnetic fields using a predictor-corrector method. Using the 3-D simulations, we have demonstrated that when a warm and high-density plasma is injected in solenoidal magnetic fields, the trapping of the plasma in a magnetic mirror creates a dense plasma. When the trapped plasma energy densities (thermal and dynamic) exceed the magnetic energy density, the expanding plasma inflates the magnetic field lines. The extent of field inflation is seen to be greatly dependent on the injection velocity of the thermal plasma. The higher the injection velocity, the larger is the size of the inflated magnetic bubble. It is seen that the original magnetic field, which decreases as R-3, is stretched to the extent where it falls as R-alpha, where R is the distance from the center of the solenoid and alpha is found in the range 1 ≤ alpha ≤ 2. We have also demonstrated that when a plasma stream resembling the solar wind interacts with the expanding magnetic bubble, a magnetopause or bow

  5. Research Study to Identify Technology Requirements for Advanced Earth-Orbital Transportation Systems, Dual-Mode Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1977-01-01

    The results of a study of dual mode propulsion concepts applied to advanced earth orbital transportation systems using reuseable single stage to orbit vehicle concepts were summarized. Both series burn and parallel burn modes of propulsion were analyzed for vertical takeoff, horizontal landing vehicles based on accelerated technology goals. A major study objective was to assess the merits of dual mode main propulsion concepts compared to single mode concepts for carrying payloads of Space Shuttle type to orbit.

  6. Propulsion technology needs for advanced space transportation systems. [orbit maneuvering engine (space shuttle), space shuttle boosters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gregory, J. W.

    1975-01-01

    Plans are formulated for chemical propulsion technology programs to meet the needs of advanced space transportation systems from 1980 to the year 2000. The many possible vehicle applications are reviewed and cataloged to isolate the common threads of primary propulsion technology that satisfies near term requirements in the first decade and at the same time establish the technology groundwork for various potential far term applications in the second decade. Thrust classes of primary propulsion engines that are apparent include: (1) 5,000 to 30,000 pounds thrust for upper stages and space maneuvering; and (2) large booster engines of over 250,000 pounds thrust. Major classes of propulsion systems and the important subdivisions of each class are identified. The relative importance of each class is discussed in terms of the number of potential applications, the likelihood of that application materializing, and the criticality of the technology needed. Specific technology programs are described and scheduled to fulfill the anticipated primary propulsion technology requirements.

  7. Electric propulsion plasma plume interaction with “Phobos-Soil” spacecraft structural components

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nadiradze, Andrey B.; Obukhov, Vladimir A.; Popov, Garri A.

    2009-05-01

    Assessment was made by calculations for the possible consequences of the effect of plasma plume injected by the solar electric propulsion system (SEPS) on the structural components of "Phobos-Soil" spacecraft (SC). Propulsion system comprises three SPT-140 thrusters, two of which should secure the required total thrust impulse during 8000 hours of operation approximately. Variation of the solar panel (SP) properties as a result of their surface contamination with the products of erosion of thruster and SC structural components is the primary negative consequence of plasma plume effect on the SC. Calculation study for the processes of erosion, particle flow distribution, and contaminating coating formation on the SP surface was made for different SEPS arrangements. It is shown that power reduction for the landing module SP sections, which are subjected to the contaminating coating deposition to the most extent, will not exceed 5% of the nominal level.

  8. An RF heated tandem mirror plasma propulsion study

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, T.F.; Yao, X.; Peng, S.; Krueger, W.A.; Chang-Diaz, F.R.

    1989-01-01

    Experimental results on a tandem mirror hybrid plume rocket involving a three-stage system of plasma injection, heating, and subsequent injection through a magnetic nozzle are presented. In the experiments, a plasma is created by breaking down the gas with electron cyclotron resonance heating at 2 kW in the central cell, and the ion species is then heated to high temperatures with ion cyclotron resonance heating at 10 kW in the end cell. A Langmuir probe measured an electron density of 2.5 x 10 to the 16th/cu m and a temperature of 100 eV in the central cell and an ion density of 1.25 x 10 to the 17th/cu m and a temperature of 500 eV in the end cell. 6 refs.

  9. Rapid Mars transits with exhaust-modulated plasma propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang-Diaz, Franklin R.; Braden, Ellen; Johnson, Ivan; Hsu, Michael M.; Yang, Tien Fang

    1995-01-01

    The operational characteristics of the Exhaust-Modulated Plasma Rocket are described. Four basic human and robotic mission scenarios to Mars are analyzed using numerical optimization techniques at variable specific impulse and constant power. The device is well suited for 'split-sprint' missions, allowing fast, one-way low-payload human transits of 90 to 104 days, as well as slower, 180-day, high-payload robotic precursor flights. Abort capabilities, essential for human missions, are also explored.

  10. Numerical Simulation of Plasma Behavior in a Magnetic Nozzle of a Laser-plasma Driven Nuclear Electric Propulsion System

    SciTech Connect

    Kajimura, Y.; Matsuda, N.; Hayashida, K.; Maeno, A.; Nakashima, H.

    2008-12-31

    Numerical simulations of plasma behavior in a magnetic nozzle of a Laser-Plasma Driven Nuclear Electric Propulsion System are conducted. The propellant is heated and accelerated by the laser and expanded isotropically. The magnetic nozzle is a combination of solenoidal coils and used to collimate and guide the plasma to produce thrust. Simulation calculations by a three-dimensional hybrid code are conducted to examine the plasma behaviors in the nozzle and to estimate the thrust efficiency. We also estimate a fraction ({alpha}) of plasma particles leaking in the forward (spacecraft) direction. By a combination of a few coils, we could decrease {alpha} value without degrading the thrust efficiency. Finally, the shaped propellant is proposed to increase the thrust efficiency.

  11. HTS Magnets for Advanced Magnetoplasma Space Propulsion Applications

    SciTech Connect

    Carte, M.D.; Chang-Diaz, F.R. Squire, J.P.; Schwenterly, S.W.

    1999-07-12

    Plasma rockets are being considered for both Earth-orbit and interplanetary missions because their extremely high exhaust velocity and ability to modulate thrust allow very efficient use of propellant mass. In such rockets, a hydrogen or helium plasma is RF-heated and confined by axial magnetic fields produced by coils around the plasma chamber. HTS coils cooled by the propellant are desirable to increase the energy efficiency of the system. We describe a set of prototype high-temperature superconducting (HTS) coils that are being considered for the VASIMR ( Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket) thruster proposed for testing on the Radiation Technology Demonstration (RTD) satellite. Since this satellite will be launched by the Space Shuttle, for safety reasons liquid helium will be used as propellant and coolant. The coils must be designed to operate in the space environment at field levels of 1 T. This generates a unique set of requirements. Details of the overall winding geometry and current density, as well as the challenging thermal control aspects associated with a compact, minimum weight design will be discussed.

  12. Simulation of Mini-Magnetospheric Plasma Propulsion (M2P2) Interacting with an External Plasma Wind

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winglee, R. M.; Euripides, P.; Ziemba, T.; Slough, J.; Giersch, L.

    2003-01-01

    Substantial progress has been made over the last year in the development of the laboratory Mini-Magnetospheric Plasma Propulsion (M2P2) prototype. The laboratory testing has shown that that the plasma can be produced at high neutral gas efficiency, at high temperatures (a few tens of eV) with excellent confinement up to the point where chamber wall interactions dominate the physics. This paper investigates the performance of the prototype as it is opposed by an external plasma acting as a surrogate for the solar wind. The experiments were performed in 5ft diameter by 6ft long vacuum chamber at the University of Washington. The solar wind source comprised of a 33 kWe arc jet attached to a 200 kWe inductively generated plasma source. The dual plasma sources allow the interaction to be studied for different power levels, shot duration and production method. It is shown that plasma from the solar wind source (SWS) is able to penetrate the field of the M2P2 magnetic when no plasma is present. With operation of the M2P2 plasma source at only 1.5 kWe, the penetration of the SWS even at the highest power of operation at 200 kWe is stopped. This deflection is shown to be greatly enhanced over that produced by the magnet alone. In addition it is shown that with the presence of the SWS, M2P2 is able to produce enhanced magnetized plasma production out to at least 10 magnet radii where the field strength is only marginally greater than the terrestrial field. The results are consistent with the initial predictions that kWe M2P2 systems would be able to deflect several hundred kWe plasma winds to produce enhanced propulsion for a spacecraft.

  13. Performance and Environmental Assessment of an Advanced Aircraft with Open Rotor Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guynn, Mark D.; Berton, Jeffrey J.; Haller, William J.; Hendricks, Eric S.; Tong, Michael T.

    2012-01-01

    Application of high speed, advanced turboprops, or "propfans," to transonic transport aircraft received significant attention during the 1970s and 1980s when fuel efficiency was the driving focus of aeronautical research. Unfortunately, after fuel prices declined sharply there was no longer sufficient motivation to continue maturing this technology. Recent volatility in fuel prices and increasing concern for aviation s environmental impact, however, have renewed interest in unducted, open rotor propulsion. Because of the renewed interest in open rotor propulsion, the lack of publicly available up-to-date studies assessing its benefits, and NASA s focus on reducing fuel consumption, a preliminary aircraft system level study on open rotor propulsion was initiated to inform decisions concerning research in this area. New analysis processes were established to assess the characteristics of open rotor aircraft. These processes were then used to assess the performance, noise, and emissions characteristics of an advanced, single-aisle aircraft using open rotor propulsion. The results of this initial study indicate open rotor engines have the potential to provide significant reductions in fuel consumption and landing-takeoff cycle NOX emissions. Noise analysis of the study configuration indicates that an open rotor aircraft in the single-aisle class would be able to meet current noise regulations with margin.

  14. Thermal and Environmental Barrier Coatings for Advanced Propulsion Engine Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zhu, Dong-Ming; Miller, Robert A.

    2004-01-01

    Ceramic thermal and environmental barrier coatings (TEBCs) are used in gas turbine engines to protect engine hot-section components in the harsh combustion environments, and extend component lifetimes. For future high performance engines, the development of advanced ceramic barrier coating systems will allow these coatings to be used to simultaneously increase engine operating temperature and reduce cooling requirements, thereby leading to significant improvements in engine power density and efficiency. In order to meet future engine performance and reliability requirements, the coating systems must be designed with increased high temperature stability, lower thermal conductivity, and improved thermal stress and erosion resistance. In this paper, ceramic coating design and testing considerations will be described for high temperature and high-heat-flux engine applications in hot corrosion and oxidation, erosion, and combustion water vapor environments. Further coating performance and life improvements will be expected by utilizing advanced coating architecture design, composition optimization, and improved processing techniques, in conjunction with modeling and design tools.

  15. Propulsion and navigation within the advancing monolayer sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jae Hun; Serra-Picamal, Xavier; Tambe, Dhananjay T.; Zhou, Enhua H.; Park, Chan Young; Sadati, Monirosadat; Park, Jin-Ah; Krishnan, Ramaswamy; Gweon, Bomi; Millet, Emil; Butler, James P.; Trepat, Xavier; Fredberg, Jeffrey J.

    2013-09-01

    As a wound heals, or a body plan forms, or a tumour invades, observed cellular motions within the advancing cell swarm are thought to stem from yet to be observed physical stresses that act in some direct and causal mechanical fashion. Here we show that such a relationship between motion and stress is far from direct. Using monolayer stress microscopy, we probed migration velocities, cellular tractions and intercellular stresses in an epithelial cell sheet advancing towards an island on which cells cannot adhere. We found that cells located near the island exert tractions that pull systematically towards this island regardless of whether the cells approach the island, migrate tangentially along its edge, or paradoxically, recede from it. This unanticipated cell-patterning motif, which we call kenotaxis, represents the robust and systematic mechanical drive of the cellular collective to fill unfilled space.

  16. Innovation Approaches to Development and Ground Testing of Advanced Bimodal Space Power and Propulsion Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Hill, T.; Noble, C.; Martinell, J.; Borowski, S.

    2000-07-14

    The last major development effort for nuclear power and propulsion systems ended in 1993. Currently, there is not an initiative at either the National Aeronautical and Space Administration (NASA) or the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) that requires the development of new nuclear power and propulsion systems. Studies continue to show nuclear technology as a strong technical candidate to lead the way toward human exploration of adjacent planets or provide power for deep space missions, particularly a 15,000 lbf bimodal nuclear system with 115 kW power capability. The development of nuclear technology for space applications would require technology development in some areas and a major flight qualification program. The last major ground test facility considered for nuclear propulsion qualification was the U.S. Air Force/DOE Space Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Project. Seven years have passed since that effort, and the questions remain the same, how to qualify nuclear power and propulsion systems for future space flight. It can be reasonably assumed that much of the nuclear testing required to qualify a nuclear system for space application will be performed at DOE facilities as demonstrated by the Nuclear Rocket Engine Reactor Experiment (NERVA) and Space Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (SNTP) programs. The nuclear infrastructure to support testing in this country is aging and getting smaller, though facilities still exist to support many of the technology development needs. By renewing efforts, an innovative approach to qualifying these systems through the use of existing facilities either in the U.S. (DOE's Advance Test Reactor, High Flux Irradiation Facility and the Contained Test Facility) or overseas should be possible.

  17. Innovative Approaches to Development and Ground Testing of Advanced Bimodal Space Power and Propulsion Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Hill, Thomas Johnathan; Noble, Cheryl Ann; Noble, C.; Martinell, John Stephen; Borowski, S.

    2000-07-01

    The last major development effort for nuclear power and propulsion systems ended in 1993. Currently, there is not an initiative at either the National Aeronautical and Space Administration (NASA) or the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) that requires the development of new nuclear power and propulsion systems. Studies continue to show nuclear technology as a strong technical candidate to lead the way toward human exploration of adjacent planets or provide power for deep space missions, particularly a 15,000 lbf bimodal nuclear system with 115 kW power capability. The development of nuclear technology for space applications would require technology development in some areas and a major flight qualification program. The last major ground test facility considered for nuclear propulsion qualification was the U.S. Air Force/DOE Space Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Project. Seven years have passed since that effort, and the questions remain the same, how to qualify nuclear power and propulsion systems for future space flight. It can be reasonable assumed that much of the nuclear testing required to qualify a nuclear system for space application will be performed at DOE facilities as demonstrated by the Nuclear Rocket Engine Reactor Experiment (NERVA) and Space Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (SNTP) programs. The nuclear infrastructure to support testing in this country is aging and getting smaller, though facilities still exist to support many of the technology development needs. By renewing efforts, an innovative approach to qualifying these systems through the use of existing facilities either in the U.S. (DOE's Advance Test Reactor, High Flux Irradiation Facility and the Contained Test Facility) or overseas should be possible.

  18. Thermal and Environmental Barrier Coating Development for Advanced Propulsion Engine Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zhu, Dongming; Miller, Robert A.; Fox, Dennis S.

    2008-01-01

    Ceramic thermal and environmental barrier coatings (TEBCs) are used in gas turbine engines to protect engine hot-section components in the harsh combustion environments, and extend component lifetimes. Advanced TEBCs that have significantly lower thermal conductivity, better thermal stability and higher toughness than current coatings will be beneficial for future low emission and high performance propulsion engine systems. In this paper, ceramic coating design and testing considerations will be described for turbine engine high temperature and high-heat-flux applications. Thermal barrier coatings for metallic turbine airfoils and thermal/environmental barrier coatings for SiC/SiC ceramic matrix composite (CMC) components for future supersonic aircraft propulsion engines will be emphasized. Further coating capability and durability improvements for the engine hot-section component applications can be expected by utilizing advanced modeling and design tools.

  19. Development of Sensors for Ceramic Components in Advanced Propulsion Systems. Phase 2; Temperature Sensor Systems Evaluation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Atkinson, W. H.; Cyr, M. A.; Strange, R. R.

    1994-01-01

    The 'development of sensors for ceramic components in advanced propulsion systems' program is divided into two phases. The objectives of Phase 1 were to analyze, evaluate and recommend sensor concepts for the measurement of surface temperature, strain and heat flux on ceramic components for advanced propulsion systems. The results of this effort were previously published in NASA CR-182111. As a result of Phase 1, three approaches were recommended for further development: pyrometry, thin-film sensors, and thermographic phosphors. The objective of Phase 2 were to fabricate and conduct laboratory demonstration tests of these systems. Six materials, mutually agreed upon by NASA and Pratt & Whitney, were investigated under this program. This report summarizes the Phase 2 effort and provides conclusions and recommendations for each of the categories evaluated.

  20. Advanced Transportation System Studies. Technical Area 3: Alternate Propulsion Subsystems Concepts. Volume 3; Program Cost Estimates

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levack, Daniel J. H.

    2000-01-01

    The objective of this contract was to provide definition of alternate propulsion systems for both earth-to-orbit (ETO) and in-space vehicles (upper stages and space transfer vehicles). For such propulsion systems, technical data to describe performance, weight, dimensions, etc. was provided along with programmatic information such as cost, schedule, needed facilities, etc. Advanced technology and advanced development needs were determined and provided. This volume separately presents the various program cost estimates that were generated under three tasks: the F- IA Restart Task, the J-2S Restart Task, and the SSME Upper Stage Use Task. The conclusions, technical results , and the program cost estimates are described in more detail in Volume I - Executive Summary and in individual Final Task Reports.

  1. Kuiper Belt Object Orbiter Using Advanced Radioisotope Power Sources and Electric Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oleson, Steven R.; McGuire, Melissa L.; Dankanich, John; Colozza, Anthony; Schmitz, Paul; Khan, Omair; Drexler, Jon; Fittje, James

    2011-01-01

    A joint NASA GRC/JPL design study was performed for the NASA Radioisotope Power Systems Office to explore the use of radioisotope electric propulsion for flagship class missions. The Kuiper Belt Object Orbiter is a flagship class mission concept projected for launch in the 2030 timeframe. Due to the large size of a flagship class science mission larger radioisotope power system building blocks were conceptualized to provide the roughly 4 kW of power needed by the NEXT ion propulsion system and the spacecraft. Using REP the spacecraft is able to rendezvous with and orbit a Kuiper Belt object in 16 years using either eleven (no spare) 420 W advanced RTGs or nine (with a spare) 550 W advanced Stirling Radioisotope systems. The design study evaluated integrating either system and estimated impacts on cost as well as required General Purpose Heat Source requirements.

  2. Advanced transportation system studies technical area 3: Alternate propulsion subsystem concepts, volume 3

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levak, Daniel

    1993-01-01

    The objective of this contract was to provide definition of alternate propulsion systems for both earth-to-orbit (ETO) and in-space vehicles (upper stages and space transfer vehicles). For such propulsion systems, technical data to describe performance, weight, dimensions, etc. was provided along with programmatic information such as cost, schedule, needed facilities, etc. Advanced technology and advanced development needs were determined and provided. This volume separately presents the various program cost estimates that were generated under three tasks: the F-1A Restart Task, the J-2S Restart Task, and the SSME Upper Stage Use Task. The conclusions, technical results, and the program cost estimates are described in more detail in Volume 1 - Executive Summary and in individual Final Task Reports.

  3. Advanced Transportation System Studies. Technical Area 3: Alternate Propulsion Subsystem Concepts. Volume 1; Executive Summary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levack, Daniel J. H.

    2000-01-01

    The Alternate Propulsion Subsystem Concepts contract had seven tasks defined that are reported under this contract deliverable. The tasks were: FAA Restart Study, J-2S Restart Study, Propulsion Database Development. SSME Upper Stage Use. CERs for Liquid Propellant Rocket Engines. Advanced Low Cost Engines, and Tripropellant Comparison Study. The two restart studies, F-1A and J-2S, generated program plans for restarting production of each engine. Special emphasis was placed on determining changes to individual parts due to obsolete materials, changes in OSHA and environmental concerns, new processes available, and any configuration changes to the engines. The Propulsion Database Development task developed a database structure and format which is easy to use and modify while also being comprehensive in the level of detail available. The database structure included extensive engine information and allows for parametric data generation for conceptual engine concepts. The SSME Upper Stage Use task examined the changes needed or desirable to use the SSME as an upper stage engine both in a second stage and in a translunar injection stage. The CERs for Liquid Engines task developed qualitative parametric cost estimating relationships at the engine and major subassembly level for estimating development and production costs of chemical propulsion liquid rocket engines. The Advanced Low Cost Engines task examined propulsion systems for SSTO applications including engine concept definition, mission analysis. trade studies. operating point selection, turbomachinery alternatives, life cycle cost, weight definition. and point design conceptual drawings and component design. The task concentrated on bipropellant engines, but also examined tripropellant engines. The Tripropellant Comparison Study task provided an unambiguous comparison among various tripropellant implementation approaches and cycle choices, and then compared them to similarly designed bipropellant engines in the

  4. Pluto/Kuiper Missions with Advanced Electric Propulsion and Power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oleson, S. R.; Patterson, M. J.; Schrieber, J.; Gefert, L. P.

    2001-01-01

    In response to a request by NASA Code SD Deep Space Exploration Technology Program, NASA Glenn Research center performed a study to identify advanced technology options to perform a Pluto/Kuiper mission without depending on a 2004 Jupiter Gravity Assist, but still arriving before 2020. A concept using a direct trajectory with small, sub-kilowatt ion thrusters and Stirling radioisotope power system was shown to allow the same or smaller launch vehicle class (EELV) as the chemical 2004 baseline and allow launch in any year and arrival in the 2014 to 2020 timeframe. With the nearly constant power available from the radioisotope power source such small ion propelled spacecraft could explore many of the outer planetary targets. Such studies are already underway. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  5. Outer Planet Exploration with Advanced Radioisotope Electric Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oleson, Steven; Gefert, Leon; Patterson, Michael; Schreiber, Jeffrey; Benson, Scott; McAdams, Jim; Ostdiek, Paul

    2002-01-01

    In response to a request by the NASA Deep Space Exploration Technology Program, NASA Glenn Research Center conducted a study to identify advanced technology options to perform a Pluto/Kuiper mission without depending on a 2004 Jupiter Gravity Assist, but still arriving before 2020. A concept using a direct trajectory with small, sub-kilowatt ion thrusters and Stirling radioisotope power systems was shown to allow the same or smaller launch vehicle class as the chemical 2004 baseline and allow a launch slip and still flyby in the 2014 to 2020 timeframe. With this promising result the study was expanded to use a radioisotope power source for small electrically propelled orbiter spacecraft for outer planet targets such as Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto.

  6. Large-Scale Mini-Magnetosphere Plasma Propulsion (M2P2) Experiments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winglee, R. M.; Slough, J.; Ziemba, T.; Euripides, P.; Adrian, M. L.; Gallagher, D.; Craven, P.; Tomlinson, W.; Cravens, J.; Burch, J.; Whitaker, Ann F. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Mini-Magnetosphere Plasma Propulsion (M2P2) is an innovative plasma propulsion system that has the potential to propel spacecraft at unprecedented speeds of 50 to 80 km per second with a low-power requirement of approx. 1 kW per 100 kg of payload and approx. 1 kg of neutral gas [fuel] consumption per day of acceleration. Acceleration periods from several days to a few months are envisioned. High specific impulse and efficiency are achieved through coupling of the spacecraft to the 400 km per second solar wind through an artificial magnetosphere. The mini-magnetosphere or inflated magnetic bubble is produced by the injection of cold dense plasma into a spacecraft-generated magnetic field envelope. Magnetic bubble inflation is driven by electromagnetic processes thereby avoiding the material and deployment problems faced by mechanical solar sail designs, Here, we present the theoretical design of M2P2 as well as initial results from experimental testing of an M2P2 prototype demonstrating: 1) inflation of the dipole magnetic field geometry through the internal injection of cold plasma; and 2) deflection of and artificial solar wind by the prototype M2P2 system. In addition, we present plans for direct laboratory measurement of thrust imparted to a prototype M2P2 by an artificial solar wind during the summer of 2001.

  7. Large-Scale Mini-Magnetosphere Plasma Propulsion (M2P2) Experiments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winglee, R. M.; Slough, J.; Ziemba, T.; Euripides, P.; Gallagher, D.; Craven, P.; Adrian, M. L.; Tomlinson, W.; Cravens, J.; Burch, J.; Rose, M. Franklin (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Mini-Magnetosphere Plasma Propulsion (M2P2) is an innovative plasma propulsion system that has the potential to propel spacecraft at unprecedented speeds of 50 to 80 km/s, with a low power requirement of approx. 1 kW per 100 kg of payload and -1 kg of neutral gas [fuel] consumption per day of acceleration. Acceleration periods from several days to a few months are envisioned. High specific impulse and efficiency are achieved through coupling of the spacecraft to the 400 km/s. solar wind through an artificial magnetosphere. The mini-magnetosphere or inflated magnetic bubble is produced by the injection of cold dense plasma into a spacecraft-generated magnetic field envelope. Magnetic bubble inflation is driven by electromagnetic processes thereby avoiding the material and deployment problems faced by mechanical solar sail designs. Here, we present the theoretical design of M2P2 as well as initial results from experimental testing of an M2P2 prototype demonstrating: 1) inflation of the dipole magnetic field geometry through the internal injection of cold plasma; and 2) deflection of and artificial solar wind by the prototype M2P2 system. In addition, we present plans for direct laboratory measurement of thrust imparted to a prototype M2P2 by an artificial solar wind during the summer of 2001.

  8. Advanced Propulsion Systems Study for General Aviation Aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mount, R.

    2003-01-01

    This study defines a family of advanced technology Stratified Charge Rotary Engines (SCRE) appropriate for the enablement of the development of a new generation of general aviation aircraft. High commonality, affordability, and environmental compatibility are considerations influencing the family composition and ratings. The SCRE family is comprised of three engines in the 70 Series (40 cu in. displacement per rotor), i.e. one, two, and four rotor and two engines in the 170 Series (105 cu in. displacement per rotor), i.e., two and four rotor. The two rotor engines are considered the primary engines in each series. A wide power range is considered covering 125 to 2500 HP through growth and compounding/dual pac considerations. Mission requirements, TBO, FAA Certification, engine development cycles, and costs are examined. Comparisons to current and projected reciprocating and turbine engine configurations in the 125 to 1000 HP class are provided. Market impact, estimated sales, and U.S. job creation (R&D, manufacturing and infractures) are examined.

  9. “You can get there from here”: Advanced low cost propulsion concepts for small satellites beyond LEO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baker, Adam M.; da Silva Curiel, Alex; Schaffner, Jake; Sweeting, Martin

    2005-07-01

    microsatellite from a typical 700 km sun-synchronous orbit to a lower or higher orbit using a low cost 40 N thrust concentrated hydrogen peroxide/kerosene bipropellant engine. A spin stabilized 'tug' concept capable of providing between 130 and 300 m/s of deltaV to the payload is described. Transfer of an enhanced microsatellite from LEO to lunar orbit using a novel, storable propellant solar thermal propulsion system under development at the Surrey Space Centre. The solar thermal propulsion unit is designed for low cost small satellite support and will be compared with a more traditional approach using and industry standard storable bipropellant chemical engine. Nanosatellite manoeuvring for formation flying using advanced low power electric propulsion. A colloid thruster system concept is planned for development jointly between SSTL, Queen Mary University London and Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, UK. The colloid thruster system is designed to complement an existing butane resistojet to give full 3-axis manoeuvrability to an upgraded SNAP nanosatellite platform which could be reflown in 2007 alongside ESA's Proba 2 technology demonstrator microsatellite. A comparison between low power resistojets, a colloid thruster system, and pulsed plasma thrusters for orbit manoeuvring of microsatellites will be made. This paper's final section will briefly describe some of the interplanetary missions which have been considered at the Surrey Space Centre, and will highlight the few as yet practical solutions for sending small spacecraft on high deltaV missions without the use of a costly upper stage.

  10. Plasma Heating: An Advanced Technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    The Mercury and Apollo spacecraft shields were designed to protect astronauts from high friction temperatures (well over 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit) when re-entering the Earth's atmosphere. It was necessary to test and verify the heat shield materials on Earth before space flight. After exhaustive research and testing, NASA decided to use plasma heating as a heat source. This technique involves passing a strong electric current through a rarefied gas to create a plasma (ionized gas) that produces an intensely hot flame. Although NASA did not invent the concept, its work expanded the market for commercial plasma heating systems. One company, Plasma Technology Corporation (PTC), was founded by a member of the team that developed the Re-entry Heating Simulator at Ames Research Center (ARC). Dr. Camacho, President of PTC, believes the technology has significant environmental applications. These include toxic waste disposal, hydrocarbon, decomposition, medical waste disposal, asbestos waste destruction, and chemical and radioactive waste disposal.

  11. Initial Assessment of Open Rotor Propulsion Applied to an Advanced Single-Aisle Aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guynn, Mark D.; Berton, Jeffrey J.; Hendricks, Eric S.; Tong, Michael T.; Haller, William J.; Thurman, Douglas R.

    2011-01-01

    Application of high speed, advanced turboprops, or propfans, to subsonic transport aircraft received significant attention and research in the 1970s and 1980s when fuel efficiency was the driving focus of aeronautical research. Recent volatility in fuel prices and concern for aviation s environmental impact have renewed interest in unducted, open rotor propulsion, and revived research by NASA and a number of engine manufacturers. Unfortunately, in the two decades that have passed since open rotor concepts were thoroughly investigated, NASA has lost experience and expertise in this technology area. This paper describes initial efforts to re-establish NASA s capability to assess aircraft designs with open rotor propulsion. Specifically, methodologies for aircraft-level sizing, performance analysis, and system-level noise analysis are described. Propulsion modeling techniques have been described in a previous paper. Initial results from application of these methods to an advanced single-aisle aircraft using open rotor engines based on historical blade designs are presented. These results indicate open rotor engines have the potential to provide large reductions in fuel consumption and emissions. Initial noise analysis indicates that current noise regulations can be met with old blade designs and modern, noiseoptimized blade designs are expected to result in even lower noise levels. Although an initial capability has been established and initial results obtained, additional development work is necessary to make NASA s open rotor system analysis capability on par with existing turbofan analysis capabilities.

  12. Magnetic-Nozzle Studies for Fusion Propulsion Applications: Gigawatt Plasma Source Operation and Magnetic Nozzle Analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gilland, James H.; Mikekkides, Ioannis; Mikellides, Pavlos; Gregorek, Gerald; Marriott, Darin

    2004-01-01

    This project has been a multiyear effort to assess the feasibility of a key process inherent to virtually all fusion propulsion concepts: the expansion of a fusion-grade plasma through a diverging magnetic field. Current fusion energy research touches on this process only indirectly through studies of plasma divertors designed to remove the fusion products from a reactor. This project was aimed at directly addressing propulsion system issues, without the expense of constructing a fusion reactor. Instead, the program designed, constructed, and operated a facility suitable for simulating fusion reactor grade edge plasmas, and to examine their expansion in an expanding magnetic nozzle. The approach was to create and accelerate a dense (up to l0(exp 20)/m) plasma, stagnate it in a converging magnetic field to convert kinetic energy to thermal energy, and examine the subsequent expansion of the hot (100's eV) plasma in a subsequent magnetic nozzle. Throughout the project, there has been a parallel effort between theoretical and numerical design and modelling of the experiment and the experiment itself. In particular, the MACH2 code was used to design and predict the performance of the magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) plasma accelerator, and to design and predict the design and expected behavior for the magnetic field coils that could be added later. Progress to date includes the theoretical accelerator design and construction, development of the power and vacuum systems to accommodate the powers and mass flow rates of interest to out research, operation of the accelerator and comparison to theoretical predictions, and computational analysis of future magnetic field coils and the expected performance of an integrated source-nozzle experiment.

  13. Propulsion and Power Generation Capabilities of a Dense Plasma Focus (DPF) Fusion System for Future Military Aerospace Vehicles

    SciTech Connect

    Knecht, Sean D.; Mead, Franklin B.; Miley, George H.; Froning, David

    2006-01-20

    The objective of this study was to perform a parametric evaluation of the performance and interface characteristics of a dense plasma focus (DPF) fusion system in support of a USAF advanced military aerospace vehicle concept study. This vehicle is an aerospace plane that combines clean 'aneutronic' dense plasma focus (DPF) fusion power and propulsion technology, with advanced 'lifting body'-like airframe configurations utilizing air-breathing MHD propulsion and power technology within a reusable single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) vehicle. The applied approach was to evaluate the fusion system details (geometry, power, T/W, system mass, etc.) of a baseline p-11B DPF propulsion device with Q = 3.0 and thruster efficiency, {eta}prop = 90% for a range of thrust, Isp and capacitor specific energy values. The baseline details were then kept constant and the values of Q and {eta}prop were varied to evaluate excess power generation for communication systems, pulsed-train plasmoid weapons, ultrahigh-power lasers, and gravity devices. Thrust values were varied between 100 kN and 1,000 kN with Isp of 1,500 s and 2,000 s, while capacitor specific energy was varied from 1 - 15 kJ/kg. Q was varied from 3.0 to 6.0, resulting in gigawatts of excess power. Thruster efficiency was varied from 0.9 to 1.0, resulting in hundreds of megawatts of excess power. Resulting system masses were on the order of 10's to 100's of metric tons with thrust-to-weight ratios ranging from 2.1 to 44.1, depending on capacitor specific energy. Such a high thrust/high Isp system with a high power generation capability would allow military versatility in sub-orbital space, as early as 2025, and beyond as early as 2050. This paper presents the results that coincide with a total system mass between 15 and 20 metric tons.

  14. Influence of Surface Radius Curvature on Laser Plasma Propulsion with Ablation Water Propellant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Tian; Zheng, Zhiyuan; Zhang, Siqi; Tang, Weichong; Xiao, Ke; Liang, Wenfei; Gao, Lu; Gao, Hua

    2016-10-01

    The surface shape of liquid water is well controlled during nanosecond pulse laser ablation plasma propulsion. In this study, we measured the effect of the shape on the coupling coefficient and the specific impulse. We found that the coupling coefficient and specific impulse could be optimized by varying the surface convexity. Based on the analysis of the surface radius curvature, we demonstrate that the convex surface changes the laser focal positions to achieve high efficiency. supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 10905049) and Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities of China (Nos. 53200859165, 2562010050)

  15. Advances and Challenges in Computational Plasma Science

    SciTech Connect

    W.M. Tang; V.S. Chan

    2005-01-03

    Scientific simulation, which provides a natural bridge between theory and experiment, is an essential tool for understanding complex plasma behavior. Recent advances in simulations of magnetically-confined plasmas are reviewed in this paper with illustrative examples chosen from associated research areas such as microturbulence, magnetohydrodynamics, and other topics. Progress has been stimulated in particular by the exponential growth of computer speed along with significant improvements in computer technology.

  16. Propulsion Research at the Propulsion Research Center of the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blevins, John; Rodgers, Stephen

    2003-01-01

    The Propulsion Research Center of the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center is engaged in research activities aimed at providing the bases for fundamental advancement of a range of space propulsion technologies. There are four broad research themes. Advanced chemical propulsion studies focus on the detailed chemistry and transport processes for high-pressure combustion, and on the understanding and control of combustion stability. New high-energy propellant research ranges from theoretical prediction of new propellant properties through experimental characterization propellant performance, material interactions, aging properties, and ignition behavior. Another research area involves advanced nuclear electric propulsion with new robust and lightweight materials and with designs for advanced fuels. Nuclear electric propulsion systems are characterized using simulated nuclear systems, where the non-nuclear power source has the form and power input of a nuclear reactor. This permits detailed testing of nuclear propulsion systems in a non-nuclear environment. In-space propulsion research is focused primarily on high power plasma thruster work. New methods for achieving higher thrust in these devices are being studied theoretically and experimentally. Solar thermal propulsion research is also underway for in-space applications. The fourth of these research areas is advanced energetics. Specific research here includes the containment of ion clouds for extended periods. This is aimed at proving the concept of antimatter trapping and storage for use ultimately in propulsion applications. Another activity in this involves research into lightweight magnetic technology for space propulsion applications.

  17. Dual-Fuel Propulsion in Single-Stage Advanced Manned Launch System Vehicle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lepsch, Roger A., Jr.; Stanley, Douglas O.; Unal, Resit

    1995-01-01

    As part of the United States Advanced Manned Launch System study to determine a follow-on, or complement, to the Space Shuttle, a reusable single-stage-to-orbit concept utilizing dual-fuel rocket propulsion has been examined. Several dual-fuel propulsion concepts were investigated. These include: a separate-engine concept combining Russian RD-170 kerosene-fueled engines with space shuttle main engine-derivative engines: the kerosene- and hydrogen-fueled Russian RD-701 engine; and a dual-fuel, dual-expander engine. Analysis to determine vehicle weight and size characteristics was performed using conceptual-level design techniques. A response-surface methodology for multidisciplinary design was utilized to optimize the dual-fuel vehicles with respect to several important propulsion-system and vehicle design parameters, in order to achieve minimum empty weight. The tools and methods employed in the analysis process are also summarized. In comparison with a reference hydrogen- fueled single-stage vehicle, results showed that the dual-fuel vehicles were from 10 to 30% lower in empty weight for the same payload capability, with the dual-expander engine types showing the greatest potential.

  18. Electro-optic architecture for servicing sensors and actuators in advanced aircraft propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Poppel, G. L.; Glasheen, W. M.

    1989-01-01

    A detailed design of a fiber optic propulsion control system, integrating favored sensors and electro-optics architecture is presented. Layouts, schematics, and sensor lists describe an advanced fighter engine system model. Components and attributes of candidate fiber optic sensors are identified, and evaluation criteria are used in a trade study resulting in favored sensors for each measurand. System architectural ground rules were applied to accomplish an electro-optics architecture for the favored sensors. A key result was a considerable reduction in signal conductors. Drawings, schematics, specifications, and printed circuit board layouts describe the detailed system design, including application of a planar optical waveguide interface.

  19. Investigation of advanced propulsion technologies: The RAM accelerator and the flowing gas radiation heater

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bruckner, A. P.; Knowlen, C.; Mattick, A. T.; Hertzberg, A.

    1992-01-01

    The two principal areas of advanced propulsion investigated are the ram accelerator and the flowing gas radiation heater. The concept of the ram accelerator is presented as a hypervelocity launcher for large-scale aeroballistic range applications in hypersonics and aerothermodynamics research. The ram accelerator is an in-bore ramjet device in which a projectile shaped like the centerbody of a supersonic ramjet is propelled in a stationary tube filled with a tailored combustible gas mixture. Combustion on and behind the projectile generates thrust which accelerates it to very high velocities. The acceleration can be tailored for the 'soft launch' of instrumented models. The distinctive reacting flow phenomena that have been observed in the ram accelerator are relevant to the aerothermodynamic processes in airbreathing hypersonic propulsion systems and are useful for validating sophisticated CFD codes. The recently demonstrated scalability of the device and the ability to control the rate of acceleration offer unique opportunities for the use of the ram accelerator as a large-scale hypersonic ground test facility. The flowing gas radiation receiver is a novel concept for using solar energy to heat a working fluid for space power or propulsion. Focused solar radiation is absorbed directly in a working gas, rather than by heat transfer through a solid surface. Previous theoretical analysis had demonstrated that radiation trapping reduces energy loss compared to that of blackbody receivers, and enables higher efficiencies and higher peak temperatures. An experiment was carried out to measure the temperature profile of an infrared-active gas and demonstrate the effect of radiation trapping. The success of this effort validates analytical models of heat transfer in this receiver, and confirms the potential of this approach for achieving high efficiency space power and propulsion.

  20. Advances in Plasma-Filled Microwave Sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goebel, Dan M.

    1998-11-01

    Significant improvements in the performance of high power microwave tubes have been achieved in recent years by the introduction of plasma into the beam- coupling structures of the devices. Plasma has been credited with increasing the maximum electron beam current, frequency bandwidth, electrical efficiency and reducing or eliminating the need for guiding magnetic fields in microwave sources. These advances are critically important for the development of high power, frequency agile microwave systems where size and weight are important. Conversely, plasma has been blamed for causing noise, instabilities, power variations and pulse-length limitations in microwave tubes for many years. Recent experimental and theoretical studies have demonstrated that introducing the right amount of plasma in a controlled manner can be beneficial in the areas described above. Enhanced beam propagation at lower magnetic fields and higher beam current levels due to the space-charge neutralization by plasma can be realized provided that the neutralization fraction is fairly stable and maintained near a value of one for the duration of the desired pulse length. The generation of hybrid waves in plasma-filled slow-wave structures (SWS) operating near cutoff has resulted in an increased electric field on axis and improved coupling to solid beams in both helix and coupled-cavity SWS, and wider coupling-aperture pass-bands and frequency bandwidth in coupled-cavity devices. In the event of excess plasma generation in these TWTs or BWOs, the device structures rapidly approach cutoff or breakdown and the beam forms instabilities, which degrades the output power level and pulse length. Recent experimental and theoretical advances in this field including plasma implementation techniques in the gun and circuit will be presented, and the benefits and limitations of plasma filling of microwave sources will be shown and discussed.

  1. Investigation of a Light Gas Helicon Plasma Source for the VASIMR Space Propulsion System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Squire, J. P.; Chang-Diaz, F. R.; Jacobson, V. T.; Glover, T. W.; Baity, F. W.; Carter, M. D.; Goulding, R. H.; Bengtson, R. D.; Bering, E. A., III

    2003-01-01

    An efficient plasma source producing a high-density (approx.10(exp 19/cu m) light gas (e.g. H, D, or He) flowing plasma with a high degree of ionization is a critical component of the Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket (VASIMR) concept. We are developing an antenna to apply ICRF power near the fundamental ion cyclotron resonance to further accelerate the plasma ions to velocities appropriate for space propulsion applications. The high degree of ionization and a low vacuum background pressure are important to eliminate the problem of radial losses due to charge exchange. We have performed parametric (e.g. gas flow, power (0.5 - 3 kW), magnetic field , frequency (25 and 50 MHz)) studies of a helicon operating with gas (H2 D2, He, N2 and Ar) injected at one end with a high magnetic mirror downstream of the antenna. We have explored operation with a cusp and a mirror field upstream. Plasma flows into a low background vacuum (<10(exp -4) torr) at velocities higher than the ion sound speed. High densities (approx. 10(exp 19/cu m) have been achieved at the location where ICRF will be applied, just downstream of the magnetic mirror.

  2. Advanced supersonic propulsion study, phases 3 and 4. [variable cycle engines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allan, R. D.; Joy, W.

    1977-01-01

    An evaluation of various advanced propulsion concepts for supersonic cruise aircraft resulted in the identification of the double-bypass variable cycle engine as the most promising concept. This engine design utilizes special variable geometry components and an annular exhaust nozzle to provide high take-off thrust and low jet noise. The engine also provides good performance at both supersonic cruise and subsonic cruise. Emission characteristics are excellent. The advanced technology double-bypass variable cycle engine offers an improvement in aircraft range performance relative to earlier supersonic jet engine designs and yet at a lower level of engine noise. Research and technology programs required in certain design areas for this engine concept to realize its potential benefits include refined parametric analysis of selected variable cycle engines, screening of additional unconventional concepts, and engine preliminary design studies. Required critical technology programs are summarized.

  3. Pulsed Plasma Propulsion - Making CubeSat Missions Beyond Low Earth Orbit Possible

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Northway, P.

    2015-12-01

    As CubeSat missions become more and more popular means of scientific exploration of space, the current direction of interest is to utilize them in areas beyond low earth orbit. The University of Washington CubeSat program focuses on examining possible mission scenarios in addition to technology development and integration. Specifically, we are developing an inert CubeSat propulsion system in the form of a pulsed plasma thruster (PPT) capable of orbit maneuvers. Such a system would allow for missions at the Earth beyond LEO, extended missions at the Moon, and even missions at Europa, when assisted to the Jovian system. We will discuss how starting with a CubeSat design using PPTs for orbital maneuvers, other developing compact technology can be adapted to create a full suite of systems that would meet the requirements for a mission traveling outside low earth orbit.

  4. Propulsion system advances that enable a reusable Liquid Fly Back Booster (LFBB)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keith, E. L.; Rothschild, W. J.

    1998-01-01

    This paper provides an overview of the booster propulsion system for the Liquid Fly Back Booster (LFBB). This includes, system requirements, design approach, concept of operations, reliability, safety and cost assumptions. The paper summarizes the findings of the Boeing propulsion team that has been studying the LFBB feasibility as a booster replacement for the Space Shuttle. This paper will discuss recent advances including a new generation of kerosene and oxygen rich pre-burner staged combustion cycle main rocket engines. The engine reliability and safety is expected to be much higher than current standards by adding extra operating margins into the design and normally operating the engines at 75% of engine rated power. This allows for engine out capability. The new generation of main engines operates at significantly higher chamber pressure than the prior generation of gas generator cycle engines. The oxygen rich pre-burner engine cycle, unlike the fuel rich gas generator cycle, results in internally self-cleaning firings which facilitates reusability. Maintenance is further enhanced with integrated health monitoring to improve safety and turn-around efficiency. The maintainability of the LFBB LOX/kerosene engines is being improved by designing the vehicle/engine interfaces for easy access to key engine components.

  5. Propulsion Simulations Using Advanced Turbulence Models with the Unstructured Grid CFD Tool, TetrUSS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abdol-Hamid, Khaled S.; Frink, Neal T.; Deere, Karen A.; Pandya, Mohangna J.

    2004-01-01

    A computational investigation has been completed to assess the capability of TetrUSS for exhaust nozzle flows. Three configurations were chosen for this study (1) an axisymmetric supersonic jet, (2) a transonic axisymmetric boattail with solid sting operated at different Reynolds number and Mach number, and (3) an isolated non-axisymmetric nacelle with a supersonic cruise nozzle. These configurations were chosen because existing experimental data provided a means for measuring the ability of TetrUSS for simulating complex nozzle flows. The main objective of this paper is to validate the implementation of advanced two-equation turbulence models in the unstructured-grid CFD code USM3D for propulsion flow cases. USM3D is the flow solver of the TetrUSS system. Three different turbulence models, namely, Menter Shear Stress Transport (SST), basic k epsilon, and the Spalart-Allmaras (SA) are used in the present study. The results are generally in agreement with other implementations of these models in structured-grid CFD codes. Results indicate that USM3D provides accurate simulations for complex aerodynamic configurations with propulsion integration.

  6. Propulsion System Advances that Enable a Reusable Liquid Fly Back Booster (LFBB)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keith, Edward L.; Rothschild, William J.

    1998-01-01

    This paper provides an overview of the booster propulsion system for the Liquid Fly Back Booster (LFBB). This includes, system requirements, design approach, concept of operations, reliability, safety and cost assumptions. The paper summarizes the findings of the Boeing propulsion team that has been studying the LFBB feasibility as a booster replacement for the Space Shuttle. This paper will discuss recent advances including a new generation of kerosene and oxygen rich pre-burner staged combustion cycle main rocket engines. The engine reliability and safety is expected to be much higher than current standards by adding extra operating margins into the design and normally operating the engines at 75% of engine rated power. This allows for engine out capability. The new generation of main engines operates at significantly higher chamber pressure than the prior generation of gas generator cycle engines. The oxygen rich pre-burner engine cycle, unlike the fuel rich gas generator cycle, results in internally self-cleaning firings which facilitates reusability. Maintenance is further enhanced with integrated health monitoring to improve safety and turn-around efficiency. The maintainability of the LFBB LOX / kerosene engines is being improved by designing the vehicle/engine interfaces for easy access to key engine components.

  7. Aerodynamics of the advanced launch system (ALS) propulsion and avionics (P/A) module

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ferguson, Stan; Savage, Dick

    1992-01-01

    This paper discusses the design and testing of candidate Advanced Launch System (ALS) Propulsion and Avionics (P/A) Module configurations. The P/A Module is a key element of future launch systems because it is essential to the recovery and reuse of high-value propulsion and avionics hardware. The ALS approach involves landing of first stage (booster) and/or second stage (core) P/A modules near the launch site to minimize logistics and refurbishment cost. The key issue addressed herein is the aerodynamic design of the P/A module, including the stability characteristics and the lift-to-drag (L/D) performance required to achieve the necessary landing guidance accuracy. The reference P/A module configuration was found to be statically stable for the desired flight regime, to provide adequate L/D for targeting, and to have effective modulation of the L/D performance using a body flap. The hypersonic aerodynamic trends for nose corner radius, boattail angle and body flap deflections were consistent with pretest predictions. However, the levels for the L/D and axial force for hypersonic Mach numbers were overpredicted by impact theories.

  8. Electric propulsion, circa 2000

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hudson, W. R.; Finke, R. C.

    1980-01-01

    This paper discusses the future of electric propulsion, circa 2000. Starting with the first generation Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP) technology as the first step toward the next century's advanced propulsion systems, the current status and future trends of other systems such as the magnetoplasmadynamic accelerator, the mass driver, the laser propulsion system, and the rail gun are described.

  9. Advanced Earth-to-orbit propulsion technology program overview: Impact of civil space technology initiative

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stephenson, Frank W., Jr.

    1988-01-01

    The NASA Earth-to-Orbit (ETO) Propulsion Technology Program is dedicated to advancing rocket engine technologies for the development of fully reusable engine systems that will enable space transportation systems to achieve low cost, routine access to space. The program addresses technology advancements in the areas of engine life extension/prediction, performance enhancements, reduced ground operations costs, and in-flight fault tolerant engine operations. The primary objective is to acquire increased knowledge and understanding of rocket engine chemical and physical processes in order to evolve more realistic analytical simulations of engine internal environments, to derive more accurate predictions of steady and unsteady loads, and using improved structural analyses, to more accurately predict component life and performance, and finally to identify and verify more durable advanced design concepts. In addition, efforts were focused on engine diagnostic needs and advances that would allow integrated health monitoring systems to be developed for enhanced maintainability, automated servicing, inspection, and checkout, and ultimately, in-flight fault tolerant engine operations.

  10. A review of electric propulsion systems and mission applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vondra, R.; Nock, K.; Jones, R.

    1984-01-01

    The satisfaction of growing demands for access to space resources will require new developments related to advanced propulsion and power technologies. A key technology in this context is concerned with the utilization of electric propulsion. A brief review of the current state of development of electric propulsion systems on an international basis is provided, taking into account advances in the USSR, the U.S., Japan, West Germany, China and Brazil. The present investigation, however, is mainly concerned with the U.S. program. The three basic types of electric thrusters are considered along with the intrinsic differences between chemical and electric propulsion, the resistojet, the augmented hydrazine thruster, the arcjet, the ion auxiliary propulsion system flight test, the pulsed plasma thruster, magnetoplasmadynamic propulsion, a pulsed inductive thruster, and rail accelerators. Attention is also given to the applications of electric propulsion.

  11. Advances in Engine Test Capabilities at the NASA Glenn Research Center's Propulsion Systems Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pachlhofer, Peter M.; Panek, Joseph W.; Dicki, Dennis J.; Piendl, Barry R.; Lizanich, Paul J.; Klann, Gary A.

    2006-01-01

    The Propulsion Systems Laboratory at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Glenn Research Center is one of the premier U.S. facilities for research on advanced aeropropulsion systems. The facility can simulate a wide range of altitude and Mach number conditions while supplying the aeropropulsion system with all the support services necessary to operate at those conditions. Test data are recorded on a combination of steady-state and highspeed data-acquisition systems. Recently a number of upgrades were made to the facility to meet demanding new requirements for the latest aeropropulsion concepts and to improve operational efficiency. Improvements were made to data-acquisition systems, facility and engine-control systems, test-condition simulation systems, video capture and display capabilities, and personnel training procedures. This paper discusses the facility s capabilities, recent upgrades, and planned future improvements.

  12. Evidence of nonclassical plasma transport in hollow cathodes for electric propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Mikellides, Ioannis G.; Katz, Ira; Goebel, Dan M.; Jameson, Kristina K.

    2007-03-15

    Measurements, simplified analyses, and two-dimensional numerical simulations with a fluid plasma model show that classical resistivity cannot account for the elevated electron temperatures and steep plasma potential gradients measured in a 25-27.5 A electric propulsion hollow cathode. The cathode consisted of a 1.5 cm hollow tube with an {approx}0.28 cm diameter orifice and was operated with 5.5 SCCM (SCCM denotes cubic centimeter per minute at STP) of xenon flow using two different anode geometries: a segmented cone and a circular flat plate. The numerical simulations show that classical resistivity yields as much as four times colder electron temperatures compared to the measured values in the orifice and near-plume regions of the cathode. Classical transport and Ohm's law also predict exceedingly high electron-ion relative drift speeds compared to the electron thermal speed (>4). It is found that the addition of anomalous resistivity based on existing growth rate formulas for electron-ion streaming instabilities improves qualitatively the comparison between the numerical results and the time-averaged measurements. Simplified analyses that have been based largely on the axial measurements support the conclusion that additional resistivity is required in Ohm's law to explain the measurements. The combined results from the two-dimensional simulations and the analyses bound the range of enhanced resistivity to be 3-100 times the classical value.

  13. Development of a miniature microwave electron cyclotron resonance plasma ion thruster for exospheric micro-propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Dey, Indranuj; Toyoda, Yuji; Yamamoto, Naoji; Nakashima, Hideki

    2015-12-15

    A miniature microwave electron cyclotron resonance plasma source [(discharge diameter)/(microwave cutoff diameter) < 0.3] has been developed at Kyushu University to be used as an ion thruster in micro-propulsion applications in the exosphere. The discharge source uses both radial and axial magnetostatic field confinement to facilitate electron cyclotron resonance and increase the electron dwell time in the volume, thereby enhancing plasma production efficiency. Performance of the ion thruster is studied at 3 microwave frequencies (1.2 GHz, 1.6 GHz, and 2.45 GHz), for low input powers (<15 W) and small xenon mass flow rates (<40 μg/s), by experimentally measuring the extracted ion beam current through a potential difference of ≅1200 V. The discharge geometry is found to operate most efficiently at an input microwave frequency of 1.6 GHz. At this frequency, for an input power of 8 W, and propellant (xenon) mass flow rate of 21 μg/s, 13.7 mA of ion beam current is obtained, equivalent to an calculated thrust of 0.74 mN.

  14. Results of the qualification test campaign of a Pulsed Plasma Thruster for Cubesat Propulsion (PPTCUP)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ciaralli, S.; Coletti, M.; Gabriel, S. B.

    2016-04-01

    Pulsed Plasma Thruster for Cubesat Propulsion (PPTCUP) is an ablative pulsed plasma thruster designed with the aim of providing translational and orbital control to Cubesat platforms. The qualification model presented in this paper has been developed by Mars Space Ltd, Clyde Space Ltd and the University of Southampton to produce a versatile "stand-alone" module that can be bolted on the Cubesat structure, allowing the orbital control along the X or Y-axis of the satellite. An extensive and complete test campaign to qualify the unit for space flight, which includes electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) characterization, thermal cycling and mechanical tests, has been performed according to the NASA GEVS procedures. PPTCUP is characterized by an averaged specific impulse of 655±58 s and a deliverable total impulse of 48.2±4.2 Ns. Finally, it has been found that the unit is compliant with the EMC requirements and can successfully withstand the thermal and mechanical loads typical of a Cubesat space mission.

  15. Space Propulsion Technology Program Overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Escher, William J. D.

    1991-01-01

    The topics presented are covered in viewgraph form. Focused program elements are: (1) transportation systems, which include earth-to-orbit propulsion, commercial vehicle propulsion, auxiliary propulsion, advanced cryogenic engines, cryogenic fluid systems, nuclear thermal propulsion, and nuclear electric propulsion; (2) space platforms, which include spacecraft on-board propulsion, and station keeping propulsion; and (3) technology flight experiments, which include cryogenic orbital N2 experiment (CONE), SEPS flight experiment, and cryogenic orbital H2 experiment (COHE).

  16. Brayton Power Conversion System Study to Advance Technology Readiness for Nuclear Electric Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allen, Bog; Delventhal, Rex; Frye, Patrick

    2004-01-01

    Recently, there has been significant interest within the aerospace community to develop space based nuclear power conversion technologies especially for exploring the outer planets of our solar system where the solar energy density is very low. To investigate these technologies NASA awarded several contracts under Project Prometheus, the Nuclear Systems Program. The studies described in this paper were performed under one of those contracts, which was to investigate the use of a nuclear power conversion system based on the closed Brayton cycle (CBC).The investigation performed included BPCS (Brayton Power Conversion System) trade studies to minimize system weight and radiator area and advance the state of the art of BPCS technology. The primary requirements for studies were a power level of 100 kWe (to the PPU), a low overall power system mass and a lifetime of 15 years (10 years full power). For the radiation environment, the system was to be capable of operation in the generic space environment and withstand the extreme environments surrounding Jupiter. The studies defined a BPCS design traceable to NEP (Nuclear Electric Propulsion) requirements and suitable for future missions with a sound technology plan for technology readiness level (TRL) advancement identified. The studies assumed a turbine inlet temperature approx. 100 C above the current the state of the art capabilities with materials issues and related development tasks identified. Analyses and evaluations of six different HRS (heat rejection system) designs and three primary power management and distribution (PMAD) configurations will be discussed in the paper.

  17. Brayton Power Conversion System Study to Advance Technology Readiness for Nuclear Electric Propulsion - Phase I

    SciTech Connect

    Frye, Patrick E.; Allen, Robert; Delventhal, Rex

    2005-02-06

    To investigate and mature space based nuclear power conversion technologies NASA awarded several contracts under Prometheus, the Nuclear Systems Program. The studies described in this paper were performed under one of those contracts, which was to investigate the use of a nuclear power conversion system based on the closed Brayton cycle (CBC). The conceptual design effort performed included BPCS (Brayton power conversion system) trade studies to minimize system weight and radiator area and advance the state of the art of BPCS technology. The primary requirements for studies were a power level of 100 kWe (to the PPU), a low overall power system mass (with a target of less than 3000 kg), and a lifetime of 15 years (10 years full power). For the radiation environment, the system was to operate in the generic space environment and withstand the extreme environments within the Jovian system. The studies defined a BPCS design traceable to NBP (Nuclear Electric Propulsion) requirements and suitable for future potential missions with a sound technology plan for TRL (Technical Readiness Level) advancement identified. The studies assumed a turbine inlet temperature {approx} 100C above the current the state of the art capabilities with materials issues identified and an approach for resolution developed. Analyses and evaluations of six HRS (heat rejection subsystem) concepts and PMAD (Power Management and Distribution) architecture trades will be discussed in the paper.

  18. Fusion for Space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thio, Y. C. Francis; Schmidt, George R.; Santarius, John F.; Turchi, Peter J.; Siemon, Richard E.; Rodgers, Stephen L. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The need for fusion propulsion for interplanetary flights is discussed. For a propulsion system, there are three important system attributes: (1) The absolute amount of energy available, (2) the propellant exhaust velocity, and (3) the jet power per unit mass of the propulsion system (specific power). For efficient and affordable human exploration of the solar system, propellant exhaust velocity in excess of 100 km/s and specific power in excess of 10 kW/kg are required. Chemical combustion obviously cannot meet the requirement in propellant exhaust velocity. Nuclear fission processes typically result in producing energy in the form of heat that needs to be manipulated at temperatures limited by materials to about 2,800 K. Using the fission energy to heat a low atomic weight propellant produces propellant velocity of the order of 10 kinds. Alternatively the fission energy can be converted into electricity that is used to accelerate particles to high exhaust velocity. However, the necessary power conversion and conditioning equipment greatly increases the mass of the propulsion system. Fundamental considerations in waste heat rejection and power conditioning in a fission electric propulsion system place a limit on its jet specific power to the order of about 0.2 kW/kg. If fusion can be developed for propulsion, it appears to have the best of all worlds - it can provide the largest absolute amount of energy, the propellant exhaust velocity (> 100 km/s), and the high specific jet power (> 10 kW/kg). An intermediate step towards fusion propulsion might be a bimodal system in which a fission reactor is used to provide some of the energy to drive a fusion propulsion unit. There are similarities as well as differences between applying fusion to propulsion and to terrestrial electrical power generation. The similarities are the underlying plasma and fusion physics, the enabling component technologies, the computational and the diagnostics capabilities. These physics and

  19. Pulsed electromagnetic gas acceleration. [magnetohydrodynamics, plasma power sources and plasma propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jahn, R. G.; Vonjaskowsky, W. F.; Clark, K. E.

    1975-01-01

    Terminal voltage measurements with various cathodes and anodes in a high power, quasi-steady magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) are discussed. The magnitude of the current at the onset of voltage fluctuations is shown to be an increasing function of cathode area and a weaker decreasing function of anode area. Tests with a fluted cathode indicated that the fluctuations originate in the plasma adjacent to the cathode rather than at the cathode surface. Measurements of radiative output from an optical cavity aligned to examine the current-carrying portion of a two-dimensional, 56 kA magnetoplasmadynamic discharge reveal no lasing in that region, consistent with calculations of electron excitation and resonance radiation trapping. A voltage-swept double probe technique allows single-shot determination of electron temperature and electron number density in the recombining MPD exhaust flow. Current distributions within the cavity of MPD hollow cathodes for various static prefills with no injected mass flow are examined.

  20. Mini-cavity plasma core reactors for dual-mode space nuclear power/propulsion systems. M.S. Thesis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chow, S.

    1976-01-01

    A mini-cavity plasma core reactor is investigated for potential use in a dual-mode space power and propulsion system. In the propulsive mode, hydrogen propellant is injected radially inward through the reactor solid regions and into the cavity. The propellant is heated by both solid driver fuel elements surrounding the cavity and uranium plasma before it is exhausted out the nozzle. The propellant only removes a fraction of the driver power, the remainder is transferred by a coolant fluid to a power conversion system, which incorporates a radiator for heat rejection. Neutronic feasibility of dual mode operation and smaller reactor sizes than those previously investigated are shown to be possible. A heat transfer analysis of one such reactor shows that the dual-mode concept is applicable when power generation mode thermal power levels are within the same order of magnitude as direct thrust mode thermal power levels.

  1. A Review of Past Insights by Robert Forward and Current Advanced Propulsion Activities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robertson, Tony; Norley, G. D.

    2003-01-01

    A review of various technologies discussed by Dr. Robert Forward is done as a tribute to Dr. Forward, and is based on selections from his writings. These speculations and predictions by Dr. Forward are used as a basis for discussing expected propulsion technology work over the next twenty years. Among the technologies to be discussed are antimatter propulsion, space elevators and tethers, and laser propulsion.

  2. Propulsive performance of a finite-temperature plasma flow in a magnetic nozzle with applied azimuthal current

    SciTech Connect

    Ferrario, Lorenzo; Little, Justin M. Choueiri, Edgar Y.

    2014-11-15

    The plasma flow in a finite-electron-temperature magnetic nozzle, under the influence of an applied azimuthal current at the throat, is modeled analytically to assess its propulsive performance. A correction to the nozzle throat boundary conditions is derived by modifying the radial equilibrium of a magnetized infinite two-population cylindrical plasma column with the insertion of an external azimuthal body force for the electrons. Inclusion of finite-temperature effects, which leads to a modification of the radial density profile, is necessary for calculating the propulsive performance, which is represented by nozzle divergence efficiency and thrust coefficient. The solutions show that the application of the azimuthal current enhances all the calculated performance parameters through the narrowing of the radial density profile at the throat, and that investing power in this beam focusing effect is more effective than using the same power to pre-heat the electrons. The results open the possibility for the design of a focusing stage between the plasma source and the nozzle that can significantly enhance the propulsive performance of electron-driven magnetic nozzles.

  3. Plasma-Surface Interactions in Hollow Cathode Discharges for Electric Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capece, Angela Maria

    Electric thrusters generate high exhaust velocities and can achieve specific impulses in excess of 1000 s. The low thrust generation and high specific impulse make electric propulsion ideal for interplanetary missions, spacecraft station keeping, and orbit raising maneuvers. Consequently, these devices have been used on a variety of space missions including Deep Space 1, Dawn, and hundreds of commercial spacecraft in Earth orbit. In order to provide the required total impulses, thruster burn time can often exceed 10,000 hours, making thruster lifetime essential. One of the main life-limiting components on ion engines is the hollow cathode, which serves as the electron source for ionization of the xenon propellant gas. Reactive contaminants such as oxygen can modify the cathode surface morphology and degrade the electron emission properties. Hollow cathodes that operate with reactive impurities in the propellant will experience higher operating temperatures, which increase evaporation of the emission materials and reduce cathode life. A deeper understanding of the mechanisms initiating cathode failure will improve thruster operation, increase lifetime, and ultimately reduce cost. A significant amount of work has been done previously to understand the effects of oxygen poisoning on vacuum cathodes; however, the xenon plasma adds complexity, and its role during cathode poisoning is not completely understood. The work presented here represents the first attempt at understanding how oxygen impurities in the xenon discharge plasma alter the emitter surface and affect operation of a 4:1:1 BaO-CaO-Al2O3 hollow cathode. A combination of experimentation and modeling was used to investigate how oxygen impurities in the discharge plasma alter the emitter surface and reduce the electron emission capability. The experimental effort involved operating a 4:1:1 hollow cathode at various conditions with oxygen impurities in the xenon flow. Since direct measurements of the emitter

  4. Advances in SiC/SiC Composites for Aero-Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DiCarlo, James A.

    2013-01-01

    In the last decade, considerable progress has been made in the development and application of ceramic matrix composites consisting of silicon carbide (SiC) based matrices reinforced by small-diameter continuous-length SiC-based fibers. For example, these SiC/SiC composites are now in the early stages of implementation into hot-section components of civil aero-propulsion gas turbine engines, where in comparison to current metallic components they offer multiple advantages due to their lighter weight and higher temperature structural capability. For current production-ready SiC/SiC, this temperature capability for long time structural applications is 1250 degC, which is better than 1100 degC for the best metallic superalloys. Foreseeing that even higher structural reliability and temperature capability would continue to increase the advantages of SiC/SiC composites, progress in recent years has also been made at NASA toward improving the properties of SiC/SiC composites by optimizing the various constituent materials and geometries within composite microstructures. The primary objective of this chapter is to detail this latter progress, both fundamentally and practically, with particular emphasis on recent advancements in the materials and processes for the fiber, fiber coating, fiber architecture, and matrix, and in the design methods for incorporating these constituents into SiC/SiC microstructures with improved thermo-structural performance.

  5. Development of Thin Film Thermocouples on Ceramic Materials for Advanced Propulsion System Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holanda, R.

    1992-01-01

    Thin film thermocouples have been developed for use on metal parts in jet engines to 1000 c. However, advanced propulsion systems are being developed that will use ceramic materials and reach higher temperatures. The purpose of this work is to develop thin film thermocouples for use on ceramic materials. The new thin film thermocouples are Pt13Rh/Pt fabricated by the sputtering process. Lead wires are attached using the parallel-gap welding process. The ceramic materials tested are silicon nitride, silicon carbide, aluminum oxide, and mullite. Both steady state and thermal cycling furnace tests were performed in the temperature range to 1500 C. High-heating-rate tests were performed in an arc lamp heat-flux-calibration facility. The fabrication of the thin film thermocouples is described. The thin film thermocouple output was compared to a reference wire thermocouple. Drift of the thin film thermocouples was determined, and causes of drift are discussed. The results of high heating rate tests up to 2500 C/sec are presented. The stability of the ceramic materials is examined. It is concluded that Pt13Rh/Pt thin film thermocouples are capable of meeting lifetime goals of 50 hours or more up to temperature of 1500 C depending on the stability of the particular ceramic substrate.

  6. Development of thin film thermocouples on ceramic materials for advanced propulsion system applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holanda, Raymond

    1993-01-01

    Thin film thermocouples were developed for use on metal parts in jet engines to 1000 C. However, advanced propulsion systems are being developed that will use ceramic materials and reach higher temperatures. The purpose is to develop thin film thermocouples for use on ceramic materials. The new thin film thermocouples are Pt13Rh/Pt fabricated by the sputtering process. Lead wires are attached using the parallel-gap welding process. The ceramic materials tested are silicon nitride, silicon carbide, aluminum oxide, and mullite. Both steady state and thermal cycling furnace tests were performed in the temperature range to 1500 C. High-heating-rate tests were performed in an arc lamp heat-flux-calibration facility. The fabrication of the thin film thermocouples is described. The thin film thermocouple output was compared to a reference wire thermocouple. Drift of the thin film thermocouples was determined, and causes of drift are discussed. The results of high heating rate tests up to 2500 C/sec are presented. The stability of the ceramic materials is examined. It is concluded that Pt13Rh/Pt thin film thermocouples are capable of meeting lifetime goals of 50 hr or more up to temperatures of 1500 C depending on the stability of the particular ceramic substrate.

  7. Working group report on beam plasmas, electronic propulsion, and active experiments using beams

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dawson, J. M.; Eastman, T.; Gabriel, S.; Hawkins, J.; Matossian, J.; Raitt, J.; Reeves, G.; Sasaki, S.; Szuszczewicz, E.; Winkler, J. R.

    1986-01-01

    The JPL Workshop addressed a number of plasma issues that bear on advanced spaceborne technology for the years 2000 and beyond. Primary interest was on the permanently manned space station with a focus on identifying environmentally related issues requiring early clarification by spaceborne plasma experimentation. The Beams Working Group focused on environmentally related threats that platform operations could have on the conduct and integrity of spaceborne beam experiments and vice versa. Considerations were to include particle beams and plumes. For purposes of definition it was agreed that the term particle beams described a directed flow of charged or neutral particles allowing single-particle trajectories to represent the characteristics of the beam and its propagation. On the other hand, the word plume was adopted to describe a multidimensional flow (or expansion) of a plasma or neutral gas cloud. Within the framework of these definitions, experiment categories included: (1) Neutral- and charged-particle beam propagation, with considerations extending to high powers and currents. (2) Evolution and dynamics of naturally occurring and man-made plasma and neutral gas clouds. In both categories, scientific interest focused on interactions with the ambient geoplasma and the evolution of particle densities, energy distribution functions, waves, and fields.

  8. Cold plasma processing technology makes advances

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cold plasma (AKA nonthermal plasma, cool plasma, gas plasma, etc.) is a rapidly maturing antimicrobial process being developed for applications in the food industry. A wide array of devices can be used to create cold plasma, but the defining characteristic is that they operate at or near room temper...

  9. An advanced arrangement of the combined propulsion, levitation and guidance system of superconducting Maglev

    SciTech Connect

    Fujie, Junji

    1999-09-01

    The PLG (combined Propulsion, Levitation and Guidance) method was proposed for a more favorable Maglev ground coil system, combining the functions of propulsion, levitation, and guidance of the vehicle into one coil. Research and development is currently being conducted on this method. In this paper, the characteristics of a newly-structured system for the PLG method is examined. The discussed characteristics include propulsion, levitation-guidance, vehicle dynamics in the cases of problems with the superconducting magnets, and the magnetic field on board the vehicle.

  10. Advanced Aero-Propulsive Mid-Lift-to-Drag Ratio Entry Vehicle for Future Exploration Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Campbell, C. H.; Stosaric, R. R; Cerimele, C. J.; Wong, K. A.; Valle, G. D.; Garcia, J. A.; Melton, J. E.; Munk, M. M.; Blades, E.; Kuruvila, G.; Picetti, D. J.; Hassan, B.; Kniskern, M. W.

    2012-01-01

    vehicle stage return, thus making ideas reality. These paradigm shifts include the technology maturation of advanced flexible thermal protection materials onto mid lift-to-drag ratio entry vehicles, the development of integrated supersonic aero-propulsive maneuvering, and the implementation of advanced asymmetric launch shrouds. These paradigms have significant overlap with launch vehicle stage return already being developed by the Air Force and several commercial space efforts. Completing the realization of these combined paradigms holds the key to a high-performing entry vehicle system capability that fully leverages multiple technology benefits to accomplish NASA's Exploration missions to atmospheric planetary destinations.

  11. Measurements of energy distribution and thrust for microwave plasma coupling of electrical energy to hydrogen for propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morin, T.; Chapman, R.; Filpus, J.; Hawley, M.; Kerber, R.; Asmussen, J.; Nakanishi, S.

    1982-01-01

    A microwave plasma system for transfer of electrical energy to hydrogen flowing through the system has potential application for coupling energy to a flowing gas in the electrothermal propulsion concept. Experimental systems have been designed and built for determination of the energy inputs and outputs and thrust for the microwave coupling of energy to hydrogen. Results for experiments with pressure in the range 100 microns-6 torr, hydrogen flow rate up to 1000 micronmoles/s, and total absorbed power to 700 w are presented.

  12. A Review of Laser Ablation Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Phipps, Claude; Bohn, Willy; Lippert, Thomas; Sasoh, Akihiro; Schall, Wolfgang; Sinko, John

    2010-10-08

    Laser Ablation Propulsion is a broad field with a wide range of applications. We review the 30-year history of laser ablation propulsion from the transition from earlier pure photon propulsion concepts of Oberth and Saenger through Kantrowitz's original laser ablation propulsion idea to the development of air-breathing 'Lightcraft' and advanced spacecraft propulsion engines. The polymers POM and GAP have played an important role in experiments and liquid ablation fuels show great promise. Some applications use a laser system which is distant from the propelled object, for example, on another spacecraft, the Earth or a planet. Others use a laser that is part of the spacecraft propulsion system on the spacecraft. Propulsion is produced when an intense laser beam strikes a condensed matter surface and produces a vapor or plasma jet. The advantages of this idea are that exhaust velocity of the propulsion engine covers a broader range than is available from chemistry, that it can be varied to meet the instantaneous demands of the particular mission, and that practical realizations give lower mass and greater simplicity for a payload delivery system. We review the underlying theory, buttressed by extensive experimental data. The primary problem in laser space propulsion theory has been the absence of a way to predict thrust and specific impulse over the transition from the vapor to the plasma regimes. We briefly discuss a method for combining two new vapor regime treatments with plasma regime theory, giving a smooth transition from one regime to the other. We conclude with a section on future directions.

  13. A Review of Laser Ablation Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phipps, Claude; Bohn, Willy; Lippert, Thomas; Sasoh, Akihiro; Schall, Wolfgang; Sinko, John

    2010-10-01

    Laser Ablation Propulsion is a broad field with a wide range of applications. We review the 30-year history of laser ablation propulsion from the transition from earlier pure photon propulsion concepts of Oberth and Sänger through Kantrowitz's original laser ablation propulsion idea to the development of air-breathing "Lightcraft" and advanced spacecraft propulsion engines. The polymers POM and GAP have played an important rôle in experiments and liquid ablation fuels show great promise. Some applications use a laser system which is distant from the propelled object, for example, on another spacecraft, the Earth or a planet. Others use a laser that is part of the spacecraft propulsion system on the spacecraft. Propulsion is produced when an intense laser beam strikes a condensed matter surface and produces a vapor or plasma jet. The advantages of this idea are that exhaust velocity of the propulsion engine covers a broader range than is available from chemistry, that it can be varied to meet the instantaneous demands of the particular mission, and that practical realizations give lower mass and greater simplicity for a payload delivery system. We review the underlying theory, buttressed by extensive experimental data. The primary problem in laser space propulsion theory has been the absence of a way to predict thrust and specific impulse over the transition from the vapor to the plasma regimes. We briefly discuss a method for combining two new vapor regime treatments with plasma regime theory, giving a smooth transition from one regime to the other. We conclude with a section on future directions.

  14. Specialized data analysis for the Space Shuttle Main Engine and diagnostic evaluation of advanced propulsion system components

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    The Marshall Space Flight Center is responsible for the development and management of advanced launch vehicle propulsion systems, including the Space Shuttle Main Engine (SSME), which is presently operational, and the Space Transportation Main Engine (STME) under development. The SSME's provide high performance within stringent constraints on size, weight, and reliability. Based on operational experience, continuous design improvement is in progress to enhance system durability and reliability. Specialized data analysis and interpretation is required in support of SSME and advanced propulsion system diagnostic evaluations. Comprehensive evaluation of the dynamic measurements obtained from test and flight operations is necessary to provide timely assessment of the vibrational characteristics indicating the operational status of turbomachinery and other critical engine components. Efficient performance of this effort is critical due to the significant impact of dynamic evaluation results on ground test and launch schedules, and requires direct familiarity with SSME and derivative systems, test data acquisition, and diagnostic software. Detailed analysis and evaluation of dynamic measurements obtained during SSME and advanced system ground test and flight operations was performed including analytical/statistical assessment of component dynamic behavior, and the development and implementation of analytical/statistical models to efficiently define nominal component dynamic characteristics, detect anomalous behavior, and assess machinery operational condition. In addition, the SSME and J-2 data will be applied to develop vibroacoustic environments for advanced propulsion system components, as required. This study will provide timely assessment of engine component operational status, identify probable causes of malfunction, and indicate feasible engineering solutions. This contract will be performed through accomplishment of negotiated task orders.

  15. An Investigation of Bremsstrahlung Reflection in a Dense Plasma Focus (DPF) Propulsion Device

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, Robert; Miley, G. H.; Mead, Franklin

    2006-01-20

    The dense plasma focus device is one of the few fusion systems that is capable of burning advanced fuels such as D - 3He and p - 11B. An study has been performed and shown that three main requirements must be satisfied to reach breakeven for DPF fusion: a high Ti/Te ration ({approx} 20), an order of magnitude higher pinch lifetime, and the reflection and absorption if at least 50% Bremsstrahlung radiation. The latter issue is the focus of this report, and a literature search has been performed on laser-driven fusion radiation cavities, multilayer reflectors, and their application to Bremsstrahlung radiation reflection is presented. Additionally, the results found are compared to those assumed in the earlier DPF study bring p-11B.

  16. Advanced Supersonic Technology Study: Engine Program Summary. Supersonic Propulsion: 1971 to 1976

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krebs, J. N.

    1976-01-01

    Sustained supersonic cruise propulsion systems for military applications are studied. The J79-5 in the Mach 2 B-58; YJ93 in the Mach 3.0 B-70 and the current F101 in the B-1, are all examples of military propulsion systems and airplanes operated at sustained supersonic cruise speeds. The Mach 2.7 B2707 transport powered by GE4 turbojet engines was the only non-military, sustained supersonic cruise vehicle intended for commercial passenger service.

  17. Simulation Based on Ion-Ion Plasma Techniques of Electric propulsion In Mars Mission Using Chlorine Gas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sathiyavel, C.

    Abstract:The recently(Nov-5/2013) launched Mangalyan by the Indian space Research Organization (ISRO) to Mars orbit with Mankalyan contained by small liquid engine(MMH+N2O4).This will take long time to reach the Mars orbit that is around the 9 Months. Bi-Propellant rocket system has good thrust but low specific impulse and velocity. In future we need a rocket with good high specific impulse and high velocity of rocket system, to reduce the trip time to Mars. Electric propulsion rocket system is expected to become popular with the development of ion-ion pair techniques because this needs low propellant, Design thrust range is 1.5 N with high efficiency. An ion - ion pair of Electric propulsion rocket system is proposed in this work. Ion-Ion(positive ion- negative ion) Based Rocket system consists of three parts 1.The negative ionization stage with electro negative propellant 2. Ion-Ion plasma formation and ion accelerator 3. Exhaust of Nozzle. The Negative ions from electro negative gas are produced by adding up the gas, such as chlorine with electron emitted from an Electron gun ionization chamber. The formulate of large stable negative ion is achievable in chlorine gas with respect to electron affinity (∆E). When a neutral chlorine atom in the gaseous form picks up an electron to form a Cl- ion, it releases energy of 3.6eV. The negative ion density becomes several orders of magnitude larger than that of the electrons, hence forming ion-ion (positive ion - negative ion) plasma at the periphery of the discharge. The distance between ion- ions is important for the evaluate the rocket thrust and it also that the distance is determined by the exhaust velocity of the propellant. Accelerate the ion-ion plasma to a high velocity in the thrust vector direction via electron gun and the exhaust of ions through Nozzle. The simulation of the ion propulsion system has been carried out by MATLAB. By comparing the simulation results with the theoretical and previous results, we

  18. Beamed energy propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shoji, James M.

    1992-01-01

    Beamed energy concepts offer an alternative for an advanced propulsion system. The use of a remote power source reduces the weight of the propulsion system in flight and this, combined with the high performance, provides significant payload gains. Within the context of this study's baseline scenario, two beamed energy propulsion concepts are potentially attractive: solar thermal propulsion and laser thermal propulsion. The conceived beamed energy propulsion devices generally provide low thrust (tens of pounds to hundreds of pounds); therefore, they are typically suggested for cargo transportation. For the baseline scenario, these propulsion system can provide propulsion between the following nodes: (1) low Earth orbit to geosynchronous Earth orbit; (2) low Earth orbit to low lunar orbit; (3) low lunar orbit to low Mars orbit--only solar thermal; and (4) lunar surface to low lunar orbit--only laser thermal.

  19. Note: An advanced in situ diagnostic system for characterization of electric propulsion thrusters and ion beam sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bundesmann, C.; Tartz, M.; Scholze, F.; Leiter, H. J.; Scortecci, F.; Gnizdor, R. Y.; Neumann, H.

    2010-04-01

    We present an advanced diagnostic system for in situ characterization of electric propulsion thrusters and ion beam sources. The system uses a high-precision five-axis positioning system with a modular setup and the following diagnostic tools: a telemicroscopy head for optical imaging, a triangular laser head for surface profile scanning, a pyrometer for temperature scanning, a Faraday probe for current density mapping, and an energy-selective mass spectrometer for beam characterization (energy and mass distribution, composition). The capabilities of our diagnostic system are demonstrated with a Hall effect thruster SPT-100D EM1.

  20. Note: An advanced in situ diagnostic system for characterization of electric propulsion thrusters and ion beam sources.

    PubMed

    Bundesmann, C; Tartz, M; Scholze, F; Leiter, H J; Scortecci, F; Gnizdor, R Y; Neumann, H

    2010-04-01

    We present an advanced diagnostic system for in situ characterization of electric propulsion thrusters and ion beam sources. The system uses a high-precision five-axis positioning system with a modular setup and the following diagnostic tools: a telemicroscopy head for optical imaging, a triangular laser head for surface profile scanning, a pyrometer for temperature scanning, a Faraday probe for current density mapping, and an energy-selective mass spectrometer for beam characterization (energy and mass distribution, composition). The capabilities of our diagnostic system are demonstrated with a Hall effect thruster SPT-100D EM1. PMID:20441379

  1. Development of sensors for ceramic components in advanced propulsion systems: Survey and evaluation of measurement techniques for temperature, strain and heat flux for ceramic components in advanced propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Atkinson, W. H.; Cyr, M. A.; Strange, R. R.

    1988-01-01

    The report presents the final results of Tasks 1 and 2, Development of Sensors for Ceramic Components in Advanced Propulsion Systems (NASA program NAS3-25141). During Task 1, an extensive survey was conducted of sensor concepts which have the potential for measuring surface temperature, strain and heat flux on ceramic components for advanced propulsion systems. Each sensor concept was analyzed and evaluated under Task 2; sensor concepts were then recommended for further development. For temperature measurement, both pyrometry and thermographic phosphors are recommended for measurements up to and beyond the melting point of ceramic materials. For lower temperature test programs, the thin-film techniques offer advantages in the installation of temperature sensors. Optical strain measurement techniques are recommended because they offer the possibility of being useful at very high temperature levels. Techniques for the measurement of heat flux are recommended for development based on both a surface mounted sensor and the measurement of the temperature differential across a portion of a ceramic component or metallic substrate.

  2. Theoretical Investigations of Plasma-Based Accelerators and Other Advanced Accelerator Concepts

    SciTech Connect

    Shuets, G.

    2004-05-21

    Theoretical investigations of plasma-based accelerators and other advanced accelerator concepts. The focus of the work was on the development of plasma based and structure based accelerating concepts, including laser-plasma, plasma channel, and microwave driven plasma accelerators.

  3. Experimental validation of the dual positive and negative ion beam acceleration in the plasma propulsion with electronegative gases thruster

    SciTech Connect

    Rafalskyi, Dmytro Popelier, Lara; Aanesland, Ane

    2014-02-07

    The PEGASES (Plasma Propulsion with Electronegative Gases) thruster is a gridded ion thruster, where both positive and negative ions are accelerated to generate thrust. In this way, additional downstream neutralization by electrons is redundant. To achieve this, the thruster accelerates alternately positive and negative ions from an ion-ion plasma where the electron density is three orders of magnitude lower than the ion densities. This paper presents a first experimental study of the alternate acceleration in PEGASES, where SF{sub 6} is used as the working gas. Various electrostatic probes are used to investigate the source plasma potential and the energy, composition, and current of the extracted beams. We show here that the plasma potential control in such system is key parameter defining success of ion extraction and is sensitive to both parasitic electron current paths in the source region and deposition of sulphur containing dielectric films on the grids. In addition, large oscillations in the ion-ion plasma potential are found in the negative ion extraction phase. The oscillation occurs when the primary plasma approaches the grounded parts of the main core via sub-millimetres technological inputs. By controlling and suppressing the various undesired effects, we achieve perfect ion-ion plasma potential control with stable oscillation-free operation in the range of the available acceleration voltages (±350 V). The measured positive and negative ion currents in the beam are about 10 mA for each component at RF power of 100 W and non-optimized extraction system. Two different energy analyzers with and without magnetic electron suppression system are used to measure and compare the negative and positive ion and electron fluxes formed by the thruster. It is found that at alternate ion-ion extraction the positive and negative ion energy peaks are similar in areas and symmetrical in position with +/− ion energy corresponding to the amplitude of the applied

  4. Advancement of a 30K W Solar Electric Propulsion System Capability for NASA Human and Robotic Exploration Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Bryan K.; Nazario, Margaret L.; Manzella, David H.

    2012-01-01

    Solar Electric Propulsion has evolved into a demonstrated operational capability performing station keeping for geosynchronous satellites, enabling challenging deep-space science missions, and assisting in the transfer of satellites from an elliptical orbit Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO) to a Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO). Advancing higher power SEP systems will enable numerous future applications for human, robotic, and commercial missions. These missions are enabled by either the increased performance of the SEP system or by the cost reductions when compared to conventional chemical propulsion systems. Higher power SEP systems that provide very high payload for robotic missions also trade favorably for the advancement of human exploration beyond low Earth orbit. Demonstrated reliable systems are required for human space flight and due to their successful present day widespread use and inherent high reliability, SEP systems have progressively become a viable entrant into these future human exploration architectures. NASA studies have identified a 30 kW-class SEP capability as the next appropriate evolutionary step, applicable to wide range of both human and robotic missions. This paper describes the planning options, mission applications, and technology investments for representative 30kW-class SEP mission concepts under consideration by NASA

  5. Use of advanced particle methods in modeling space propulsion and its supersonic expansions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borner, Arnaud

    This research discusses the use of advanced kinetic particle methods such as Molecular Dynamics (MD) and direct simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) to model space propulsion systems such as electrospray thrusters and their supersonic expansions. MD simulations are performed to model an electrospray thruster for the ionic liquid (IL) EMIM--BF4 using coarse-grained (CG) potentials. The model is initially featuring a constant electric field applied in the longitudinal direction. Two coarse-grained potentials are compared, and the effective-force CG (EFCG) potential is found to predict the formation of the Taylor cone, the cone-jet, and other extrusion modes for similar electric fields and mass flow rates observed in experiments of a IL fed capillary-tip-extractor system better than the simple CG potential. Later, one-dimensional and fully transient three-dimensional electric fields, the latter solving Poisson's equation to take into account the electric field due to space charge at each timestep, are computed by coupling the MD model to a Poisson solver. It is found that the inhomogeneous electric field as well as that of the IL space-charge improve agreement between modeling and experiment. The boundary conditions (BCs) are found to have a substantial impact on the potential and electric field, and the tip BC is introduced and compared to the two previous BCs, named plate and needle, showing good improvement by reducing unrealistically high radial electric fields generated in the vicinity of the capillary tip. The influence of the different boundary condition models on charged species currents as a function of the mass flow rate is studied, and it is found that a constant electric field model gives similar agreement to the more rigorous and computationally expensive tip boundary condition at lower flow rates. However, at higher mass flow rates the MD simulations with the constant electric field produces extruded particles with higher Coulomb energy per ion, consistent with

  6. Self-propulsion of flapping bodies in viscous fluids: Recent advances and perspectives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Shizhao; He, Guowei; Zhang, Xing

    2016-08-01

    Flapping-powered propulsion is used by many animals to locomote through air or water. Here we review recent experimental and numerical studies on self-propelled mechanical systems powered by a flapping motion. These studies improve our understanding of the mutual interaction between actively flapping bodies and surrounding fluids. The results obtained in these works provide not only new insights into biolocomotion but also useful information for the biomimetic design of artificial flyers and swimmers.

  7. Advances in induction-heated plasma torch technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Poole, J. W.; Vogel, C. E.

    1972-01-01

    Continuing research has resulted in significant advances in induction-heated plasma torch technology which extend and enhance its potential for broad range of uses in chemical processing, materials development and testing, and development of large illumination sources. Summaries of these advances are briefly described.

  8. Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Borowski, S. K.; George, J. A.; Kim, T.; Emrich, W. J.; Hickman, R. R.; Broadway, J. W.; Gerrish, H. P.; Adams, R. B.

    2012-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) based on NTP could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of the NCPS in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progress made under the NCPS project could help enable both advanced NTP and advanced NEP.

  9. Preface to advances in numerical simulation of plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parker, Scott E.; Chacon, Luis

    2016-10-01

    This Journal of Computational Physics Special Issue, titled "Advances in Numerical Simulation of Plasmas," presents a snapshot of the international state of the art in the field of computational plasma physics. The articles herein are a subset of the topics presented as invited talks at the 24th International Conference on the Numerical Simulation of Plasmas (ICNSP), August 12-14, 2015 in Golden, Colorado. The choice of papers was highly selective. The ICNSP is held every other year and is the premier scientific meeting in the field of computational plasma physics.

  10. Advanced ceramic matrix composite materials for current and future propulsion technology applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidt, S.; Beyer, S.; Knabe, H.; Immich, H.; Meistring, R.; Gessler, A.

    2004-08-01

    Current rocket engines, due to their method of construction, the materials used and the extreme loads to which they are subjected, feature a limited number of load cycles. Various technology programmes in Europe are concerned, besides developing reliable and rugged, low cost, throwaway equipment, with preparing for future reusable propulsion technologies. One of the key roles for realizing reusable engine components is the use of modern and innovative materials. One of the key technologies which concern various engine manufacturers worldwide is the development of fibre-reinforced ceramics—ceramic matrix composites. The advantages for the developers are obvious—the low specific weight, the high specific strength over a large temperature range, and their great damage tolerance compared to monolithic ceramics make this material class extremely interesting as a construction material. Over the past years, the Astrium company (formerly DASA) has, together with various partners, worked intensively on developing components for hypersonic engines and liquid rocket propulsion systems. In the year 2000, various hot-firing tests with subscale (scale 1:5) and full-scale nozzle extensions were conducted. In this year, a further decisive milestone was achieved in the sector of small thrusters, and long-term tests served to demonstrate the extraordinary stability of the C/SiC material. Besides developing and testing radiation-cooled nozzle components and small-thruster combustion chambers, Astrium worked on the preliminary development of actively cooled structures for future reusable propulsion systems. In order to get one step nearer to this objective, the development of a new fibre composite was commenced within the framework of a regionally sponsored programme. The objective here is to create multidirectional (3D) textile structures combined with a cost-effective infiltration process. Besides material and process development, the project also encompasses the development of

  11. Advances in series resonant inverter technology and its effect on spacecraft employing electric propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robson, R. R.

    1982-01-01

    The efficiency of transistorized Series Resonant Inverters (SRIs), which is higher than that of silicon-controlled rectifier alternatives, reduces spacecraft radiator requirements by 40% and may eliminate the need for heat pipes on 30-cm ion thruster systems. Recently developed 10- and 25-kW inverters have potential applications in gas thrusters, and represent the first spaceborne SRI designs for such power levels. Attention is given to the design and control system approaches employed in these inverter designs to improve efficiency and reduce weight, along with the impact of such improved parameters on electric propulsion systems.

  12. Advanced manufacturing technologies on color plasma displays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Betsui, Keiichi

    2000-06-01

    The mass production of the color plasma display started from 1996. However, since the price of the panel is still expensive, PDPs are not in widespread use at home. It is necessary to develop the new and low-cost manufacturing technologies to reduce the price of the panel. This paper describes some of the features of new fabrication technologies of PDPs.

  13. Recent Advances in LOX / LH2 Propulsion System for Reusable Vehicle Testing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tokudome, Shinichiro; Naruo, Yoshihiro; Yagishita, Tsuyoshi; Nonaka, Satoshi; Shida, Maki; Mori, Hatsuo; Nakamura, Takeshi

    The third-generation vehicle RVT#3 equipped with a pressure-fed engine, which had upgraded in terms of durability enhancement and a LH2 tank of composite material, successfully performed in repeated flight operation tests; and the vehicle reached its maximum flying altitude of 42m in October 2003. The next step for demonstrating entire sequence of full-scale operation is to put a turbopump-fed system into propulsion system. From a result of primary system analysis, we decided to build an expander-cycle engine by diverting a pair of turbopumps, which had built for another research program, to the present study. A combustion chamber with long cylindrical portion adapted to the engine cycle was also newly made. Two captive firing tests have been conducted with two different thrust control methods, following the component tests of combustor and turbopumps separately conducted. A considerable technical issues recognized in the tests were the robustness enhancement of shaft seal design, the adjustment of shaft stiffness, and start-up operation adapted to the specific engine system. Experimental study of GOX/GH2 RCS thrusters have also been started as a part of a conceptual study of the integration of the propulsion system associated with simplification and reliability improvement of the vehicle system.

  14. Shape Optimization for DIII-D Advanced Tokamak Plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    C.E. Kesse; J.R. Ferron; C.M. Greenfield; J.E. Menard; T.S. Taylor

    2003-07-30

    The advanced tokamak program on DIII-D is targeting the full integration of high-beta and high-bootstrap/noninductive current fraction for long-pulse lengths and the high confinement consistent with these features. Central to achieving these simultaneously is access to the highest ideal beta limits possible to maximize the headroom for experimental operation with RWM control. A study of the ideal-MHD stability is done for plasmas modeled after DIII-D advanced tokamak plasmas, varying the plasma elongation, triangularity, and outboard squareness. The highest beta(sub)N limits reach 6-7 for the n=1 kink mode for all elongation, outer squareness values, and plasma triangularity equals 0.8.

  15. Micro electric propulsion feasibility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Aston, Graeme; Aston, Martha

    1992-01-01

    Miniature, 50 kg class, strategic satellites intended for extended deployment in space require an on-board propulsion capability to perform needed attitude control adjustments and drag compensation maneuvers. Even on such very small spacecraft, these orbit maintenance functions can be significant and result in a substantial propellant mass requirement. Development of advanced propulsion technology could reduce this propellant mass significantly, and thereby maximize the payload capability of these spacecraft. In addition, spacecraft maneuverability could be enhanced and/or multi-year mission lifetimes realized. These benefits cut spacecraft replacement costs, and reduce services needed to maintain the launch vehicles. For SDIO brilliant pebble spacecraft, a miniaturized hydrazine propulsion system provides both boost and divert thrust control. This type of propulsion system is highly integrated and is capable of delivering large thrust levels for short time periods. However, orbit maintenance functions such as drag make-up require only very small velocity corrections. Using the boost and/or divert thrusters for these small corrections exposes this highly integrated propulsion system to continuous on/off cycling and thereby increases the risk of system failure. Furthermore, since drag compensation velocity corrections would be orders of magnitude less than these thrusters were designed to deliver, their effective specific impulse would be expected to be lower when operated at very short pulse lengths. The net result of these effects would be a significant depletion of the on-board hydrazine propellant supply throughout the mission, and a reduced propulsion system reliability, both of which would degrade the interceptors usefulness. In addition to SDIO brilliant pebble spacecraft, comparably small spacecraft can be anticipated for other future strategic defense applications such as surveillance and communication. For such spacecraft, high capability and reliability

  16. Fusion for Space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thio, Y. C. Francis; Schafer, Charles (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    somewhat different from those for terrestrial electrical power generation. Thus fusion schemes that are initially attractive for electrical power generation might not necessarily be attractive also for propulsion and vice versa, though the underlying fusion science and engineering enjoy much overlap. Parallel efforts to develop these qualitatively differently fusion schemes for the two applications could benefit greatly from each other due to the synergy in the underlying physics and engineering. Pulsed approaches to fusion have not been explored to the same degree as steady-state or long-pulse approaches to fusion in the fusion power research program. The concerns early on were several. One was that the pulsed power components might not have the service lifetimes meeting the requirements of a practical power generating plant. Another was that, for many pulsed fusion schemes, it was not clear whether the destruction of hardware per pulse could be minimized or eliminated or recycled to such an extent as to make economical electrical power generation feasible, Significant development of the underlying pulsed power component technologies have occurred in the last two decades because of defense and other energy requirements. The state of development of the pulsed power technologies are sufficiently advanced now to make it compelling to visit or re-visit pulsed fusion approaches for application to propulsion where the cost of energy is not so demanding a factor as in the case of terrestrial power application. For propulsion application, the overall mass of the fusion system is the critical factor. Producing fusion reactions require extreme states of matter. Conceptually, these extreme states of matter are more readily realizable in the pulsed states, at least within appropriate bounds, than in the steady states. Significant saving in system mass may result in such systems. Magnetic fields are effective in confining plasma energy, whereas inertial compression is an effective way

  17. Advances in Plasma Process Equipment Development using Plasma and Electromagnetics Modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agarwal, Ankur

    2013-10-01

    Plasma processing is widely used in the semiconductor industry for thin film etching and deposition, modification of near-surface material, and cleaning. In particular, the challenges for plasma etching have increased as the critical feature dimensions for advanced semiconductor devices have decreased to 20 nm and below. Critical scaling limitations are increasingly driving the transition to 3D solutions such as multi-gate MOSFETs and 3D NAND structures. These structures create significant challenges for dielectric and conductor etching, especially given the high aspect ratio (HAR) of the features. Plasma etching equipment must therefore be capable of exacting profile control across the entire wafer for feature aspect ratios up to 80:1, high throughput, and exceptionally high selectivity. The multiple challenges for advanced 3D structures are addressed by Applied Material's plasma etching chambers by providing highly sophisticated control of ion energy, wafer temperature and plasma chemistry. Given the costs associated with such complex designs and reduced development time-scales, much of these design innovations have been enabled by utilizing advanced computational plasma modeling tools. We have expended considerable effort to develop 3-dimensional coupled plasma and electromagnetic modeling tools in recent years. In this work, we report on these modeling software and their application to plasma processing system design and evaluation of strategies for hardware and process improvement. Several of these examples deal with process uniformity, which is one of the major challenges facing plasma processing equipment design on large substrates. Three-dimensional plasma modeling is used to understand the sources of plasma non-uniformity, including the radio-frequency (RF) current path, and develop uniformity improvement techniques. Examples from coupled equipment and process models to investigate the dynamics of pulsed plasmas and their impact on plasma chemistry will

  18. Development in Diagnostics Application to Control Advanced Tokamak Plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Koide, Y.

    2008-03-12

    For continuous operation expected in DEMO, all the plasma current must be non-inductively driven, with self-generated neoclassical bootstrap current being maximized. The control of such steady state high performance tokamak plasma (so-called 'Advanced Tokamak Plasma') is a challenge because of the strong coupling between the current density, the pressure profile and MHD stability. In considering diagnostic needs for the advanced tokamak research, diagnostics for MHD are the most fundamental, since discharges which violate the MHD stability criteria either disrupt or have significantly reduced confinement. This report deals with the development in diagnostic application to control advanced tokamak plasma, with emphasized on recent progress in active feedback control of the current profile and the pressure profile under DEMO-relevant high bootstrap-current fraction. In addition, issues in application of the present-day actuators and diagnostics for the advanced control to DEMO will be briefly addressed, where port space for the advanced control may be limited so as to keep sufficient tritium breeding ratio (TBR)

  19. Helicon thruster plasma modeling: Two-dimensional fluid-dynamics and propulsive performances

    SciTech Connect

    Ahedo, Eduardo; Navarro-Cavalle, Jaume

    2013-04-15

    An axisymmetric macroscopic model of the magnetized plasma flow inside the helicon thruster chamber is derived, assuming that the power absorbed from the helicon antenna emission is known. Ionization, confinement, subsonic flows, and production efficiency are discussed in terms of design and operation parameters. Analytical solutions and simple scaling laws for ideal plasma conditions are obtained. The chamber model is then matched with a model of the external magnetic nozzle in order to characterize the whole plasma flow and assess thruster performances. Thermal, electric, and magnetic contributions to thrust are evaluated. The energy balance provides the power conversion between ions and electrons in chamber and nozzle, and the power distribution among beam power, ionization losses, and wall losses. Thruster efficiency is assessed, and the main causes of inefficiency are identified. The thermodynamic behavior of the collisionless electron population in the nozzle is acknowledged to be poorly known and crucial for a complete plasma expansion and good thrust efficiency.

  20. A Compact Disk Type Plasma Propulsion System with Modulated Magnetic Field for Nanoscale Space Vehicles

    SciTech Connect

    Fukuda, Takeshi; Ueda, Satoshi; Ohnishi, Yukihiro; Inomoto, Michiaki

    2008-12-31

    A compact 5 mm disk type plasma thruster simply composed of only a set of antenna windings and bias field coil which produces significant thrust of 0.74 mN with rotating magnetic field has been proposed and successfully developed for future applications to low altitude nanosatellites. The key technology issue is that the rotating speed is set above the ion plasma frequency but far below the electron plasma frequency, in order to produce the electron drag current and axial electric field as a consequence of the interaction with the bias field. The formation of axial electric field was confirmed and the produced plasma density was >6x10{sup 18} m{sup -3}, whereas the power consumption is 500 W in the inductively coupled mode of operation. The anticipated thrust density and specific thrust could potentially be extended to 7.64 Nm{sup -2} and 850 s, respectively, which is comparable to conventional Hall effect thrusters.

  1. Space Power Architectures for NASA Missions: The Applicability and Benefits of Advanced Power and Electric Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoffman, David J.

    2001-01-01

    The relative importance of electrical power systems as compared with other spacecraft bus systems is examined. The quantified benefits of advanced space power architectures for NASA Earth Science, Space Science, and Human Exploration and Development of Space (HEDS) missions is then presented. Advanced space power technologies highlighted include high specific power solar arrays, regenerative fuel cells, Stirling radioisotope power sources, flywheel energy storage and attitude control, lithium ion polymer energy storage and advanced power management and distribution.

  2. NASA electric propulsion program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hudson, W. R.; Finke, R. C.

    1976-01-01

    Major portions of the NASA electric propulsion technology program have attained the level of maturity required to achieve near-term technology readiness for flight missions for primary and auxiliary propulsion application. Advanced electric propulsion program elements addressing less immediate requirements are in more exploratory stages. This paper will discuss the NASA electric propulsion technology program including - planetary and earth orbit raising applications, attitude control and stationkeeping of geosynchronous satellites, and the research support program. Objectives, requirements, and hardware status are presented for each program.

  3. Advanced chemical propulsion at NASA Lewis: Metallized and high energy density propellants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Palaszewski, Bryan A.

    1991-01-01

    Two of the programs at the NASA Lewis Research Center investigating advanced systems for future space missions are the Metallized Propellant Program and the Advanced Concepts Program. Each program includes both experimental and theoretical studies of future propellants and the associated vehicle impacts and significant payload benefits for many types of space transportation. These programs are described.

  4. Recent Advancements in Microwave Imaging Plasma Diagnostics

    SciTech Connect

    H. Park; C.C. Chang; B.H. Deng; C.W. Domier; A.J.H. Donni; K. Kawahata; C. Liang; X.P. Liang; H.J. Lu; N.C. Luhmann, Jr.; A. Mase; H. Matsuura; E. Mazzucato; A. Miura; K. Mizuno; T. Munsat; K. and Y. Nagayama; M.J. van de Pol; J. Wang; Z.G. Xia; W-K. Zhang

    2002-03-26

    Significant advances in microwave and millimeter wave technology over the past decade have enabled the development of a new generation of imaging diagnostics for current and envisioned magnetic fusion devices. Prominent among these are revolutionary microwave electron cyclotron emission imaging (ECEI), microwave phase imaging interferometers, imaging microwave scattering and microwave imaging reflectometer (MIR) systems for imaging electron temperature and electron density fluctuations (both turbulent and coherent) and profiles (including transport barriers) on toroidal devices such as tokamaks, spherical tori, and stellarators. The diagnostic technology is reviewed, and typical diagnostic systems are analyzed. Representative experimental results obtained with these novel diagnostic systems are also presented.

  5. An overview of the VASIMR engine: High power space propulsion with RF plasma generation and heating

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Díaz, F. R. Chang

    2001-10-01

    The Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket (VASIMR) is a high power, radio frequency-driven magnetoplasma rocket, capable of exhaust modulation at constant power. While the plasma is produced by a helicon discharge, the bulk of the energy is added in a separate downstream stage by ion cyclotron resonance heating (ICRH). Axial momentum is obtained by the adiabatic expansion of the plasma in a magnetic nozzle. Exhaust variation in the VASIMR is primarily achieved by the selective partitioning of the RF power to the helicon and ICRH systems, with the proper adjustment of the propellant flow. However, other complementary techniques are also being studied. Operational and performance considerations favor the light gases. The physics and engineering of this device have been under study since the late 1970s. A NASA-led, research effort, involving several terms in the United States, continues to explore the scientific and technological foundations of this concept. The research involves theory, experiment, engineering design, mission analysis, and technology development. Experimentally, high density, stable plasma discharges have been generated in Helium, Hydrogen and Deuterium, as well as mixtures of these gases. Key issues involve the optimization of the helicon discharge for high-density operation and the efficient coupling of ICRH to the plasma, prior to acceleration by the magnetic nozzle. Theoretically, the dynamics of the magnetized plasma are being studied from kinetic and fluid perspectives. Plasma acceleration by the magnetic nozzle and subsequent detachment has been demonstrated in numerical simulations. These results are presently undergoing experimental verification. A brisk technology development effort for space-qualified, compact, solid-state RF equipment, and high temperature superconducting magnets is under way in support of this project. A conceptual point design for an early space demonstrator on the International Space Station has been defined

  6. ESA Spacecraft Propulsion Activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saccoccia, G.

    2004-10-01

    ESA is currently involved in several activities related to spacecraft chemical and electric propulsion, from the basic research and development of conventional and new concepts to the manufacturing, AIV and flight control of the propulsion subsystems of several European satellites. In the commercial application field, the strong competition among satellite manufacturers is a major driver for advancements in the area of propulsion, where increasing better performance together with low prices are required. Furthermore, new scientific and Earth observation missions dictate new challenging requirements for propulsion systems and components based on advanced technologies. For all these reasons, the technology area of spacecraft propulsion is in strong evolution and this paper presents an overview of the current European programmes and initiatives in this technology field. Specific attention is devoted in the paper to the performance and flight experience of spacecraft currently in orbit or ready to be launched.

  7. Los Alamos NEP research in advanced plasma thrusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schoenberg, Kurt; Gerwin, Richard

    1991-01-01

    Research was initiated in advanced plasma thrusters that capitalizes on lab capabilities in plasma science and technology. The goal of the program was to examine the scaling issues of magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) thruster performance in support of NASA's MPD thruster development program. The objective was to address multi-megawatt, large scale, quasi-steady state MPD thruster performance. Results to date include a new quasi-steady state operating regime which was obtained at space exploration initiative relevant power levels, that enables direct coaxial gun-MPD comparisons of thruster physics and performance. The radiative losses are neglible. Operation with an applied axial magnetic field shows the same operational stability and exhaust plume uniformity benefits seen in MPD thrusters. Observed gun impedance is in close agreement with the magnetic Bernoulli model predictions. Spatial and temporal measurements of magnetic field, electric field, plasma density, electron temperature, and ion/neutral energy distribution are underway. Model applications to advanced mission logistics are also underway.

  8. Evaluation of High-Power Solar Electric Propulsion using Advanced Ion, Hall, MPD, and PIT Thrusters for Lunar and Mars Cargo Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frisbee, Robert H.

    2006-01-01

    This paper presents the results of mission analyses that expose the advantages and disadvantages of high-power (MWe-class) Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP) for Lunar and Mars Cargo missions that would support human exploration of the Moon and Mars. In these analyses, we consider SEP systems using advanced Ion thrusters (the Xenon [Xe] propellant Herakles), Hall thrusters (the Bismuth [Bi] propellant Very High Isp Thruster with Anode Layer [VHITAL], magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) thrusters (the Lithium [Li] propellant Advanced Lithium-Fed, Applied-field Lorentz Force Accelerator (ALFA2), and pulsed inductive thruster (PIT) (the Ammonia [NH3] propellant Nuclear-PIT [NuPIT]). The analyses include comparison of the advanced-technology propulsion systems (VHITAL, ALFA2, and NuPIT) relative to state-of-theart Ion (Herakles) propulsion systems and quantify the unique benefits of the various technology options such as high power-per-thruster (and/or high power-per-thruster packaging volume), high specific impulse (Isp), high-efficiency, and tankage mass (e.g., low tankage mass due to the high density of bismuth propellant). This work is based on similar analyses for Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP) systems.

  9. Advanced electric propulsion system concept for electric vehicles. Addendum 1: Voltage considerations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raynard, A. E.; Forbes, F. E.

    1980-01-01

    The two electric vehicle propulsion systems that best met cost and performance goals were examined to assess the effect of battery pack voltage on system performance and cost. A voltage range of 54 to 540 V was considered for a typical battery pack capacity of 24 k W-hr. The highest battery specific energy (W-hr/kg) and the lowest cost ($/kW-hr) were obtained at the minimum voltage level. The flywheel system traction motor is a dc, mechanically commutated with shunt field control, and due to the flywheel the traction motor and the battery are not subject to extreme peaks of power demand. The basic system uses a permanent-magnet motor with electronic commutation supplied by an ac power control unit. In both systems battery cost were the major factor in system voltage selection, and a battery pack with the minimum voltage of 54 V produced the lowest life-cycle cost. The minimum life-cycle cost for the basic system with lead-acid batteries was $0.057/km and for the flywheel system was $0.037/km.

  10. Advanced Launch Vehicle Upper Stages Using Liquid Propulsion and Metallized Propellants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Palaszewski, Bryan A.

    1990-01-01

    Metallized propellants are liquid propellants with a metal additive suspended in a gelled fuel or oxidizer. Typically, aluminum (Al) particles are the metal additive. These propellants provide increase in the density and/or the specific impulse of the propulsion system. Using metallized propellant for volume-and mass-constrained upper stages can deliver modest increases in performance for low earth orbit to geosynchronous earth orbit (LEO-GEO) and other earth orbital transfer missions. Metallized propellants, however, can enable very fast planetary missions with a single-stage upper stage system. Trade studies comparing metallized propellant stage performance with non-metallized upper stages and the Inertial Upper Stage (IUS) are presented. These upper stages are both one- and two-stage vehicles that provide the added energy to send payloads to altitudes and onto trajectories that are unattainable with only the launch vehicle. The stage designs are controlled by the volume and the mass constraints of the Space Transportation System (STS) and Space Transportation System-Cargo (STS-C) launch vehicles. The influences of the density and specific impulse increases enabled by metallized propellants are examined for a variety of different stage and propellant combinations.

  11. Advanced launch vehicle upper stages using liquid propulsion and metallized propellants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Palaszewski, B. A.

    1990-01-01

    Metallized propellants are liquid propellants with a metal additive suspended in a gelled fuel or oxidizer. Typically, aluminum particles are the metal additives. These propellants provide increase in the density and/or the specific impulse of the propulsion system. Using metallized propellants for volume- and mass-constrained upper stages can deliver modest increases in performance for Low Earth Orbit to Geosynchronous Earth Orbit and other Earth orbital transfer missions. Metallized propellants, however, can enable very fast planetary missions with a single-stage upper stage system. Trade studies comparing metallized propellant stage performance with non-metallized upper stages and the Inertial Upper Stage are presented. These upper stages are both one- and two-stage vehicles that provide the added energy to send payloads to altitudes and onto trajectories that are unattainable with only the launch vehicle. The stage designs are controlled by the volume and the mass constraints of the Space Transportation System and Space Transportation System-Cargo launch vehicles. The influences of the density and specific impulse increases enabled by metallized propellants are examined for a variety of different stage and propellant combinations.

  12. Advanced propulsion for LEO-Moon transport. 3: Transportation model. M.S. Thesis - California Univ.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Henley, Mark W.

    1992-01-01

    A simplified computational model of low Earth orbit-Moon transportation system has been developed to provide insight into the benefits of new transportation technologies. A reference transportation infrastructure, based upon near-term technology developments, is used as a departure point for assessing other, more advanced alternatives. Comparison of the benefits of technology application, measured in terms of a mass payback ratio, suggests that several of the advanced technology alternatives could substantially improve the efficiency of low Earth orbit-Moon transportation.

  13. The NASA Electric Propulsion Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stone, James R.; Byers, David C.; King, David Q.

    1988-01-01

    The NASA OAST Propulsion, Power, and Energy Division supports an electric propulsion program aimed at providing benefits to a broad class of missions. Concepts which have the potential to enable or significantly benefit space exploration and exploitation are identified and advanced toward application in the near and far term. This paper summarizes recent program progress in mission/system analysis; in electrothermal, electrostatic, and electromagnetic propulsion technologies; and in propulsion/spacecraft integration.

  14. Non-uniform Erosion and Surface Evolution of Plasma-Facing Materials for Electric Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matthes, Christopher Stanley Rutter

    A study regarding the surface evolution of plasma-facing materials is presented. Experimental efforts were performed in the UCLA Pi Facility, designed to explore the physics of plasma-surface interactions. The influence of micro-architectured surfaces on the effects of plasma sputtering is compared with the response of planar samples. Ballistic deposition of sputtered atoms as a result of geometric re-trapping is observed. This provides a self-healing mechanism of micro-architectured surfaces during plasma exposure. This result is quantified using a QCM to demonstrate the evolution of surface features and the corresponding influence on the instantaneous sputtering yield. The sputtering yield of textured molybdenum samples exposed to 300 eV Ar plasma is found to be roughly 1 of the 2 corresponding value of flat samples, and increases with ion fluence. Mo samples exhibited a sputtering yield initially as low as 0.22+/-8%, converging to 0.4+/-8% at high fluence. Although the yield is dependent on the initial surface structure, it is shown to be transient, reaching a steady-state value that is independent of initial surface conditions. A continuum model of surface evolution resulting from sputtering, deposition and surface diffusion is also derived to resemble the damped Kuramoto-Sivashinsky (KS) equation of non-linear dynamics. Linear stability analysis of the evolution equation provides an estimate of the selected wavelength, and its dependence on the ion energy and angle of incidence. The analytical results are confirmed by numerical simulations of the equation with a Fast Fourier Transform method. It is shown that for an initially flat surface, small perturbations lead to the evolution of a selected surface pattern that has nano- scale wavelength. When the surface is initially patterned by other means, the final resulting pattern is a competition between the "templated" pattern and the "self-organized" structure. Potential future routes of research are also

  15. Advanced Optical Diagnostics for Ice Crystal Cloud Measurements in the NASA Glenn Propulsion Systems Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bencic, Timothy J.; Fagan, Amy; Van Zante, Judith F.; Kirkegaard, Jonathan P.; Rohler, David P.; Maniyedath, Arjun; Izen, Steven H.

    2013-01-01

    A light extinction tomography technique has been developed to monitor ice water clouds upstream of a direct connected engine in the Propulsion Systems Laboratory (PSL) at NASA Glenn Research Center (GRC). The system consists of 60 laser diodes with sheet generating optics and 120 detectors mounted around a 36-inch diameter ring. The sources are pulsed sequentially while the detectors acquire line-of-sight extinction data for each laser pulse. Using computed tomography algorithms, the extinction data are analyzed to produce a plot of the relative water content in the measurement plane. To target the low-spatial-frequency nature of ice water clouds, unique tomography algorithms were developed using filtered back-projection methods and direct inversion methods that use Gaussian basis functions. With the availability of a priori knowledge of the mean droplet size and the total water content at some point in the measurement plane, the tomography system can provide near real-time in-situ quantitative full-field total water content data at a measurement plane approximately 5 feet upstream of the engine inlet. Results from ice crystal clouds in the PSL are presented. In addition to the optical tomography technique, laser sheet imaging has also been applied in the PSL to provide planar ice cloud uniformity and relative water content data during facility calibration before the tomography system was available and also as validation data for the tomography system. A comparison between the laser sheet system and light extinction tomography resulting data are also presented. Very good agreement of imaged intensity and water content is demonstrated for both techniques. Also, comparative studies between the two techniques show excellent agreement in calculation of bulk total water content averaged over the center of the pipe.

  16. Recent Advances in Hydrogen Peroxide Propulsion Test Capability at NASA's Stennis Space Center E-Complex

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jacks, Thomas E.; Beisler, Michele

    2003-01-01

    In recent years, the rocket propulsion test capability at NASA's John C. Stennis Space Center's (SSC) E-Complex has been enhanced to include facilitization for hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) based ground testing. In particular, the E-3 test stand has conducted numerous test projects that have been reported in the open literature. These include combustion devices as simple as small-scale catalyst beds, and larger devices such as ablative thrust chambers and a flight-type engine (AR2-3). Consequently, the NASA SSC test engineering and operations knowledge base and infrastructure have grown considerably in order to conduct safe H2O2 test operations with a variety of test articles at the component and engine level. Currently, the E-Complex has a test requirement for a hydrogen peroxide based stage test. This new development, with its unique set of requirements, has motivated the facilitization for hydrogen peroxide propellant use at the E-2 Cell 2 test position in addition to E-3. Since the E-2 Cell 2 test position was not originally designed as a hydrogen peroxide test stand, a facility modernization-improvement project was planned and implemented in FY 2002-03 to enable this vertical engine test stand to accomodate H2O2. This paper discusses the ongoing enhancement of E-Complex ground test capability, specifically at the E-3 stand (Cell 1 and Cell 2) and E-2 Cell 2 stand, that enable current and future customers considerable test flexibility and operability in conducting their peroxide based rocket R&D efforts.

  17. Fusion Propulsion Z-Pinch Engine Concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miernik, J.; Statham, G.; Fabisinski, L.; Maples, C. D.; Adams, R.; Polsgrove, T.; Fincher, S.; Cassibry, J.; Cortez, R.; Turner, M.; Percy, T.

    2011-01-01

    Fusion-based nuclear propulsion has the potential to enable fast interplanetary transportation. Due to the great distances between the planets of our solar system and the harmful radiation environment of interplanetary space, high specific impulse (Isp) propulsion in vehicles with high payload mass fractions must be developed to provide practical and safe vehicles for human spaceflight missions. The Z-Pinch dense plasma focus method is a Magneto-Inertial Fusion (MIF) approach that may potentially lead to a small, low cost fusion reactor/engine assembly1. Recent advancements in experimental and theoretical understanding of this concept suggest favorable scaling of fusion power output yield 2. The magnetic field resulting from the large current compresses the plasma to fusion conditions, and this process can be pulsed over short timescales (10(exp -6 sec). This type of plasma formation is widely used in the field of Nuclear Weapons Effects testing in the defense industry, as well as in fusion energy research. A Decade Module 2 (DM2), approx.500 KJ pulsed-power is coming to the RSA Aerophysics Lab managed by UAHuntsville in January, 2012. A Z-Pinch propulsion concept was designed for a vehicle based on a previous fusion vehicle study called "Human Outer Planet Exploration" (HOPE), which used Magnetized Target Fusion (MTF) 3 propulsion. The reference mission is the transport of crew and cargo to Mars and back, with a reusable vehicle.

  18. SSTAC/ARTS Review of the Draft Integrated Technology Plan (ITP). Volume 2: Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    The topics addressed are: (1) space propulsion technology program overview; (2) space propulsion technology program fact sheet; (3) low thrust propulsion; (4) advanced propulsion concepts; (5) high-thrust chemical propulsion; (6) cryogenic fluid management; (7) NASA CSTI earth-to-orbit propulsion; (8) advanced main combustion chamber program; (9) earth-to-orbit propulsion turbomachinery; (10) transportation technology; (11) space chemical engines technology; (12) nuclear propulsion; (13) spacecraft on-board propulsion; and (14) low-cost commercial transport.

  19. Advanced technology payoffs for future rotorcraft, commuter aircraft, cruise missile, and APU propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Turk, M. A.; Zeiner, P. K.

    1986-01-01

    In connection with the significant advances made regarding the performance of larger gas turbines, challenges arise concerning the improvement of small gas turbine engines in the 250 to 1000 horsepower range. In response to these challenges, the NASA/Army-sponsored Small Engine Component Technology (SECT) study was undertaken with the objective to identify the engine cycle, configuration, and component technology requirements for the substantial performance improvements desired in year-2000 small gas turbine engines. In the context of this objective, an American turbine engine company evaluated engines for four year-2000 applications, including a rotorcraft, a commuter aircraft, a supersonic cruise missile, and an auxiliary power unit (APU). Attention is given to reference missions, reference engines, reference aircraft, year-2000 technology projections, cycle studies, advanced engine selections, and a technology evaluation.

  20. Development of a propulsion system and component test facility for advanced radioisotope powered Mars Hopper platforms

    SciTech Connect

    Robert C. O'Brien; Nathan D. Jerred; Steven D. Howe

    2011-02-01

    Verification and validation of design and modeling activities for radioisotope powered Mars Hopper platforms undertaken at the Center for Space Nuclear Research is essential for proof of concept. Previous research at the center has driven the selection of advanced material combinations; some of which require specialized handling capabilities. The development of a closed and contained test facility to forward this research is discussed within this paper.

  1. Development of Predictive Models of Advanced Propulsion Concepts for Low Cost Space Transportation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morrell, Michael Randy

    2002-01-01

    This final report presents the Graduate Student Research Program (GSRP) work Mr. Morrell was able to complete as a summer intern at NASA MSFS during the summer of 2001, and represents work completed from inception through project termination. The topics include: 1) NASA TD40 Organization; 2) Combustion Physics Lab; 3) Advanced Hydrocarbon Fuels; 4) GSRP Summer Tasks; 5) High Pressure Facility Installation; 6) High Pressure Combustion Issues; 7) High Energy Density Matter (HEDM) Hydrocarbons; and 8) GSRP Summer Intern Summary.

  2. The Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Kim, Tony; Emrich, William J.; Hickman, Robert R.; Broadway, Jeramie W.; Gerrish, Harold P.; Doughty, Glen; Belvin, Anthony; Borowski, Stanley K.; Scott, John

    2014-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) based on NTP could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of the NCPS in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progress made under the NCPS project could help enable both advanced NTP and advanced Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP). Nuclear propulsion can be affordable and viable compared to other propulsion systems and must overcome a biased public fear due to hyper-environmentalism and a false perception of radiation and explosion risk.

  3. Advanced Plasma Pyrolysis Assembly (PPA) Reactor and Process Development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wheeler, Richard R., Jr.; Hadley, Neal M.; Dahl, Roger W.; Abney, Morgan B.; Greenwood, Zachary; Miller, Lee; Medlen, Amber

    2012-01-01

    Design and development of a second generation Plasma Pyrolysis Assembly (PPA) reactor is currently underway as part of NASA's Atmosphere Revitalization Resource Recovery effort. By recovering up to 75% of the hydrogen currently lost as methane in the Sabatier reactor effluent, the PPA helps to minimize life support resupply costs for extended duration missions. To date, second generation PPA development has demonstrated significant technology advancements over the first generation device by doubling the methane processing rate while, at the same time, more than halving the required power. One development area of particular interest to NASA system engineers is fouling of the PPA reactor with carbonaceous products. As a mitigation plan, NASA MSFC has explored the feasibility of using an oxidative plasma based upon metabolic CO2 to regenerate the reactor window and gas inlet ports. The results and implications of this testing are addressed along with the advanced PPA reactor development.

  4. Liquid-metal-fed Pulsed Plasma Thrusters for In-space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markusic, Thomas E.

    2004-01-01

    Liquid metal propellants may provide a path toward more reliable and efficient pulsed plasma thrusters (PPTs). Conceptual thruster designs which eliminate the need for high current switches and propellant metering valves are described. Propellant loading techniques are suggested that show promise to increase thruster propellant utilization, dynamic, and electrical efficiency. Calibration results from a compact, electromagnetically-pumped propellant feed system are presented. Results for lithium and gallium propellants show capability to meter propellant at flow rates up to 10 +/- 0.1 mg/s. Experiments investigating the initiation of arc discharges using liquid metal droplets are presented. High speed photography and laser interferometry provide spatially and temporally resolved information on the decomposition of liquid metal droplets , and the evolution of the accelerating current channel.

  5. Millimeter-Wave Imaging Technology Advancements for Plasma Diagnostics Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kong, Xiangyu

    To realize fusion plant, the very first step is to understand the fundamental physics of materials under fusion conditions, i.e. to understand fusion plasmas. Our research group, Plasma Diagnostics Group, focuses on developing advanced tools for physicists to extract as much information as possible from fusion plasmas at millions degrees. The Electron Cyclotron Emission Imaging (ECEI) diagnostics is a very useful tool invented in this group to study fusion plasma electron temperature and it fluctuations. This dissertation presents millimeter wave imaging technology advances recently developed in this group to improve the ECEI system. New technologies made it more powerful to image and visualize magneto-hydrodynamics (MHD) activities and micro-turbulence in fusion plasmas. Topics of particular emphasis start from development of miniaturized elliptical substrate lens array. This novel substrate lens array replaces the previous generation substrate lens, hyper-hemispherical substrate lens, in terms of geometry. From the optical performance perspective, this substitution not only significantly simplifies the optical system with improved optical coupling, but also enhances the RF/LO coupling efficiency. By the benefit of the mini lens focusing properties, a wideband dual-dipole antenna array is carefully designed and developed. The new antenna array is optimized simultaneously for receiving both RF and LO, with sharp radiation patterns, low side-lobe levels, and less crosstalk between adjacent antennas. In addition, a high frequency antenna is also developed, which extends the frequency limit from 145 GHz to 220 GHz. This type of antenna will be used on high field operation tokamaks with toroidal fields in excess of 3 Tesla. Another important technology advance is so-called extended bandwidth double down-conversion electronics. This new electronics extends the instantaneous IF coverage from 2 to 9.2 GHz to 2 to 16.4 GHz. From the plasma point of view, it means that the

  6. Advanced Computing Technologies for Rocket Engine Propulsion Systems: Object-Oriented Design with C++

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bekele, Gete

    2002-01-01

    This document explores the use of advanced computer technologies with an emphasis on object-oriented design to be applied in the development of software for a rocket engine to improve vehicle safety and reliability. The primary focus is on phase one of this project, the smart start sequence module. The objectives are: 1) To use current sound software engineering practices, object-orientation; 2) To improve on software development time, maintenance, execution and management; 3) To provide an alternate design choice for control, implementation, and performance.

  7. Electric Propulsion Applications and Impacts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Curran, Frank M.; Wickenheiser, Timothy J.

    1996-01-01

    Most space missions require on-board propulsion systems and these systems are often dominant spacecraft mass drivers. Presently, on-board systems account for more than half the injected mass for commercial communications systems and even greater mass fractions for ambitious planetary missions. Anticipated trends toward the use of both smaller spacecraft and launch vehicles will likely increase pressure on the performance of on-board propulsion systems. The acceptance of arcjet thrusters for operational use on commercial communications satellites ushered in a new era in on-board propulsion and exponential growth of electric propulsion across a broad spectrum of missions is anticipated. NASA recognizes the benefits of advanced propulsion and NASA's Office of Space Access and Technology supports an aggressive On-Board Propulsion program, including a strong electric propulsion element, to assure the availability of high performance propulsion systems to meet the goals of the ambitious missions envisioned in the next two decades. The program scope ranges from fundamental research for future generation systems through specific insertion efforts aimed at near term technology transfer. The On-Board propulsion program is committed to carrying technologies to levels required for customer acceptance and emphasizes direct interactions with the user community and the development of commercial sources. This paper provides a discussion of anticipated missions, propulsion functions, and electric propulsion impacts followed by an overview of the electric propulsion element of the NASA On-Board Propulsion program.

  8. Processing of solid solution, mixed uranium/refractory metal carbides for advanced space nuclear power and propulsion systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knight, Travis Warren

    Nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP) and space nuclear power are two enabling technologies for the manned exploration of space and the development of research outposts in space and on other planets such as Mars. Advanced carbide nuclear fuels have been proposed for application in space nuclear power and propulsion systems. This study examined the processing technologies and optimal parameters necessary to fabricate samples of single phase, solid solution, mixed uranium/refractory metal carbides. In particular, the pseudo-ternary carbide, UC-ZrC-NbC, system was examined with uranium metal mole fractions of 5% and 10% and corresponding uranium densities of 0.8 to 1.8 gU/cc. Efforts were directed to those methods that could produce simple geometry fuel elements or wafers such as those used to fabricate a Square Lattice Honeycomb (SLHC) fuel element and reactor core. Methods of cold uniaxial pressing, sintering by induction heating, and hot pressing by self-resistance heating were investigated. Solid solution, high density (low porosity) samples greater than 95% TD were processed by cold pressing at 150 MPa and sintering above 2600 K for times longer than 90 min. Some impurity oxide phases were noted in some samples attributed to residual gases in the furnace during processing. Also, some samples noted secondary phases of carbon and UC2 due to some hyperstoichiometric powder mixtures having carbon-to-metal ratios greater than one. In all, 33 mixed carbide samples were processed and analyzed with half bearing uranium as ternary carbides of UC-ZrC-NbC. Scanning electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, and density measurements were used to characterize samples. Samples were processed from powders of the refractory mono-carbides and UC/UC 2 or from powders of uranium hydride (UH3), graphite, and refractory metal carbides to produce hypostoichiometric mixed carbides. Samples processed from the constituent carbide powders and sintered at temperatures above the melting point of UC

  9. Research and development of advanced lead-acid batteries for electric vehicle propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrew, M. G.; Bowman, D. E.

    1987-04-01

    The purpose was to develop an advanced lead-acid battery based on the concept of forced flow of electrolyte through porous electrodes for enhanced battery performance. The objectives were: specific energy of 42 Wh/kg, energy density of 70 Wh/l, and cycle life of 100 cycles. Accomplishments were: 35 flow-through cells with reduced construction time, higher fiber content in the positive active materials (PAM) with increased strength by a factor of 3, high-density PAM for increased life without utilization losses, confirmation of solid-state relaxation theory, methods for measuring permeability, 31 cycles achieved in C-450, oxygen recombination in many test cells, electrolyte reservoir can be below the top of the cells, and completed designs for positive and negative flow-through grids and for the injection molds to produce the grid/plastic laminates.

  10. Improved NASA-ANOPP Noise Prediction Computer Code for Advanced Subsonic Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kontos, K. B.; Janardan, B. A.; Gliebe, P. R.

    1996-01-01

    Recent experience using ANOPP to predict turbofan engine flyover noise suggests that it over-predicts overall EPNL by a significant amount. An improvement in this prediction method is desired for system optimization and assessment studies of advanced UHB engines. An assessment of the ANOPP fan inlet, fan exhaust, jet, combustor, and turbine noise prediction methods is made using static engine component noise data from the CF6-8OC2, E(3), and QCSEE turbofan engines. It is shown that the ANOPP prediction results are generally higher than the measured GE data, and that the inlet noise prediction method (Heidmann method) is the most significant source of this overprediction. Fan noise spectral comparisons show that improvements to the fan tone, broadband, and combination tone noise models are required to yield results that more closely simulate the GE data. Suggested changes that yield improved fan noise predictions but preserve the Heidmann model structure are identified and described. These changes are based on the sets of engine data mentioned, as well as some CFM56 engine data that was used to expand the combination tone noise database. It should be noted that the recommended changes are based on an analysis of engines that are limited to single stage fans with design tip relative Mach numbers greater than one.

  11. Electric propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Finke, R. C.

    1980-01-01

    The advanced electric propulsion program is directed towards lowering the specific impulse and increasing the thrust per unit of ion thruster systems. In addition, electrothermal and electromagnetic propulsion technologies are being developed to attempt to fill the gap between the conventional ion thruster and chemical rocket systems. Most of these new concepts are exagenous and are represented by rail accelerators, ablative Teflon thrusters, MPD arcs, Free Radicals, etc. Endogenous systems such as metallic hydrogen offer great promise and are also being pursued.

  12. An assessment of liquid propulsion in the United States

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mccarty, John P.; Murphy, J. M.

    1989-01-01

    The paper examines the status of liquid propulsion capability and technology in the U.S. today versus where it needs to be to satisfy proposed near and long term goals. Attention is given to four areas of liquid propulsion: earth-to-orbit propulsion, orbital transfer propulsion, on-orbit and planetary propulsion, and advanced propulsion. Recommendations on improving the state of liquid propulsion in the U.S. are presented.

  13. In-Space Propulsion Technologies for Robotic Exploration of the Solar System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Les; Meyer, Rae Ann; Frame, Kyle

    2006-01-01

    Supporting NASA's Science Mission Directorate, the In-Space Propulsion Technology Program is developing the next generation of space propulsion technologies for robotic, deep-space exploration. Recent technological advancements and demonstrations of key, high-payoff propulsion technologies have been achieved and will be described. Technologies under development and test include aerocapture, solar electric propulsion, solar sail propulsion, and advanced chemical propulsion.

  14. Space propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kazaroff, John M.

    1993-01-01

    Lewis Research Center is developing broad-based new technologies for space chemical engines to satisfy long-term needs of ETO launch vehicles and other vehicles operating in and beyond Earth orbit. Specific objectives are focused on high performance LO2/LH2 engines providing moderate thrusts of 7,5-200 klb. This effort encompasses research related to design analysis and manufacturing processes needed to apply advanced materials to subcomponents, components, and subsystems of space-based systems and related ground-support equipment. High-performance space-based chemical engines face a number of technical challenges. Liquid hydrogen turbopump impellers are often so large that they cannot be machined from a single piece, yet high stress at the vane/shroud interface makes bonding extremely difficult. Tolerances on fillets are critical on large impellers. Advanced materials and fabricating techniques are needed to address these and other issues of interest. Turbopump bearings are needed which can provide reliable, long life operation at high speed and high load with low friction losses. Hydrostatic bearings provide good performance, but transients during pump starts and stops may be an issue because no pressurized fluid is available unless a separate bearing pressurization system is included. Durable materials and/or coatings are needed that can demonstrate low wear in the harsh LO2/LH2 environment. Advanced materials are also needed to improve the lifetime, reliability and performance of other propulsion system elements such as seals and chambers.

  15. Space propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazaroff, John M.

    1993-02-01

    Lewis Research Center is developing broad-based new technologies for space chemical engines to satisfy long-term needs of ETO launch vehicles and other vehicles operating in and beyond Earth orbit. Specific objectives are focused on high performance LO2/LH2 engines providing moderate thrusts of 7,5-200 klb. This effort encompasses research related to design analysis and manufacturing processes needed to apply advanced materials to subcomponents, components, and subsystems of space-based systems and related ground-support equipment. High-performance space-based chemical engines face a number of technical challenges. Liquid hydrogen turbopump impellers are often so large that they cannot be machined from a single piece, yet high stress at the vane/shroud interface makes bonding extremely difficult. Tolerances on fillets are critical on large impellers. Advanced materials and fabricating techniques are needed to address these and other issues of interest. Turbopump bearings are needed which can provide reliable, long life operation at high speed and high load with low friction losses. Hydrostatic bearings provide good performance, but transients during pump starts and stops may be an issue because no pressurized fluid is available unless a separate bearing pressurization system is included. Durable materials and/or coatings are needed that can demonstrate low wear in the harsh LO2/LH2 environment. Advanced materials are also needed to improve the lifetime, reliability and performance of other propulsion system elements such as seals and chambers.

  16. In-Space Propulsion for Science and Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bishop-Behel, Karen; Johnson, Les

    2004-01-01

    This paper presents viewgraphs on the development of In-Space Propulsion Technologies for Science and Exploration. The topics include: 1) In-Space Propulsion Technology Program Overview; 2) In-Space Propulsion Technology Project Status; 3) Solar Electric Propulsion; 4) Next Generation Electric Propulsion; 5) Aerocapture Technology Alternatives; 6) Aerocapture; 7) Advanced Thermal Protection Systems Developed and Being Tested; 8) Solar Sails; 9) Advanced Chemical Propulsion; 10) Momentum Exchange Tethers; and 11) Momentum-exchange/electrodynamic reboost (MXER) Tether Basic Operation.

  17. Tree Topping Ceremony at NASA's Propulsion Research Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    A new, world-class laboratory for research into future space transportation technologies is under construction at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) in Huntsville, AL. The state-of-the-art Propulsion Research Laboratory will serve as a leading national resource for advanced space propulsion research. Its purpose is to conduct research that will lead to the creation and development of irnovative propulsion technologies for space exploration. The facility will be the epicenter of the effort to move the U.S. space program beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of greatly improved access to space and rapid transit throughout the solar system. The Laboratory is designed to accommodate researchers from across the United States, including scientists and engineers from NASA, the Department of Defense, the Department of Energy, universities, and industry. The facility, with 66,000 square feet of useable laboratory space, will feature a high degree of experimental capability. Its flexibility will allow it to address a broad range of propulsion technologies and concepts, such as plasma, electromagnetic, thermodynamic, and propellantless propulsion. An important area of emphasis will be development and utilization of advanced energy sources, including highly energetic chemical reactions, solar energy, and processes based on fission, fusion, and antimatter. The Propulsion Research Laboratory is vital for developing the advanced propulsion technologies needed to open up the space frontier, and will set the stage of research that could revolutionize space transportation for a broad range of applications. This photo depicts construction workers taking part in a tree topping ceremony as the the final height of the laboratory is framed. The ceremony is an old German custom of paying homage to the trees that gave their lives in preparation of the building site.

  18. Plasma arc welding takes on the advanced solid rocket motor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Irving, Bob

    1992-12-01

    The general design of the Advanced Solid Rocket Motor (ASRM), developed with the aim of improving the flight safety, reliability, producibility, and performance of the Space Shuttle Motor, is described. The material for the new ASRM will be the more weldable HP-9-4-30 steel; it will be welded by the plasma arc process used in the straight polarity mode. An HP-9-4-25 filler metal will be used to deposit the fill pass and a cap pass; the welding operation will be computer controlled.

  19. Distributed Propulsion Vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Hyun Dae

    2010-01-01

    Since the introduction of large jet-powered transport aircraft, the majority of these vehicles have been designed by placing thrust-generating engines either under the wings or on the fuselage to minimize aerodynamic interactions on the vehicle operation. However, advances in computational and experimental tools along with new technologies in materials, structures, and aircraft controls, etc. are enabling a high degree of integration of the airframe and propulsion system in aircraft design. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has been investigating a number of revolutionary distributed propulsion vehicle concepts to increase aircraft performance. The concept of distributed propulsion is to fully integrate a propulsion system within an airframe such that the aircraft takes full synergistic benefits of coupling of airframe aerodynamics and the propulsion thrust stream by distributing thrust using many propulsors on the airframe. Some of the concepts are based on the use of distributed jet flaps, distributed small multiple engines, gas-driven multi-fans, mechanically driven multifans, cross-flow fans, and electric fans driven by turboelectric generators. This paper describes some early concepts of the distributed propulsion vehicles and the current turboelectric distributed propulsion (TeDP) vehicle concepts being studied under the NASA s Subsonic Fixed Wing (SFW) Project to drastically reduce aircraft-related fuel burn, emissions, and noise by the year 2030 to 2035.

  20. Advanced electric propulsion research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilbur, Paul J.

    1988-01-01

    Results are presented which show that hollow cathodes can be operated on ammonia but that sustained operation in the high pressures where arcjet thrusters operate (of the order of 1000 Torr) is difficult to achieve. The concept of using contoured, fine wire meshes attached across the screen grid apertures in an ion thruster to effect control of the ion beam divergence is introduced. The concept is compared to conventional (free sheath) ion extraction and is shown to be potentially attractive. The performance related effects of changing the anode and cathode locations and of interchanging hollow cathode and refractory filament electron sources within an 8-cm diameter, argon, ring cusp ion thruster discharge chamber are examined. The effects induced in discharge chamber performance by changes in magnetic field strength and configuration and in propellant flow distribution are also measured. Results are presented in terms of changes in the parameters that describe the effectiveness of primary electron utilization and ion extraction into the beam. The apparatus and instrumentation used to study hollow cathode operation at high electron emission levels (of the order of 100 A) is described.

  1. Electric Drive Dynamic Thermal System Model for Advanced Vehicle Propulsion Technologies: Cooperative Research and Development Final Report, CRADA Number CRD-09-360

    SciTech Connect

    Bennion, K.

    2013-10-01

    Electric drive systems, which include electric machines and power electronics, are a key enabling technology for advanced vehicle propulsion systems that reduce the dependence of the U.S. transportation sector on petroleum. However, to penetrate the market, these electric drive technologies must enable vehicle solutions that are economically viable. The push to make critical electric drivesystems smaller, lighter, and more cost-effective brings respective challenges associated with heat removal and system efficiency. In addition, the wide application of electric drive systems to alternative propulsion technologies ranging from integrated starter generators, to hybrid electric vehicles, to full electric vehicles presents challenges in terms of sizing critical components andthermal management systems over a range of in-use operating conditions. This effort focused on developing a modular modeling methodology to enable multi-scale and multi-physics simulation capabilities leading to generic electric drive system models applicable to alternative vehicle propulsion configurations. The primary benefit for the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is the abilityto define operating losses with the respective impact on component sizing, temperature, and thermal management at the component, subsystem, and system level. However, the flexible nature of the model also allows other uses related to evaluating the impacts of alternative component designs or control schemes depending on the interests of other parties.

  2. Robust Low Cost Liquid Rocket Combustion Chamber by Advanced Vacuum Plasma Process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holmes, Richard; Elam, Sandra; Ellis, David L.; McKechnie, Timothy; Hickman, Robert; Rose, M. Franklin (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Next-generation, regeneratively cooled rocket engines will require materials that can withstand high temperatures while retaining high thermal conductivity. Fabrication techniques must be cost efficient so that engine components can be manufactured within the constraints of shrinking budgets. Three technologies have been combined to produce an advanced liquid rocket engine combustion chamber at NASA-Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) using relatively low-cost, vacuum-plasma-spray (VPS) techniques. Copper alloy NARloy-Z was replaced with a new high performance Cu-8Cr-4Nb alloy developed by NASA-Glenn Research Center (GRC), which possesses excellent high-temperature strength, creep resistance, and low cycle fatigue behavior combined with exceptional thermal stability. Functional gradient technology, developed building composite cartridges for space furnaces was incorporated to add oxidation resistant and thermal barrier coatings as an integral part of the hot wall of the liner during the VPS process. NiCrAlY, utilized to produce durable protective coating for the space shuttle high pressure fuel turbopump (BPFTP) turbine blades, was used as the functional gradient material coating (FGM). The FGM not only serves as a protection from oxidation or blanching, the main cause of engine failure, but also serves as a thermal barrier because of its lower thermal conductivity, reducing the temperature of the combustion liner 200 F, from 1000 F to 800 F producing longer life. The objective of this program was to develop and demonstrate the technology to fabricate high-performance, robust, inexpensive combustion chambers for advanced propulsion systems (such as Lockheed-Martin's VentureStar and NASA's Reusable Launch Vehicle, RLV) using the low-cost VPS process. VPS formed combustion chamber test articles have been formed with the FGM hot wall built in and hot fire tested, demonstrating for the first time a coating that will remain intact through the hot firing test, and with

  3. NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, L.; Robinson, J.

    2004-11-01

    NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology Program is investing in technologies that have the potential to revolutionize the robotic exploration of deep space. For robotic exploration and science missions, increased efficiencies of future propulsion systems are critical to reduce overall life-cycle costs and, in some cases, enable missions previously considered impossible. Continued reliance on conventional chemical propulsion alone will not enable the robust exploration of deep space - the maximum theoretical efficiencies have almost been reached and they are insufficient to meet needs for many ambitious science missions currently being considered. The In-Space Propulsion Technology Program's technology portfolio includes many advanced propulsion systems. From the next generation ion propulsion system operating in the 5 - 10 kW range, to advanced cryogenic propulsion, substantial advances in spacecraft propulsion performance are anticipated. Some of the most promising technologies for achieving these goals use the environment of space itself for energy and propulsion and are generically called, ``propellantless" because they do not require on-board fuel to achieve thrust. Propellantless propulsion technologies include scientific innovations such as solar sails, electrodynamic and momentum transfer tethers, aeroassist, and aerocapture. This paper will provide an overview of both propellantless and propellant-based advanced propulsion technologies, and NASA's plans for advancing them as part of the \\$60M per year In-Space Propulsion Technology Program. Solar sails and aerocapture are candidates for flight validation as early as 2008 in partnership with NASA's New Millennium Program.

  4. Electric propulsion for small satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keidar, Michael; Zhuang, Taisen; Shashurin, Alexey; Teel, George; Chiu, Dereck; Lukas, Joseph; Haque, Samudra; Brieda, Lubos

    2015-01-01

    Propulsion is required for satellite motion in outer space. The displacement of a satellite in space, orbit transfer and its attitude control are the task of space propulsion, which is carried out by rocket engines. Electric propulsion uses electric energy to energize or accelerate the propellant. The electric propulsion, which uses electrical energy to accelerate propellant in the form of plasma, is known as plasma propulsion. Plasma propulsion utilizes the electric energy to first, ionize the propellant and then, deliver energy to the resulting plasma leading to plasma acceleration. Many types of plasma thrusters have been developed over last 50 years. The variety of these devices can be divided into three main categories dependent on the mechanism of acceleration: (i) electrothermal, (ii) electrostatic and (iii) electromagnetic. Recent trends in space exploration associate with the paradigm shift towards small and efficient satellites, or micro- and nano-satellites. A particular example of microthruster considered in this paper is the micro-cathode arc thruster (µCAT). The µCAT is based on vacuum arc discharge. Thrust is produced when the arc discharge erodes some of the cathode at high velocity and is accelerated out the nozzle by a Lorentz force. The thrust amount is controlled by varying the frequency of pulses with demonstrated range to date of 1-50 Hz producing thrust ranging from 1 µN to 0.05 mN.

  5. Progress in NASA Rotorcraft Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DellaCorte, Christopher; Johnson, Susan M.

    2008-01-01

    This presentation reviews recent progress made under NASA s Subsonic Rotary Wing (SRW) propulsion research activities. Advances in engines, drive systems and optimized propulsion systems are discussed. Progress in wide operability compressors, modeling of variable geometry turbine performance, foil gas bearings and multi-speed transmissions are presented.

  6. Results of the Workshop on Two-Phase Flow, Fluid Stability and Dynamics: Issues in Power, Propulsion, and Advanced Life Support Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McQuillen, John; Rame, Enrique; Kassemi, Mohammad; Singh, Bhim; Motil, Brian

    2003-01-01

    The Two-phase Flow, Fluid Stability and Dynamics Workshop was held on May 15, 2003 in Cleveland, Ohio to define a coherent scientific research plan and roadmap that addresses the multiphase fluid problems associated with NASA s technology development program. The workshop participants, from academia, industry and government, prioritized various multiphase issues and generated a research plan and roadmap to resolve them. This report presents a prioritization of the various multiphase flow and fluid stability phenomena related primarily to power, propulsion, fluid and thermal management and advanced life support; and a plan to address these issues in a logical and timely fashion using analysis, ground-based and space-flight experiments.

  7. Electric propulsion system technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brophy, John R.; Garner, Charles E.; Goodfellow, Keith D.

    1991-01-01

    The work performed on the Ion Propulsion System Technology Task in FY90 is described. The objectives of this work fall under two broad categories. The first of these deals with issues associated with the application of xenon ion thrusters for primary propulsion of planetary spacecraft, and the second with the investigation of technologies which will facilitate the development of larger, higher power ion thrusters to support more advanced mission applications. Most of the effort was devoted to investigation of the critical issues associated with the use of ion thrusters for planetary spacecraft. These issues may be succinctly referred to as life time, system integration, and throttling. Chief among these is the engine life time. If the engines do not have sufficient life to perform the missions of interest, then the other issues become unimportant. Ion engine life time was investigated through two experimental programs: an investigation into the reduction of ion engine internal sputter erosion through the addition of small quantities of nitrogen, and a long duration cathode life test. In addition, a literature review and analysis of accelerator grid erosion were performed. The nitrogen addition tests indicated that the addition of between 0.5 and 1.0 percent of nitrogen by mass to the xenon propellant results in a reduction in the sputter erosion of discharge chamber components by a factor of between 20 and 50, with negligible reduction in thruster performance. The long duration test of a 6.35-mm dia. xenon hollow cathode is still in progress, and has accumulated more than 4,000 hours of operation at an emission current of 25 A at the time of this writing. One of the major system integration issues concerns possible interactions of the ion thruster produced charge exchange plasma with the spacecraft. A computer model originally developed to describe the behavior of mercury ion thruster charge exchange plasmas was resurrected and modified for xenon propellant. This

  8. Electric propulsion system technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brophy, John R.; Garner, Charles E.; Goodfellow, Keith D.; Pivirotto, Thomas J.; Polk, James E.

    1992-01-01

    The work performed in fiscal year (FY) 1991 under the Propulsion Technology Program RTOP (Research and Technology Objectives and Plans) No. (55) 506-42-31 for Low-Thrust Primary and Auxiliary Propulsion technology development is described. The objectives of this work fall under two broad categories. The first of these deals with the development of ion engines for primary propulsion in support of solar system exploration. The second with the advancement of steady-state magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) thruster technology at 100 kW to multimegawatt input power levels. The major technology issues for ion propulsion are demonstration of adequate engine life at the 5 to 10 kW power level and scaling ion engines to power levels of tens to hundreds of kilowatts. Tests of a new technique in which the decelerator grid of a three-grid ion accelerator system is biased negative of neutralizer common potential in order to collect facility induced charge-exchange ions are described. These tests indicate that this SAND (Screen, Accelerator, Negative Decelerator) configuration may enable long duration ion engine endurance tests to be performed at vacuum chamber pressures an order of magnitude higher than previously possible. The corresponding reduction in pumping speed requirements enables endurance tests of 10 kW class ion engines to be performed within the resources of existing technology programs. The results of a successful 5,000-hr endurance of a xenon hollow cathode operating at an emission current of 25 A are described, as well as the initial tests of hollow cathodes operating on a mixture of argon and 3 percent nitrogen. Work performed on the development of carbon/carbon grids, a multi-orifice hollow cathode, and discharge chamber erosion reduction through the addition of nitrogen are also described. Critical applied-field MPD thruster technical issues remain to be resolved, including demonstration of reliable steady-state operation at input powers of hundreds to thousands of

  9. Electric propulsion system technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brophy, John R.; Garner, Charles E.; Goodfellow, Keith D.; Pivirotto, Thomas J.; Polk, James E.

    1992-11-01

    The work performed in fiscal year (FY) 1991 under the Propulsion Technology Program RTOP (Research and Technology Objectives and Plans) No. (55) 506-42-31 for Low-Thrust Primary and Auxiliary Propulsion technology development is described. The objectives of this work fall under two broad categories. The first of these deals with the development of ion engines for primary propulsion in support of solar system exploration. The second with the advancement of steady-state magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) thruster technology at 100 kW to multimegawatt input power levels. The major technology issues for ion propulsion are demonstration of adequate engine life at the 5 to 10 kW power level and scaling ion engines to power levels of tens to hundreds of kilowatts. Tests of a new technique in which the decelerator grid of a three-grid ion accelerator system is biased negative of neutralizer common potential in order to collect facility induced charge-exchange ions are described. These tests indicate that this SAND (Screen, Accelerator, Negative Decelerator) configuration may enable long duration ion engine endurance tests to be performed at vacuum chamber pressures an order of magnitude higher than previously possible. The corresponding reduction in pumping speed requirements enables endurance tests of 10 kW class ion engines to be performed within the resources of existing technology programs. The results of a successful 5,000-hr endurance of a xenon hollow cathode operating at an emission current of 25 A are described, as well as the initial tests of hollow cathodes operating on a mixture of argon and 3 percent nitrogen. Work performed on the development of carbon/carbon grids, a multi-orifice hollow cathode, and discharge chamber erosion reduction through the addition of nitrogen are also described. Critical applied-field MPD thruster technical issues remain to be resolved, including demonstration of reliable steady-state operation at input powers of hundreds to thousands of

  10. Solar electric propulsion thruster interactions with solar arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parks, D. E.; Katz, I.

    1977-01-01

    The effect of interactions of spacecraft-generated and naturally occurring plasmas with high voltage solar array components on an advanced solar electric propulsion system proposed for the Halley's Comet rendezvous mission was investigated. The spacecraft-generated plasma consists of mercury ions and neutralizing electrons resulting from the operation of ion thrusters (the charge-exchange plasma) and associated hollow cathode neutralizers. Quantitative results are given for the parasitic currents and power coupled into solar arrays with voltage fixed as a function of position on the array.

  11. Solar Thermal Propulsion Test

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Researchers at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) have designed, fabricated, and tested the first solar thermal engine, a non-chemical rocket engine that produces lower thrust but has better thrust efficiency than a chemical combustion engine. MSFC turned to solar thermal propulsion in the early 1990s due to its simplicity, safety, low cost, and commonality with other propulsion systems. Solar thermal propulsion works by acquiring and redirecting solar energy to heat a propellant. The 20- by 24-ft heliostat mirror (not shown in this photograph) has a dual-axis control that keeps a reflection of the sunlight on the 18-ft diameter concentrator mirror, which then focuses the sunlight to a 4-in focal point inside the vacuum chamber. The focal point has 10 kilowatts of intense solar power. This image, taken during the test, depicts the light being concentrated into the focal point inside the vacuum chamber. As part of MSFC's Space Transportation Directorate, the Propulsion Research Center serves as a national resource for research of advanced, revolutionary propulsion technologies. The mission is to move the Nation's capabilities beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of aircraft-like access to Earth orbit, rapid travel throughout the solar system, and exploration of interstellar space.

  12. NASA Breakthrough Propulsion Physics Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Millis, Marc G.

    1998-01-01

    In 1996, NASA established the Breakthrough Propulsion Physics program to seek the ultimate breakthroughs in space transportation: propulsion that requires no propellant mass, propulsion that attains the maximum transit speeds physically possible, and breakthrough methods of energy production to power such devices. Topics of interest include experiments and theories regarding the coupling of gravity and electromagnetism, vacuum fluctuation energy, warp drives and worm-holes, and superluminal quantum effects. Because these propulsion goals are presumably far from fruition, a special emphasis is to identify affordable, near-term, and credible research that could make measurable progress toward these propulsion goals. The methods of the program and the results of the 1997 workshop are presented. This Breakthrough Propulsion Physics program, managed by Lewis Research Center, is one part of a comprehensive, long range Advanced Space Transportation Plan managed by Marshall Space Flight Center.

  13. Propulsion IVHM Extreme Environment Instrumentation Power IVHM

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zakrajsek, June

    2000-01-01

    This paper presents propulsion and instrumentation power for integrated vehicle health management technologies. The topics include: 1) Propulsion IVHM Capabilities Research; 2) Projects: X-33 Post-Test Diagnostic System; 3) X-34 NITEX; 4) Advanced Health Monitoring Systems; 5) Active Vibration Monitoring System; 6) Smart Self Healing Propulsion Systems; 7) Extreme Environment Sensors; and 8) Systems Engineering and Integration.

  14. NASA Propulsion Engineering Research Center, Volume 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    This is the second volume in the 1994 annual report for the NASA Propulsion Engineering Research Center's Sixth Annual Symposium. This conference covered: (1) Combustors and Nozzles; (2) Turbomachinery Aero- and Hydro-dynamics; (3) On-board Propulsion systems; (4) Advanced Propulsion Applications; (5) Vaporization and Combustion; (6) Heat Transfer and Fluid Mechanics; and (7) Atomization and Sprays.

  15. Propulsion system noise reduction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Feiler, C. E.; Heidelberg, L. J.; Karchmer, A. M.; Lansing, D. L.; Miller, B. A.; Rice, E. J.

    1975-01-01

    The progress in propulsion system noise reduction is reviewed. The noise technology areas discussed include: fan noise; advances in suppression including conventional acoustic treatment, high Mach number inlets, and wing shielding; engine core noise; flap noise from both under-the-wing and over-the-wing powered-lift systems; supersonic jet noise suppression; and the NASA program in noise prediction.

  16. General Aviation Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1980-01-01

    Programs exploring and demonstrating new technologies in general aviation propulsion are considered. These programs are the quiet, clean, general aviation turbofan (QCGAT) program; the general aviation turbine engine (GATE) study program; the general aviation propeller technology program; and the advanced rotary, diesel, and reciprocating engine programs.

  17. The Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Kim, Tony; Emrich, William J.; Hickman, Robert R.; Broadway, Jeramie W.; Gerrish, Harold P.; Doughty, Glen; Belvin, Anthony; Borowski, Stanley K.; Scott, John

    2014-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) based on NTP could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of the NCPS in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progres made under the NCPS project could help enable both advanced NTP and advanced Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP).

  18. Free radical propulsion concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hawkins, C. E.; Nakanishi, S.

    1981-01-01

    A free radical propulsion concept utilizing the recombination energy of dissociated low molecular weight gases to produce thrust was examined. The concept offered promise of a propulsion system operating at a theoretical impulse, with hydrogen, as high as 2200 seconds at high thrust to power ratio, thus filling the gas existing between chemical and electrostatic propulsion capabilities. Microwave energy used to dissociate a continuously flowing gas was transferred to the propellant via three body recombination for conversion to propellant kinetic energy. Power absorption by the microwave plasma discharge was in excess of 90 percent over a broad range of pressures. Gas temperatures inferred from gas dynamic equations showed much higher temperatures from microwave heating than from electrothermal heating. Spectroscopic analysis appeared to corroborate the inferred temperatures of one of the gases tested.

  19. NASA's Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Mitchell, Doyce P.; Kim, Tony; Emrich, William J.; Hickman, Robert R.; Gerrish, Harold P.; Doughty, Glen; Belvin, Anthony; Clement, Steven; Borowski, Stanley K.; Scott, John; Power, Kevin P.

    2015-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation NTP system could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of a first generation NTP in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC- 3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progress made under the NTP project could also help enable high performance fission power systems and Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP).

  20. Space Transportation Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liou, Meng-Sing; Stewart, Mark E.; Suresh, Ambady; Owen, A. Karl

    2001-01-01

    This report outlines the Space Transportation Propulsion Systems for the NPSS (Numerical Propulsion System Simulation) program. Topics include: 1) a review of Engine/Inlet Coupling Work; 2) Background/Organization of Space Transportation Initiative; 3) Synergy between High Performance Computing and Communications Program (HPCCP) and Advanced Space Transportation Program (ASTP); 4) Status of Space Transportation Effort, including planned deliverables for FY01-FY06, FY00 accomplishments (HPCCP Funded) and FY01 Major Milestones (HPCCP and ASTP); and 5) a review current technical efforts, including a review of the Rocket-Based Combined-Cycle (RBCC), Scope of Work, RBCC Concept Aerodynamic Analysis and RBCC Concept Multidisciplinary Analysis.

  1. Propulsion by laser power

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schall, Wolfgang O.

    2005-03-01

    Laser power can be transformed into propulsive power to set into motion various kinds of vehicles and other objects on the surface, in the air and in space. The transformation process can occur indirectly, for instance by producing electricity via photovoltaic cells or thermal power. Another possibility is the generation of impulses by the ablation of matter from a solid body, or by the initiation of a high-pressure plasma breakdown wave in a fluid medium. Applications range from driving remotely powered roving vehicles to various kinds of thrusters for space propulsion. The direct thrust of the laser photon flux can be used for the propulsion of laser sailcrafts. Applications in space range from micropropulsion for satellite attitude control in the near-term to futuristic interstellar travel driven by photon propulsion. Other propulsive applications in space concern the change of orbits of objects like man-made orbital debris as well as of large objects (asteroids, comets) for protection of Earth against disastrous impacts.

  2. Vacuum Plasma Spray of CuCrNb Alloy for Advanced Liquid - Fuel Combustion Chambers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zimmerman, Frank

    2000-01-01

    The copper-8 atomic percent chromium-4 atomic percent niobium (CuCrNb) alloy was developed by Glenn Research Center (formally Lewis Research Center) as an improved alloy for combustion chamber liners. In comparison to NARloy-Z, the baseline (as in Space Shuttle Main Engine) alloy for such liners, CuCrNb demonstrates mechanical and thermophysical properties equivalent to NARloy-Z, but at temperatures 100 C to 150 C (180 F to 270 F) higher. Anticipated materials related benefits include decreasing the thrust cell liner weight 5% to 20%, increasing the service life at least two fold over current combustion chamber design, and increasing the safety margins available to designers. By adding an oxidation and thermal barrier coating to the liner, the combustion chamber can operate at even higher temperatures. For all these benefits, however, this alloy cannot be formed using conventional casting and forging methods because of the levels of chromium and niobium, which exceed their solubility limit in copper. Until recently, the only forming process that maintains the required microstructure of CrNb intermetallics is powder metallurgy formation of a billet from powder stock, followed by extrusion. This severely limits its usefulness in structural applications, particularly the complex shapes required for combustion chamber liners. Vacuum plasma spray (VPS) has been demonstrated as a method to form structural articles including small combustion chambers from the CuCrNb alloy. In addition, an oxidation and thermal barrier layer can be formed integrally on the hot wall of the liner that improve performance and extend service life. This paper discusses the metallurgy and thermomechanical properties of VPS formed CuCrNb versus the baseline powder metallurgy process, and the manufacturing of small combustion chamber liners at Marshall Space Flight Center using the VPS process. The benefits to advanced propulsion initiatives of using VPS to fabricate combustion chamber liners

  3. DUAL-MODE PROPULSION SYSTEM ENABLING CUBESAT EXPLORATION OF THE SOLAR SYSTEM NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Phase I Final Report

    SciTech Connect

    Nathan Jerred; Troy Howe; Adarsh Rajguru; Dr. Steven Howe

    2014-06-01

    -based systems. The second scenario allows for the production of electrical power, which is then available for electric-based propulsion. Additionally, once at location the production of electrical power can be dedicated to the payload’s communication system for data transfer. Ultimately, the proposed dual-mode propulsion platform capitalizes on the benefits of two types of propulsion methods – the thrust of thermal propulsion ideal for quick orbital maneuvers and the specific impulse of electric propulsion ideal for efficient inter-planetary travel. Previous versions of this RTR-based concept have been studied for various applications [NETS 1-3]. The current version of this concept is being matured through a NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Phase I grant, awarded for FY 2014. In this study the RTR concept is being developed to deliver a 6U CubeSat payload to the orbit of the Saturnian moon - Enceladus. Additionally, this study will develop an entire mission architecture for Enceladus targeting a total allowable launch mass of 1,000 kg.

  4. Z-Pinch fusion-based nuclear propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miernik, J.; Statham, G.; Fabisinski, L.; Maples, C. D.; Adams, R.; Polsgrove, T.; Fincher, S.; Cassibry, J.; Cortez, R.; Turner, M.; Percy, T.

    2013-02-01

    Fusion-based nuclear propulsion has the potential to enable fast interplanetary transportation. Due to the great distances between the planets of our solar system and the harmful radiation environment of interplanetary space, high specific impulse (Isp) propulsion in vehicles with high payload mass fractions must be developed to provide practical and safe vehicles for human space flight missions. The Z-Pinch dense plasma focus method is a Magneto-Inertial Fusion (MIF) approach that may potentially lead to a small, low cost fusion reactor/engine assembly [1]. Recent advancements in experimental and theoretical understanding of this concept suggest favorable scaling of fusion power output yield [2]. The magnetic field resulting from the large current compresses the plasma to fusion conditions, and this process can be pulsed over short timescales (10-6 s). This type of plasma formation is widely used in the field of Nuclear Weapons Effects testing in the defense industry, as well as in fusion energy research. A Z-Pinch propulsion concept was designed for a vehicle based on a previous fusion vehicle study called "Human Outer Planet Exploration" (HOPE), which used Magnetized Target Fusion (MTF) [3] propulsion. The reference mission is the transport of crew and cargo to Mars and back, with a reusable vehicle. The analysis of the Z-Pinch MIF propulsion system concludes that a 40-fold increase of Isp over chemical propulsion is predicted. An Isp of 19,436 s and thrust of 3812 N s/pulse, along with nearly doubling the predicted payload mass fraction, warrants further development of enabling technologies.

  5. Electrolysis Propulsion for Spacecraft Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    deGroot, Wim A.; Arrington, Lynn A.; McElroy, James F.; Mitlitsky, Fred; Weisberg, Andrew H.; Carter, Preston H., II; Myers, Blake; Reed, Brian D.

    1997-01-01

    Electrolysis propulsion has been recognized over the last several decades as a viable option to meet many satellite and spacecraft propulsion requirements. This technology, however, was never used for in-space missions. In the same time frame, water based fuel cells have flown in a number of missions. These systems have many components similar to electrolysis propulsion systems. Recent advances in component technology include: lightweight tankage, water vapor feed electrolysis, fuel cell technology, and thrust chamber materials for propulsion. Taken together, these developments make propulsion and/or power using electrolysis/fuel cell technology very attractive as separate or integrated systems. A water electrolysis propulsion testbed was constructed and tested in a joint NASA/Hamilton Standard/Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories program to demonstrate these technology developments for propulsion. The results from these testbed experiments using a I-N thruster are presented. A concept to integrate a propulsion system and a fuel cell system into a unitized spacecraft propulsion and power system is outlined.

  6. Laser space propulsion overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phipps, Claude; Luke, James; Helgeson, Wesley

    2007-03-01

    In this paper, we review the history of laser space propulsion from its earliest theoretical conceptions to modern practical applicatons. Applications begin with the "Lightcraft" flights of Myrabo and include practical thrusters for satellites now completing development as well as proposals for space debris removal and direct launch of payloads into orbit. We consider laser space propulsion in the most general sense, in which laser radiation is used to propel a vehicle in space. In this sense, the topic includes early proposals for pure photon propulsion, laser ablation propulsion, as well as propulsion using lasers to detonate a gas, expel a liquid, heat and expel a gas, or even to propagate power to a remote conventional electric thruster. We also discuss the most recent advances in LSP. For the first time, it is possible to consider space propulsion engines which exhibit thrust of one to several newtons while simultaneously delivering 3,000 seconds, or greater, specific impulse. No other engine concept can do both in a compact format. These willl use onboard, rather than remote, lasers. We will review the concept of chemically augmented electric propulsion, which can provide overall thrust efficiency greater than unity while maintaining very low mass to power ratio, high mean time to failure and broad operating range. The main advantage of LSP is exhaust velocity which can be instantaneously varied from 2km/s to 30km/s, simply by varying laser pulsewidth and focal spot size on target. The laser element will probably be a diode-pumped, fiber master-oscillator-power-amplifier (MOPA) system. Liquid fuels are necessary for volumetric efficiency and reliable performance at the multi-kW optical power levels required for multi-N thrust.

  7. Propulsion IVHM Technology Experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chicatelli, Amy K.; Maul, William A.; Fulton, Christopher E.

    2006-01-01

    The Propulsion IVHM Technology Experiment (PITEX) successfully demonstrated real-time fault detection and isolation of a virtual reusable launch vehicle (RLV) main propulsion system (MPS). Specifically, the PITEX research project developed and applied a model-based diagnostic system for the MPS of the X-34 RLV, a space-launch technology demonstrator. The demonstration was simulation-based using detailed models of the propulsion subsystem to generate nominal and failure scenarios during captive carry, which is the most safety-critical portion of the X-34 flight. Since no system-level testing of the X-34 Main Propulsion System (MPS) was performed, these simulated data were used to verify and validate the software system. Advanced diagnostic and signal processing algorithms were developed and tested in real time on flight-like hardware. In an attempt to expose potential performance problems, the PITEX diagnostic system was subjected to numerous realistic effects in the simulated data including noise, sensor resolution, command/valve talkback information, and nominal build variations. In all cases, the PITEX system performed as required. The research demonstrated potential benefits of model-based diagnostics, defined performance metrics required to evaluate the diagnostic system, and studied the impact of real-world challenges encountered when monitoring propulsion subsystems.

  8. Nuclear concepts/propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miller, Thomas J.

    1993-01-01

    Nuclear thermal and nuclear electric propulsion systems will enable and/or enhance important space exploration missions to the moon and Mars. Current efforts are addressing certain research areas, although NASA and DOE still have much work yet to do. Relative to chemical systems, nuclear thermal propulsion offers the potential of reduced vehicle weight, wider launch windows. and shorter transit times, even without aerobrakes. This would improve crew safety by reducing their exposure to cosmic radiation. Advanced materials and structures will be an important resource in responding to the challenges posed by safety and test facility requirements, environmental concerns, high temperature fuels and the high radiation, hot hydrogen environment within nuclear thermal propulsion systems. Nuclear electric propulsion (NEP) has its own distinct set of advantages relative to chemical systems. These include low resupply mass, the availability of large amounts of onboard electric power for other uses besides propulsion, improved launch windows, and the ability to share technology with surface power systems. Development efforts for NEP reactors will emphasize long life operation of compact designs. This will require designs that provide high fuel burnup and high temperature operation along with personnel and environmental safety.

  9. Plasma confinement to enhance the momentum coupling coefficient in ablative laser micro-propulsion: a novel approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmad, Muhammad Raza; Jamil, Yasir; Qaiser Zakaria, M.; Hussain, Tousif; Ahmad, Riaz

    2015-07-01

    We introduce for the first time the novel idea of manipulating the momentum coupling coefficient using plasma confinement and shock wave reflection from the cavity walls. The plasma was confined using cylindrical geometries of various cavity aspect ratios to manipulate the momentum coupling coefficient (C m ). The Nd: YAG laser (532 nm, 5 ns pulse duration) was focused on the ferrite sample surface to produce plasma in a region surrounded by cylindrical cavity walls. The multiple reflections of the shockwaves from the cavity walls confined the laser-induced plasma to the central region of the cavity that subsequently resulted in a significant enhancement of the momentum coupling coefficient values. The plasma shielding effect has also been observed for particular values of laser fluencies and cavity aspect ratios. Compared with the direct ablation, the confined ablation provides an effective way to obtain high C m values.

  10. An experimental study of laser-supported plasmas for laser propulsion: Center director's discretionary fund project DFP-82-33

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eskridge, R. H.; Mccay, T. D.; Vanzandt, D. M.

    1987-01-01

    The rudiments of a rocket thruster, which receives its enthalpy from an energy source which is remotely beamed from a laser, is described. An experimental study, now partially complete, is discussed which will eventually provide a detailed understanding of the physics for assessing the feasibility of using hydrogen plasmas for accepting and converting this energy to enthalpy. A plasma ignition scheme which uses a pulsed CO2 laser was develped and the properites of the ignition spark documented, including breakdown intensities in hydrogen. A complete diagnostic system capable of determining plasma temperature and the plasma absorptivitiy for subsequent steady-state absorption of a high power CO2 laser beam are developed and demonstrative use is discussed for the preliminary case study, a two atmosphere laser supported argon plasma.

  11. Nuclear gas core propulsion research program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Diaz, Nils J.; Dugan, Edward T.; Anghaie, Samim

    1993-01-01

    Viewgraphs on the nuclear gas core propulsion research program are presented. The objectives of this research are to develop models and experiments, systems, and fuel elements for advanced nuclear thermal propulsion rockets. The fuel elements under investigation are suitable for gas/vapor and multiphase fuel reactors. Topics covered include advanced nuclear propulsion studies, nuclear vapor thermal rocket (NVTR) studies, and ultrahigh temperature nuclear fuels and materials studies.

  12. Advanced Development of a Compact 5-15 lbf Lox/Methane Thruster for an Integrated Reaction Control and Main Engine Propulsion System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hurlbert, Eric A.; McManamen, John Patrick; Sooknanen, Josh; Studak, Joseph W.

    2011-01-01

    This paper describes the advanced development and testing of a compact 5 to 15 lbf LOX/LCH4 thruster for a pressure-fed integrated main engine and RCS propulsion system to be used on a spacecraft "vertical" test bed (VTB). The ability of the RCS thruster and the main engine to operate off the same propellant supply in zero-g reduces mass and improves mission flexibility. This compact RCS engine incorporates several features to dramatically reduce mass and parts count, to ease manufacturing, and to maintain acceptable performance given that specific impulse (Isp) is not the driver. For example, radial injection holes placed on the chamber body for easier drilling, and high temperature Haynes 230 were selected for the chamber over other more expensive options. The valve inlets are rotatable before welding allowing different orientations for vehicle integration. In addition, the engine design effort selected a coil-on-plug ignition system which integrates a relay and coil with the plug electrode, and moves some exciter electronics to avionics driver board. The engine injector design has small dribble volumes to target minimum pulse widths of 20 msec. and an efficient minimum impulse bit of less than 0.05 lbf-sec. The propellants, oxygen and methane, were chosen because together they are a non-toxic, Mars-forward, high density, space storable, and high performance propellant combination that is capable of pressure-fed and pump-fed configurations and integration with life support and power subsystems. This paper will present the results of the advanced development testing to date of the RCS thruster and the integration with a vehicle propulsion system.

  13. Influence of Dupree diffusivity on the occurrence scattering time advance in turbulent plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Myoung-Jae; Jung, Young-Dae

    2015-12-15

    The influence of Dupree diffusivity on the occurrence scattering time advance for the electron-ion collision is investigated in turbulent plasmas. The second-order eikonal method and the effective Dupree potential term associated with the plasma turbulence are employed to obtain the occurrence scattering time as a function of the diffusion coefficient, impact parameter, collision energy, thermal energy, and Debye length. The result shows that the occurrence scattering time advance decreases with an increase of the Dupree diffusivity. Hence, we have found that the influence of plasma turbulence diminishes the occurrence time advance in forward electron-ion collisions in thermal turbulent plasmas. The occurrence time advance shows that the propensity of the occurrence time advance increases with increasing scattering angle. It is also found that the effect of turbulence due to the Dupree diffusivity on the occurrence scattering time advance decreases with an increase of the thermal energy. In addition, the variation of the plasma turbulence on the occurrence scattering time advance due to the plasma parameters is also discussed.

  14. Enabling Electric Propulsion for Flight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ginn, Starr Renee

    2015-01-01

    Team Seedling project AFRC and LaRC 31ft distributed electric propulsion wing on truck bed up 75 miles per hour for coefficient of lift validation. Convergent Aeronautic Solutions project, sub-project Convergent Electric Propulsion Technologies AFRC, LaRC and GRC, re-winging a 4 passenger Tecnam aircraft with a 31ft distributed electric propulsion wing. Advanced Air Transport Technologies (Fixed Wing), Hybrid Electric Research Theme, developing a series hybrid ironbird and flight sim to study integration and performance challenges in preparation for a 1-2 MW flight project.

  15. Enabling Electric Propulsion for Flight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ginn, Starr

    2014-01-01

    Description of current ARMD projects; Team Seedling project AFRC and LaRC 31ft distributed electric propulsion wing on truck bed up 75 miles per hour for coefficient of lift validation. Convergent Aeronautic Solutions project (new ARMD reorg), sub-project Convergent Electric Propulsion Technologies AFRC, LaRC and GRC, re-winging a 4 passenger Tecnam aircraft with a 31ft distributed electric propulsion wing. Advanced Air Transport Technologies (Fixed Wing), Hybrid Electric Research Theme, developing a series hybrid ironbird and flight sim to study integration and performance challenges in preparation for a 1-2 MW flight project.

  16. Z-Pinch Fusion Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miernik, Janie

    2011-01-01

    Fusion-based nuclear propulsion has the potential to enable fast interplanetary transportation. Shorter trips are better for humans in the harmful radiation environment of deep space. Nuclear propulsion and power plants can enable high Ispand payload mass fractions because they require less fuel mass. Fusion energy research has characterized the Z-Pinch dense plasma focus method. (1) Lightning is form of pinched plasma electrical discharge phenomena. (2) Wire array Z-Pinch experiments are commonly studied and nuclear power plant configurations have been proposed. (3) Used in the field of Nuclear Weapons Effects (NWE) testing in the defense industry, nuclear weapon x-rays are simulated through Z-Pinch phenomena.

  17. Current-voltage characteristics of a cathodic plasma contactor with discharge chamber for application in electrodynamic tether propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Kan; Martinez, Rafael A.; Williams, John D.

    2014-04-01

    This paper focuses on the net electron-emission current as a function of bias voltage of a plasma source that is being used as the cathodic element in a bare electrodynamic tether system. An analysis is made that enables an understanding of the basic issues determining the current-voltage (C-V) behaviour. This is important for the efficiency of the electrodynamic tether and for low impedance performance without relying on the properties of space plasma for varying orbital altitudes, inclinations, day-night cycles or the position of the plasma contactor relative to the wake of the spacecraft. The cathodic plasma contactor considered has a cylindrical discharge chamber (10 cm in diameter and ˜11 cm in length) and is driven by a hollow cathode. Experiments and a 1D spherical model are both used to study the contactor's C-V curves. The experiments demonstrate how the cathodic contactor would emit electrons into space for anode voltages in the range of 25-40 V, discharge currents in the range of 1-2.5 A, and low xenon gas flows of 2-4 sccm. Plasma properties are measured and compared with (3 A) and without net electron emission. A study of the dependence of relevant parameters found that the C-V behaviour strongly depends on electron temperature, initial ion energy and ion emission current at the contactor exit. However, it depended only weakly on ambient plasma density. The error in the developed model compared with the experimental C-V curves is within 5% at low electron-emission currents (0-2 A). The external ionization processes and high ion production rate caused by the discharge chamber, which dominate the C-V behaviour at electron-emission currents over 2 A, are further highlighted and discussed.

  18. Space and transatmospheric propulsion technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merkle, Charles; Stangeland, Maynard L.; Brown, James R.; McCarty, John P.; Povinelli, Louis A.; Northam, G. Burton; Zukoski, Edward E.

    1994-03-01

    This report focuses primarily on Japan's programs in liquid rocket propulsion and propulsion for spaceplane and related transatmospheric areas. It refers briefly to Japan's solid rocket programs and to new supersonic air-breathing propulsion efforts. The panel observed that the Japanese had a carefully thought-out plan, a broad-based program, and an ambitious but achievable schedule for propulsion activity. Japan's overall propulsion program is behind that of the United States at the time of this study, but the Japanese are gaining rapidly. The Japanese are at the forefront in such key areas as advanced materials, enjoying a high level of project continuity and funding. Japan's space program has been evolutionary in nature, while the U.S. program has emphasized revolutionary advances. Projects have typically been smaller in Japan than in the United States, focusing on incremental advances in technology, with an excellent record of applying proven technology to new projects. This evolutionary approach, coupled with an ability to take technology off the shelf from other countries, has resulted in relatively low development costs, rapid progress, and enhanced reliability. Clearly Japan is positioned to be a world leader in space and transatmospheric propulsion technology by the year 2000.

  19. Space and transatmospheric propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Merkle, Charles; Stangeland, Maynard L.; Brown, James R.; Mccarty, John P.; Povinelli, Louis A.; Northam, G. Burton; Zukoski, Edward E.

    1994-01-01

    This report focuses primarily on Japan's programs in liquid rocket propulsion and propulsion for spaceplane and related transatmospheric areas. It refers briefly to Japan's solid rocket programs and to new supersonic air-breathing propulsion efforts. The panel observed that the Japanese had a carefully thought-out plan, a broad-based program, and an ambitious but achievable schedule for propulsion activity. Japan's overall propulsion program is behind that of the United States at the time of this study, but the Japanese are gaining rapidly. The Japanese are at the forefront in such key areas as advanced materials, enjoying a high level of project continuity and funding. Japan's space program has been evolutionary in nature, while the U.S. program has emphasized revolutionary advances. Projects have typically been smaller in Japan than in the United States, focusing on incremental advances in technology, with an excellent record of applying proven technology to new projects. This evolutionary approach, coupled with an ability to take technology off the shelf from other countries, has resulted in relatively low development costs, rapid progress, and enhanced reliability. Clearly Japan is positioned to be a world leader in space and transatmospheric propulsion technology by the year 2000.

  20. Solar Electric Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    LaPointe, Michael

    2006-01-01

    The Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP) technology area is tasked to develop near and mid-term SEP technology to improve or enable science mission capture while minimizing risk and cost to the end user. The solar electric propulsion investments are primarily driven by SMD cost-capped mission needs. The technology needs are determined partially through systems analysis tasks including the recent "Re-focus Studies" and "Standard Architecture Study." These systems analysis tasks transitioned the technology development to address the near term propulsion needs suitable for cost-capped open solicited missions such as Discovery and New Frontiers Class missions. Major SEP activities include NASA's Evolutionary Xenon Thruster (NEXT), implementing a Standard Architecture for NSTAR and NEXT EP systems, and developing a long life High Voltage Hall Accelerator (HiVHAC). Lower level investments include advanced feed system development and xenon recovery testing. Future plans include completion of ongoing ISP development activities and evaluating potential use of commercial electric propulsion systems for SMD applications. Examples of enhanced mission capability and technology readiness dates shall be discussed.

  1. Electromagnetic propulsion for spacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, Roger M.

    1993-01-01

    Three electromagnetic propulsion technologies, solid propellant pulsed plasma thrusters (PPT), magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) thrusters, and pulsed inductive thrusters (PIT) have been developed for application to auxiliary and primary spacecraft propulsion. Both the PPT and MPD thrusters have been flown in space, though only PPTs have been used on operational satellites. The performance of operational PPTs is quite poor, providing only about 8 percent efficiency at about 1000 sec specific impulse. Laboratory PPTs yielding 34 percent efficiency at 5170 sec specific impulse have been demonstrated. Laboratory MPD thrusters have been demonstrated with up to 70 percent efficiency and 7000 sec specific impulse. Recent PIT performance measurements using ammonia and hydrazine propellants are extremely encouraging, reaching 50 percent efficiency for specific impulses between 4000 and 8000 sec.

  2. NASA Glenn Research Center's Hypersonic Propulsion Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Palac, Donald T.

    1999-01-01

    NASA Glenn Research Center (GRC), as NASA's lead center for aeropropulsion, is responding to the challenge of reducing the cost of space transportation through the integration of air-breathing propulsion into launch vehicles. Air- breathing launch vehicle (ABLV) propulsion requires a marked departure from traditional propulsion applications. and stretches the technology of both rocket and air-breathing propulsion. In addition, the demands of the space launch mission require an unprecedented level of integration of propulsion and vehicle systems. GRC is responding with a program with rocket-based combined cycle (RBCC) propulsion technology as its main focus. RBCC offers the potential for simplicity, robustness, and performance that may enable low-cost single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) transportation. Other technologies, notably turbine-based combined cycle (TBCC) propulsion, offer benefits such as increased robustness and greater mission flexibility, and are being advanced, at a slower pace, as part of GRC's program in hypersonics.

  3. Advances and problems in plasma-optical mass-separation

    SciTech Connect

    Bardakov, V. M.; Ivanov, S. D.; Strokin, N. A.

    2014-03-15

    This paper presents a short review of plasma-optical mass-separation and defines the fields for its possible application. During theoretical studies, numerical simulations, and experiments, the effect of the azimuthator finite size and of the vacuum conditions on the mass separator characteristics was revealed, as well as the quality of different-mass ion separation. The problems, solving which may lead to a successful end of the mass-separation plasma-optical technique implementation, were specified.

  4. Space dusty plasmas: recent developments, advances, and unsolved problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popel, Sergey; Zelenyi, Lev

    2016-07-01

    The area of space dusty plasma research is a vibrant subfield of plasma physics that belongs to frontier research in physical sciences. This area is intrinsically interdisciplinary and encompasses astrophysics, planetary science, and atmospheric science. Dusty plasmas are ubiquitous in the universe; examples are proto-planetary and solar nebulae, molecular clouds, supernovae explosions, interplanetary medium, circumsolar rings, and asteroids. Within the solar system, we have planetary rings (e.g., Saturn and Jupiter), Martian atmosphere, cometary tails and comae, dust at the Moon, etc. Dust and dusty plasmas are also found in the vicinity of artificial satellites and space stations. The present review covers the main aspects of the area of space dusty plasma research. Emphasis is given to the description of dusty plasmas at the Moon which is important from the viewpoint of the future lunar missions and lunar observatory. This work was supported in part by the Presidium of the Russian Academy of Sciences (under Fundamental Research Program No. 7, "Experimental and Theoretical Study of the Solar System Objects and Stellar Planet Systems. Transient Explosion Processes in Astrophysics" and the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (Project No. 15-02-05627-a).

  5. Electron Beam Transport in Advanced Plasma Wave Accelerators

    SciTech Connect

    Williams, Ronald L

    2013-01-31

    The primary goal of this grant was to develop a diagnostic for relativistic plasma wave accelerators based on injecting a low energy electron beam (5-50keV) perpendicular to the plasma wave and observing the distortion of the electron beam's cross section due to the plasma wave's electrostatic fields. The amount of distortion would be proportional to the plasma wave amplitude, and is the basis for the diagnostic. The beat-wave scheme for producing plasma waves, using two CO2 laser beam, was modeled using a leap-frog integration scheme to solve the equations of motion. Single electron trajectories and corresponding phase space diagrams were generated in order to study and understand the details of the interaction dynamics. The electron beam was simulated by combining thousands of single electrons, whose initial positions and momenta were selected by random number generators. The model was extended by including the interactions of the electrons with the CO2 laser fields of the beat wave, superimposed with the plasma wave fields. The results of the model were used to guide the design and construction of a small laboratory experiment that may be used to test the diagnostic idea.

  6. Dusty (complex) plasmas: recent developments, advances, and unsolved problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popel, Sergey

    The area of dusty (complex) plasma research is a vibrant subfield of plasma physics that be-longs to frontier research in physical sciences. This area is intrinsically interdisciplinary and encompasses astrophysics, planetary science, atmospheric science, magnetic fusion energy sci-ence, and various applied technologies. The research in dusty plasma started after two major discoveries in very different areas: (1) the discovery by the Voyager 2 spacecraft in 1980 of the radial spokes in Saturn's B ring, and (2) the discovery of the early 80's growth of contaminating dust particles in plasma processing. Dusty plasmas are ubiquitous in the universe; examples are proto-planetary and solar nebulae, molecular clouds, supernovae explosions, interplanetary medium, circumsolar rings, and asteroids. Within the solar system, we have planetary rings (e.g., Saturn and Jupiter), Martian atmosphere, cometary tails and comae, dust clouds on the Moon, etc. Close to the Earth, there are noctilucent clouds and polar mesospheric summer echoes, which are clouds of tiny (charged) ice particles that are formed in the summer polar mesosphere at the altitudes of about 82-95 km. Dust and dusty plasmas are also found in the vicinity of artificial satellites and space stations. Dust also turns out to be common in labo-ratory plasmas, such as in the processing of semiconductors and in tokamaks. In processing plasmas, dust particles are actually grown in the discharge from the reactive gases used to form the plasmas. An example of the relevance of industrial dusty plasmas is the growth of silicon microcrystals for improved solar cells in the future. In fact, nanostructured polymorphous sili-con films provide solar cells with high and time stable efficiency. These nano-materials can also be used for the fabrication of ultra-large-scale integration circuits, display devices, single elec-tron devices, light emitting diodes, laser diodes, and others. In microelectronic industries, dust has to be

  7. Solar Thermal Propulsion Test Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Researchers at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) have designed, fabricated and tested the first solar thermal engine, a non-chemical rocket engine that produces lower thrust but has better thrust efficiency than a chemical combustion engine. MSFC turned to solar thermal propulsion in the early 1990s due to its simplicity, safety, low cost, and commonality with other propulsion systems. Solar thermal propulsion works by acquiring and redirecting solar energy to heat a propellant. This photograph, taken at MSFC's Solar Thermal Propulsion Test Facility, shows a concentrator mirror, a combination of 144 mirrors forming this 18-ft diameter concentrator, and a vacuum chamber that houses the focal point. The 20- by 24-ft heliostat mirror (not shown in this photograph) has a dual-axis control that keeps a reflection of the sunlight on the 18-foot diameter concentrator mirror, which then focuses the sunlight to a 4-in focal point inside the vacuum chamber. The focal point has 10 kilowatts of intense solar power. As part of MSFC's Space Transportation Directorate, the Propulsion Research Center serves as a national resource for research of advanced, revolutionary propulsion technologies. The mission is to move the Nation's capabilities beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of aircraft-like access to Earth-orbit, rapid travel throughout the solar system, and exploration of interstellar space.

  8. Propulsion materials

    SciTech Connect

    Wall, Edward J.; Sullivan, Rogelio A.; Gibbs, Jerry L.

    2008-01-01

    The Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Vehicle Technologies (OVT) is pleased to introduce the FY 2007 Annual Progress Report for the Propulsion Materials Research and Development Program. Together with DOE national laboratories and in partnership with private industry and universities across the United States, the program continues to engage in research and development (R&D) that provides enabling materials technology for fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly commercial and passenger vehicles.

  9. Numerical Propulsion System Simulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Naiman, Cynthia

    2006-01-01

    The NASA Glenn Research Center, in partnership with the aerospace industry, other government agencies, and academia, is leading the effort to develop an advanced multidisciplinary analysis environment for aerospace propulsion systems called the Numerical Propulsion System Simulation (NPSS). NPSS is a framework for performing analysis of complex systems. The initial development of NPSS focused on the analysis and design of airbreathing aircraft engines, but the resulting NPSS framework may be applied to any system, for example: aerospace, rockets, hypersonics, power and propulsion, fuel cells, ground based power, and even human system modeling. NPSS provides increased flexibility for the user, which reduces the total development time and cost. It is currently being extended to support the NASA Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate Fundamental Aeronautics Program and the Advanced Virtual Engine Test Cell (AVETeC). NPSS focuses on the integration of multiple disciplines such as aerodynamics, structure, and heat transfer with numerical zooming on component codes. Zooming is the coupling of analyses at various levels of detail. NPSS development includes capabilities to facilitate collaborative engineering. The NPSS will provide improved tools to develop custom components and to use capability for zooming to higher fidelity codes, coupling to multidiscipline codes, transmitting secure data, and distributing simulations across different platforms. These powerful capabilities extend NPSS from a zero-dimensional simulation tool to a multi-fidelity, multidiscipline system-level simulation tool for the full development life cycle.

  10. Trajectory correction propulsion for TOPS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Long, H. R.; Bjorklund, R. A.

    1972-01-01

    A blowdown-pressurized hydrazine propulsion system was selected to provide trajectory correction impulse for outer planet flyby spacecraft as the result of cost/mass/reliability tradeoff analyses. Present hydrazine component and system technology and component designs were evaluated for application to the Thermoelectric Outer Planet Spacecraft (TOPS); while general hydrazine technology was adequate, component design changes were deemed necessary for TOPS-type missions. A prototype hydrazine propulsion system was fabricated and fired nine times for a total of 1600 s to demonstrate the operation and performance of the TOPS propulsion configuration. A flight-weight trajectory correction propulsion subsystem (TCPS) was designed for the TOPS based on actual and estimated advanced components.

  11. Advances in cooled semen technologies: seminal plasma and semen extender.

    PubMed

    Rigby, S L; Brinsko, S P; Cochran, M; Blanchard, T L; Love, C C; Varner, D D

    2001-12-01

    This study evaluated motility and fertility of uncentrifuged and centrifuged equine semen following dilution in a skim milk-glucose extender with or without supplemental Tyrode's medium. In addition, the effect of seminal plasma addition to each extender was evaluated. For Experiment 1, motility of 48h cooled, stored spermatozoa was evaluated following eight dilution treatments: uncentrifuged and diluted 1:4 (v/v) in skim milk-glucose extender (EZ Mixin CSTJ; CST-1:4) or in CST supplemented 65:35 (v/v) with modified Tyrode's medium (KMT-1:4); uncentrifuged and diluted to 25x10(6) spermatozoa/ml in CST (CST-1:9) or in KMT (KMT-1:9); centrifuged and diluted in CST with 0% seminal plasma (CST-0) or 20% seminal plasma (CST-20) or centrifuged and diluted in KMT containing 0% seminal plasma (KMT-0) or in KMT containing 20% seminal plasma (KMT-20). Sperm motility parameters evaluated included percentage of total motile sperm (% TMOT), percentage of progressively motile sperm (% PMOT), curvilinear velocity (VCL) and straight-line velocity (VSL). Mean % PMOT was lower (P<0.05) for spermatozoa extended in CST-1:4 compared to CST-1:9, whereas, all motility parameters were reduced (P<0.05) in KMT-1:4 compared to KMT-1:9. Spermatozoa extended in CST-1:4 had greater % TMOT, % PMOT and VSL (P<0.05) than in KMT-1:4. Spermatozoa extended in CST-1:9 had greater (P<0.05) % PMOT than in KMT-1:9, however, VCL was greater (P<0.05) in KMT-1:9. Mean VCL and VSL were lower (P<0.05) for spermatozoa extended in CST-0 compared with CST-20, whereas, spermatozoa extended in KMT-0 had greater (P<0.05) % TMOT, % PMOT and VSL compared to spermatozoa extended in KMT-20. Mean % TMOT and % PMOT were greater (P<0.05) in CST-20 compared to KMT-20, however, KMT-0 increased (P<0.05) velocity measures (VCL and VSL) compared to CST-0. In Experiment 2, fertility of centrifuged spermatozoa diluted in either CST-20 or KMT-0 was similar (P>0.05). We conclude that modified Tyrode's medium was not detrimental to

  12. Emergent Propulsion Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Fakdi Sencianes, Andres

    2002-01-01

    almost an Engineer (2002 will be my last year as student) and the studies that I'm now ending here, in Girona, are closely related not only with science and technology subjects but with optimization and economic result obtention, too. Huge distances that separate us from everything in space have launched scientists and engineers into a new challenge: How to reach maximum speeds keeping high ratios payload/total spacecraft mass? The key limitation of chemical rockets is that their exhaust velocity is relatively low. Because achieving Earth orbit requires a high velocity change a rocket must carry far more propellant than payload. The answer to all this complications seems to stare in one way: electric propulsion systems and the possibility of taking advantatge of solar winds to thrust our crafts. possible solutions, some of them have been studied for years and now they are not a project but a reality; also newest theories bring us the possibility of dream. Improve of commom propellants, search of new ones: Investigators continued research on use of atomic species as high-energy-density propellants, which could increase the specific impulse of hydrogen/oxygen rockets by 50-150%. Nuclear fission propulsion: Centered in development of reactors for nearterm nuclear electric propulsion aplications. Multimegawatt systems based on vapor core reactors and magnetohydrodynamic power conversion. Engineers investigated new fuels for compact nuclear thermal propulsion systems. What is called plasma state?: When a gas is heated to tens of thousands or millions of degrees, atoms lose their electrons. The result is a "soup" of charged particles, or plasma, made up of negatively charged electrons and positively charged ions. No known material can contain the hot plasma necessary for rocket propulsion, but specially designed magnetic fields can. Plasma rockets: This rockets are not powered by conventional chemical reactions as today's rockets are, but by electrical energy that heats

  13. Emerging Propulsion Technologies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keys, Andrew S.

    2006-01-01

    The Emerging Propulsion Technologies (EPT) investment area is the newest area within the In-Space Propulsion Technology (ISPT) Project and strives to bridge technologies in the lower Technology Readiness Level (TRL) range (2 to 3) to the mid TRL range (4 to 6). A prioritization process, the Integrated In-Space Transportation Planning (IISTP), was developed and applied in FY01 to establish initial program priorities. The EPT investment area emerged for technologies that scored well in the IISTP but had a low technical maturity level. One particular technology, the Momentum-eXchange Electrodynamic-Reboost (MXER) tether, scored extraordinarily high and had broad applicability in the IISTP. However, its technical maturity was too low for ranking alongside technologies like the ion engine or aerocapture. Thus MXER tethers assumed top priority at EPT startup in FY03 with an aggressive schedule and adequate budget. It was originally envisioned that future technologies would enter the ISP portfolio through EPT, and EPT developed an EPT/ISP Entrance Process for future candidate ISP technologies. EPT has funded the following secondary, candidate ISP technologies at a low level: ultra-lightweight solar sails, general space/near-earth tether development, electrodynamic tether development, advanced electric propulsion, and in-space mechanism development. However, the scope of the ISPT program has focused over time to more closely match SMD needs and technology advancement successes. As a result, the funding for MXER and other EPT technologies is not currently available. Consequently, the MXER tether tasks and other EPT tasks were expected to phased out by November 2006. Presentation slides are presented which provide activity overviews for the aerocapture technology and emerging propulsion technology projects.

  14. Advanced properties of extended plasmas for efficient high-order harmonic generation

    SciTech Connect

    Ganeev, R. A.; Suzuki, M.; Kuroda, H.

    2014-05-15

    We demonstrate the advanced properties of extended plasma plumes (5 mm) for efficient harmonic generation of laser radiation compared with the short lengths of plasmas (∼0.3–0.5 mm) used in previous studies. The harmonic conversion efficiency quadratically increased with the growth of plasma length. The studies of this process along the whole extreme ultraviolet range using the long plasma jets produced on various metal surfaces, particularly including the resonance-enhanced laser frequency conversion and two-color pump, are presented. Such plasmas could be used for the quasi-phase matching experiments by proper modulation of the spatial characteristics of extended ablating area and formation of separated plasma jets.

  15. An Overview of Electric Propulsion Activities at NASA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dunning, John W., Jr.; Hamley, John A.; Jankovsky, Robert S.; Oleson, Steven R.

    2004-01-01

    This paper provides an overview of NASA s activities in the area of electric propulsion with an emphasis on project directions, recent progress, and a view of future project directions. The goals of the electric propulsion programs are to develop key technologies to enable new and ambitious science missions and to transfer these technologies to industry. Activities include the development of gridded ion thruster technology, Hall thruster technology, pulsed plasma thruster technology, and very high power electric propulsion technology, as well as systems technology that supports practical implementation of these advanced concepts. The performance of clusters of ion and Hall thrusters is being revisited. Mission analyses, based on science requirements and preliminary mission specifications, guide the technology projects and introduce mission planners to new capabilities. Significant in-house activity, with strong industrial/academia participation via contracts and grants, is maintained to address these development efforts. NASA has initiated a program covering nuclear powered spacecraft that includes both reactor and radioisotope power sources. This has provided an impetus to investigate higher power and higher specific impulse thruster systems. NASA continues to work closely with both supplier and user communities to maximize the understanding and acceptance of new technology in a timely and cost-effective manner. NASA s electric propulsion efforts are closely coordinated with Department of Defense and other national programs to assure the most effective use of available resources. Several NASA Centers are actively involved in these electric propulsion activities, including, the Glenn Research Center, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Johnson Space Center, and Marshall Space Flight Center.

  16. Free radical propulsion concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hawkins, C. E.; Nakanishi, S.

    1981-01-01

    The concept of a free radical propulsion system, utilizing the recombination energy of dissociated low molecular weight gases to produce thrust, is analyzed. The system, operating at a theoretical impulse with hydrogen, as high as 2200 seconds at high thrust to power ratio, is hypothesized to bridge the gap between chemical and electrostatic propulsion capabilities. A comparative methodology is outlined by which characteristics of chemical and electric propulsion for orbit raising mission can be investigated. It is noted that free radicals proposed in rockets previously met with difficulty and complexity in terms of storage requirements; the present study proposes to eliminate the storage requirements by using electric energy to achieve a continuous-flow product of free radicals which are recombined to produce a high velocity propellant. Microwave energy used to dissociate a continuously flowing gas is transferred to the propellant via three-body-recombination for conversion to propellant kinetic energy. Microwave plasma discharge was found in excess of 90 percent over a broad range of pressure in preliminary experiments, and microwave heating compared to electrothermal heating showed much higher temperatures in gasdynamic equations.

  17. NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology Program: Overview and Status

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Les; Alexander, Leslie; Baggett, Randy; Bonometti, Joe; Herrmann, Melody; James, Bonnie; Montgomery, Sandy

    2004-01-01

    NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology Program is investing in technologies that have the potential to revolutionize the robotic exploration of deep space. For robotic exploration and science missions, increased efficiencies of future propulsion systems are critical to reduce overall life-cycle costs and, in some cases, enable missions previously considered impossible. Continued reliance on conventional chemical propulsion alone will not enable the robust exploration of deep space - the maximum theoretical efficiencies have almost been reached and they are insufficient to meet needs for many ambitious science missions currently being considered. The In-Space Propulsion Technology Program s technology portfolio includes many advanced propulsion systems. From the next generation ion propulsion system operating in the 5 - 10 kW range, to advanced cryogenic propulsion, substantial advances in spacecraft propulsion performance are anticipated. Some of the most promising technologies for achieving these goals use the environment of space itself for energy and propulsion and are generically called, 'propellantless' because they do not require onboard fuel to achieve thrust. Propellantless propulsion technologies include scientific innovations such as solar sails, electrodynamic and momentum transfer tethers, aeroassist, and aerocapture. This paper will provide an overview of both propellantless and propellant-based advanced propulsion technologies, and NASA s plans for advancing them as part of the $60M per year In-Space Propulsion Technology Program.

  18. Space Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (SNTP) tests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allen, George C.

    1993-01-01

    Viewgraphs on the space nuclear thermal propulsion (SNTP) program are presented. The objective of the research is to develop advanced nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP) technology based on the particle bed reactor concept. A strong philosophical commitment exists in the industry/national laboratory team to emphasize testing in development activities. Nuclear testing currently underway to support development of SNTP technology is addressed.

  19. NASA Technology Area 1: Launch Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McConnaughey, Paul; Femminineo, Mark; Koelfgen, Syri; Lepsch, Roger; Ryan, Richard M.; Taylor, Steven A.

    2011-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the technology advancements plans for the NASA Technology Area 1, Launch Propulsion Systems Technology Area (LPSTA). The draft roadmap reviews various propulsion system technologies that will be developed during the next 25 + years. This roadmap will be reviewed by the National Research Council which will issue a final report, that will include findings and recommendations.

  20. Propulsion Technology Needs for Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, Thomas

    2007-01-01

    The objectives of currently planned exploration efforts, as well as those further in the future, require significant advancements in propulsion technologies. The current Lunar exploration architecture has set goals and mission objectives that necessitate the use of new systems and the extension of existing technologies beyond present applications. In the near term, the majority of these technologies are the result of a need to apply high performing cryogenic propulsion systems to long duration in-space applications. Advancement of cryogenic propulsion to these applications is crucial to provide higher performing propulsion systems that reduce the vehicle masses; enhance the safety of vehicle systems and ground operations; and provide a path for In-situ Resource Utilization (ISRU).Use of a LOX/LH2 main propulsion system for Lunar Lander Descent is a top priority because more conventional storable propellants are far from meeting the performance needs of the current architecture. While LOX/LH2 pump feed engines have been used in flight applications for many years, these engines have limited throttle capabilities. Engines that are capable of much greater throttling while still meeting high performance goals are a necessity to achieving exploration goals. Applications of LOX/CH4 propulsion to Lander ascent propulsion systems and reaction control systems are also if interest because of desirable performance and operations improvements over conventional storable systems while being more suitable for use of in-situ produced propellants. Within the current lunar architecture, use of cryogenic propulsion for the Earth Departure Stage and Lunar Lander elements also necessitate the need for advanced Cryogenic Fluid Management technologies. These technologies include long duration propellant storage/distribution, low-gravity propellant management, cryogenic couplings and disconnects, light weight composite tanks and support structure, and subsystem integration. In addition to

  1. Advanced modeling techniques in application to plasma pulse treatment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pashchenko, A. F.; Pashchenko, F. F.

    2016-06-01

    Different approaches considered for simulation of plasma pulse treatment process. The assumption of a significant non-linearity of processes in the treatment of oil wells has been confirmed. Method of functional transformations and fuzzy logic methods suggested for construction of a mathematical model. It is shown, that models, based on fuzzy logic are able to provide a satisfactory accuracy of simulation and prediction of non-linear processes observed.

  2. Green space propulsion: Opportunities and prospects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gohardani, Amir S.; Stanojev, Johann; Demairé, Alain; Anflo, Kjell; Persson, Mathias; Wingborg, Niklas; Nilsson, Christer

    2014-11-01

    Currently, toxic and carcinogenic hydrazine propellants are commonly used in spacecraft propulsion. These propellants impose distinctive environmental challenges and consequential hazardous conditions. With an increasing level of future space activities and applications, the significance of greener space propulsion becomes even more pronounced. In this article, a selected number of promising green space propellants are reviewed and investigated for various space missions. In-depth system studies in relation to the aforementioned propulsion architectures further unveil possible approaches for advanced green propulsion systems of the future.

  3. Explosive propulsion applications. [to future unmanned missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nakamura, Y.; Varsi, G.; Back, L. H.

    1974-01-01

    The feasibility and application of an explosive propulsion concept capable of supporting future unmanned missions in the post-1980 era were examined and recommendations made for advanced technology development tasks. The Venus large lander mission was selected as the first in which the explosive propulsion concept can find application. A conceptual design was generated and its performance, weight, costs, and interaction effects determined. Comparisons were made with conventional propulsion alternatives. The feasibility of the explosive propulsion system was verified for planetology experiments within the dense atmosphere of Venus as well as the outer planets. Additionally, it was determined that the Venus large lander mission could be augmented ballistically with a significant delivery margin.

  4. Conceptual Design of a Z-Pinch Fusion Propulsion System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adams, Robert; Polsgrove, Tara; Fincher, Sharon; Fabinski, Leo; Maples, Charlotte; Miernik, Janie; Stratham, Geoffrey; Cassibry, Jason; Cortez, Ross; Turner, Matthew; Santarius, John; Percy, Thomas

    2010-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews a project that aims to develop a conceptual design for a Z-pinch thruster, that could be applied to develop advanced thruster designs which promise high thrust/high specific impulse propulsion. Overviews shows the concept of the design, which use annular nozzles with deuterium-tritium (D-T) fuel and a Lithium mixture as a cathode, Charts show the engine performance as a function of linear mass, nozzle performance (i.e., plasma segment trajectories), and mission analysis for possible Mars and Jupiter missions using this concept for propulsion. Slides show views of the concepts for the vehicle configuration, thrust coil configuration, the power management system, the structural analysis of the magnetic nozzle, the thermal management system, and the avionics suite,

  5. Solar Thermal Propulsion Test Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Researchers at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) have designed, fabricated, and tested the first solar thermal engine, a non-chemical rocket engine that produces lower thrust but has better thrust efficiency than a chemical combustion engine. MSFC turned to solar thermal propulsion in the early 1990s due to its simplicity, safety, low cost, and commonality with other propulsion systems. Solar thermal propulsion works by acquiring and redirecting solar energy to heat a propellant. This photograph shows a fully assembled solar thermal engine placed inside the vacuum chamber at the test facility prior to testing. The 20- by 24-ft heliostat mirror (not shown in this photograph) has a dual-axis control that keeps a reflection of the sunlight on the 18-ft diameter concentrator mirror, which then focuses the sunlight to a 4-in focal point inside the vacuum chamber. The focal point has 10 kilowatts of intense solar power. As part of MSFC's Space Transportation Directorate, the Propulsion Research Center serves as a national resource for research of advanced, revolutionary propulsion technologies. The mission is to move theNation's capabilities beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of aircraft-like access to Earth orbit, rapid travel throughout the solar system, and exploration of interstellar space.

  6. Components of the Solar Thermal Propulsion Engine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1997-01-01

    Researchers at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) have designed, fabricated, and tested the first solar thermal engine, a non-chemical rocket engine that produces lower thrust but has better thrust efficiency than a chemical combustion engine. This photograph shows components for the thermal propulsion engine being laid out prior to assembly. MSFC turned to solar thermal propulsion in the early 1990s due to its simplicity, safety, low cost, and commonality with other propulsion systems. As part of MSFC's Space Transportation Directorate, the Propulsion Research Center serves as a national resource for research of advanced, revolutionary propulsion technologies. The mission is to move the Nation's capabilities beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of aircraft-like access to Earth-orbit, rapid travel throughout the solar system, and exploration of interstellar space.

  7. Electric vehicle propulsion alternatives

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Secunde, R. R.; Schuh, R. M.; Beach, R. F.

    1983-01-01

    Propulsion technology development for electric vehicles is summarized. Analytical studies, technology evaluation, and the development of technology for motors, controllers, transmissions, and complete propulsion systems are included.

  8. Low Thrust Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    This video presents an overview of low thrust rocket engine propulsion concepts for space missions. Chemical and electrical rocket engines are shown. Animation illustrates various propulsion applications.

  9. Gasdynamic Mirror (GDM) Fusion Propulsion Engine Experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    The Gasdynamic Mirror, or GDM, is an example of a magnetic mirror-based fusion propulsion system. Its design is primarily consisting of a long slender solenoid surrounding a vacuum chamber that contains plasma. The bulk of the fusion plasma is confined by magnetic field generated by a series of toroidal-shaped magnets in the center section of the device. the purpose of the GDM Fusion Propulsion Experiment is to confirm the feasibility of the concept and to demonstrate many of the operational characteristics of a full-size plasma can be confined within the desired physical configuration and still reman stable. This image shows an engineer from Propulsion Research Technologies Division at Marshall Space Flight Center inspecting solenoid magnets-A, an integrate part of the Gasdynamic Mirror Fusion Propulsion Engine Experiment.

  10. High Power Electric Propulsion for Deep Space Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Polk, Jay

    2011-01-01

    Slide presentation reviews: (1) An Electric Propulsion Primer (2) The Flexible Path and the Electric Path (2a) A New Plan for Human Exploration (2b)The Role of Electric Propulsion (3) High Power Electric Thrusters (3a)Hall Thrusters (3b) Magnetoplasmadynamic Thrusters (4)Challenges for the Next Generation of Advanced Propulsion Technologist

  11. Analysis of line integrated electron density using plasma position data on Korea Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research

    SciTech Connect

    Nam, Y. U.; Chung, J.

    2010-10-15

    A 280 GHz single-channel horizontal millimeter-wave interferometer system has been installed for plasma electron density measurements on the Korea Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research (KSTAR) device. This system has a triangular beam path that does not pass through the plasma axis due to geometrical constraints in the superconducting tokamak. The term line density on KSTAR has a different meaning from the line density of other tokamaks. To estimate the peak density and the mean density from the measured line density, information on the position of the plasma is needed. The information has been calculated from tangentially viewed visible images using the toroidal symmetry of the plasma. Interface definition language routines have been developed for this purpose. The calculated plasma position data correspond well to calculation results from magnetic analysis. With the position data and an estimated plasma profile, the peak density and the mean density have been obtained from the line density. From these results, changes of plasma density themselves can be separated from effects of the plasma movements, so they can give valuable information on the plasma status.

  12. FIRE, A Test Bed for ARIES-RS/AT Advanced Physics and Plasma Technology

    SciTech Connect

    Dale M. Meade

    2004-10-21

    The overall vision for FIRE [Fusion Ignition Research Experiment] is to develop and test the fusion plasma physics and plasma technologies needed to realize capabilities of the ARIES-RS/AT power plant designs. The mission of FIRE is to attain, explore, understand and optimize a fusion dominated plasma which would be satisfied by producing D-T [deuterium-tritium] fusion plasmas with nominal fusion gains {approx}10, self-driven currents of {approx}80%, fusion power {approx}150-300 MW, and pulse lengths up to 40 s. Achieving these goals will require the deployment of several key fusion technologies under conditions approaching those of ARIES-RS/AT. The FIRE plasma configuration with strong plasma shaping, a double null pumped divertor and all metal plasma-facing components is a 40% scale model of the ARIES-RS/AT plasma configuration. ''Steady-state'' advanced tokamak modes in FIRE with high beta, high bootstrap fraction, and 100% noninductive current drive are suitable for testing the physics of the ARIES-RS/A T operating modes. The development of techniques to handle power plant relevant exhaust power while maintaining low tritium inventory is a major objective for a burning plasma experiment. The FIRE high-confinement modes and AT-modes result in fusion power densities from 3-10 MWm{sup -3} and neutron wall loading from 2-4 MWm{sup -2} which are at the levels expected from the ARIES-RS/AT design studies.

  13. Pulsed Plasma Thruster

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Dr. Tom Markusic, a propulsion research engineer at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC), adjusts a diagnostic laser while a pulsed plasma thruster (PPT) fires in a vacuum chamber in the background. NASA/MSFC's Propulsion Research Center (PRC) is presently investigating plasma propulsion for potential use on future nuclear-powered spacecraft missions, such as human exploration of Mars.

  14. NASA Propulsion Engineering Research Center, volume 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    On 8-9 Sep. 1993, the Propulsion Engineering Research Center (PERC) at The Pennsylvania State University held its Fifth Annual Symposium. PERC was initiated in 1988 by a grant from the NASA Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology as a part of the University Space Engineering Research Center (USERC) program; the purpose of the USERC program is to replenish and enhance the capabilities of our Nation's engineering community to meet its future space technology needs. The Centers are designed to advance the state-of-the-art in key space-related engineering disciplines and to promote and support engineering education for the next generation of engineers for the national space program and related commercial space endeavors. Research on the following areas was initiated: liquid, solid, and hybrid chemical propulsion, nuclear propulsion, electrical propulsion, and advanced propulsion concepts.

  15. Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage for Mars Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, M. G.; Borowski, S. K.; George, J. A.; Kim, T.; Emrich, W. J.; Hickman, R. R.; Broadway, J. W.; Gerrish, H. P.; Adams, R. B.

    2012-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) based on NTP could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of the NCPS in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progress made under the NCPS project could help enable both advanced NTP and advanced Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP).

  16. Safe, Affordable, Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, M. G.; Kim, T.; Emrich, W. J.; Hickman, R. R.; Broadway, J. W.; Gerrish, H. P.; Doughty, G. E.

    2014-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) based on NTP could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of the NCPS in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progress made under the NCPS project could help enable both advanced NTP and advanced Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP).

  17. Advances in petascale kinetic plasma simulation with VPIC and Roadrunner

    SciTech Connect

    Bowers, Kevin J; Albright, Brian J; Yin, Lin; Daughton, William S; Roytershteyn, Vadim; Kwan, Thomas J T

    2009-01-01

    VPIC, a first-principles 3d electromagnetic charge-conserving relativistic kinetic particle-in-cell (PIC) code, was recently adapted to run on Los Alamos's Roadrunner, the first supercomputer to break a petaflop (10{sup 15} floating point operations per second) in the TOP500 supercomputer performance rankings. They give a brief overview of the modeling capabilities and optimization techniques used in VPIC and the computational characteristics of petascale supercomputers like Roadrunner. They then discuss three applications enabled by VPIC's unprecedented performance on Roadrunner: modeling laser plasma interaction in upcoming inertial confinement fusion experiments at the National Ignition Facility (NIF), modeling short pulse laser GeV ion acceleration and modeling reconnection in magnetic confinement fusion experiments.

  18. Affordable Development of a Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, M. G.; Borowski, S. K.; George, J. A.; Kim, T.; Emrich, W. J.; Hickman, R. R.; Broadway, J. W.; Gerrish, H. P.; Adams, R. B.

    2012-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) based on NTP could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. The foundation provided by development and utilization of a NCPS could enable development of extremely high performance systems. The role of the NCPS in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progress made under the NCPS project could help enable both advanced NTP and advanced Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP).

  19. Technology Area Roadmap for In Space Propulsion Technologies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Les; Meyer, Mike; Coote, David; Goebel, Dan; Palaszewski, Bryan; White, Sonny

    2010-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the technology area (TA) roadmap to develop propulsion technologies that will be used to enable further exploration of the solar system, and beyond. It is hoped that development of the technologies within this TA will result in technical solutions that will improve thrust levels, specific impulse, power, specific mass, volume, system mass, system complexity, operational complexity, commonality with other spacecraft systems, manufacturability and durability. Some of the propulsion technologies that are reviewed include: chemical and non-chemical propulsion, and advanced propulsion (i.e., those with a Technology Readiness level of less than 3). Examples of these advanced technologies include: Beamed Energy, Electric Sail, Fusion, High Energy Density Materials, Antimatter, Advanced Fission and Breakthrough propulsion technologies. Timeframes for development of some of these propulsion technologies are reviewed, and top technical challenges are reviewed. This roadmap describes a portfolio of in-space propulsion technologies that can meet future space science and exploration needs.

  20. Pulsed Plasma Thruster Technology Development and Flight Demonstration Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peterson, Todd T.; Curran, Frank M.

    1998-01-01

    Because of anticipated near- and far-term mission needs for innovative new electric propulsion technologies, the NASA On-Board Propulsion program is sponsoring NASA Lewis Research Centers' Pulsed Plasma Thruster (PPT) technology development program to rapidly advance PPT technology. This is a joint effort of Lewis' On-Board Propulsion Branch and Space Flight Project Branch. Building on state-of-the-art technology developed and flown in the 1970's and 1980's for Department of Defense missions, newly developed PPT program designs are realizing significant gains in system mass reduction, thrust to mass ratio, total impulse to mass ratio, and variability of impulse bit.

  1. Solar-Powered Electric Propulsion Systems: Engineering and Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stearns, J. W.; Kerrisk, D. J.

    1966-01-01

    Lightweight, multikilowatt solar power arrays in conjunction with electric propulsion offer potential improvements to space exploration, extending the usefulness of existing launch vehicles to higher-energy missions. Characteristics of solar-powered electric propulsion missions are outlined, and preliminary performance estimates are shown. Spacecraft system engineering is discussed with respect to parametric trade-offs in power and propulsion system design. Relationships between mission performance and propulsion system performance are illustrated. The present state of the art of electric propulsion systems is reviewed and related to the mission requirements identified earlier. The propulsion system design and test requirements for a mission spacecraft are identified and discussed. Although only ion engine systems are currently available, certain plasma propulsion systems offer some advantages in over-all system design. These are identified, and goals are set for plasma-thrustor systems to make them competitive with ion-engine systems for mission applications.

  2. Development of Advanced Pellet Injector Systems for Plasma Fueling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakamoto, Ryuichi; Yamada, Hiroshi; LHD Experimental Group

    Two types of solid hydrogen pellet injection systems have been developed, and plasma refueling experiments have been performed using these pellet injectors. One is an in-situ pipe-gun type pellet injector, which has the simplest design of all pellet injectors. This in-situ pipe-gun injector has 10 injection barrels, each of which can independently inject cylindrical solid hydrogen pellets (3.4 and 3.8 mm in diameter and length, respectively) at velocities up to 1,200 m/s. The other is a repetitive pellet injector with a screw extruder, which can form a 3.0 mmφ solid hydrogen rod continuously at extrusion rates up to 55 mm/s. This extruder allows consecutive pellet injection up to 11 Hz without time limit. Both of these pellet injectors employ compact cryo-coolers to solidify hydrogen; therefore, they can be operated using only electrical input instead of a complicated liquid helium supply system. In particular, using a combination of the repetitive pellet injector with cryo-coolers provides a steady-state capability with minimum maintenance.

  3. NASA In-Space Propulsion Technology Program: Overview and Update

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Les; Alexander, Leslie; Baggett, Randy M.; Bonometti, Joseph A.; Herrmann, Melody; James, Bonnie F.; Montgomery, Sandy E.

    2004-01-01

    NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology Program is investing in technologies that have the potential to revolutionize the robotic exploration of deep space. For robotic exploration and science missions, increased efficiencies of future propulsion systems are critical to reduce overall life-cycle costs and, in some cases, enable missions previously considered impossible. Continued reliance on conventional chemical propulsion alone will not enable the robust exploration of deep space - the maximum theoretical efficiencies have almost been reached and they are insufficient to meet needs for many ambitious science missions currently being considered. The In-Space Propulsion Technology Program's technology portfolio includes many advanced propulsion systems. From the next-generation ion propulsion system operating in the 5- to 10-kW range to aerocapture and solar sails, substantial advances in - spacecraft propulsion performance are anticipated. Some of the most promising technologies for achieving these goals use the environment of space itself for energy and propulsion and are generically called 'propellantless' because they do not require onboard fuel to achieve thrust. Propellantless propulsion technologies include scientific innovations such as solar sails, electrodynamic and momentum transfer.tethers, aeroassist and aerocapture. This paper will provide an overview of both propellantless and propellant-based advanced propulsion technologies, as well as NASA's plans for advancing them as part of the In-Space Propulsion Technology Program.

  4. NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology Program: Overview and Update

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Les; Alexander, Leslie; Baggett, Randy M.; Bonometti, Joseph A.; Herrmann, Melody; James, Bonnie F.; Montgomery, Sandy E.

    2004-01-01

    NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology Program is investing in technologies that have the potential to revolutionize the robotic exploration of deep space. For robotic exploration and science missions, increased efficiencies of future propulsion systems are critical to reduce overall life-cycle costs and, in some cases, enable missions previously considered impossible. Continued reliance on conventional chemical propulsion alone will not enable the robust exploration of deep space - the maximum theoretical efficiencies have almost been reached and they are insufficient to meet needs for many ambitious science missions currently being considered. The In-Space Propulsion Technology Program s technology portfolio includes many advanced propulsion systems. From the next-generation ion propulsion system operating in the 5- to 10-kW range to aerocapture and solar sails, substantial advances in spacecraft propulsion performance are anticipated. Some of the most promising technologies for achieving these goals ase the environment of space itself for energy and propulsion and are generically called 'propellantless' because they do not require onboard fuel to achieve thrust. Propellantless propulsion technologies include scientific innovations such as solar sails, electrodynamic and momentum transfer tethers, aeroassist, and aerocapture. This paper will provide an overview of both propellantless and propellant-based advanced propulsion technologies, as well as NASA s plans for advancing them as part of the In-Space Propulsion Technology Program.

  5. AWAKE, The Advanced Proton Driven Plasma Wakefield Acceleration Experiment at CERN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gschwendtner, E.; Adli, E.; Amorim, L.; Apsimon, R.; Assmann, R.; Bachmann, A.-M.; Batsch, F.; Bauche, J.; Berglyd Olsen, V. K.; Bernardini, M.; Bingham, R.; Biskup, B.; Bohl, T.; Bracco, C.; Burrows, P. N.; Burt, G.; Buttenschön, B.; Butterworth, A.; Caldwell, A.; Cascella, M.; Chevallay, E.; Cipiccia, S.; Damerau, H.; Deacon, L.; Dirksen, P.; Doebert, S.; Dorda, U.; Farmer, J.; Fedosseev, V.; Feldbaumer, E.; Fiorito, R.; Fonseca, R.; Friebel, F.; Gorn, A. A.; Grulke, O.; Hansen, J.; Hessler, C.; Hofle, W.; Holloway, J.; Hüther, M.; Jaroszynski, D.; Jensen, L.; Jolly, S.; Joulaei, A.; Kasim, M.; Keeble, F.; Li, Y.; Liu, S.; Lopes, N.; Lotov, K. V.; Mandry, S.; Martorelli, R.; Martyanov, M.; Mazzoni, S.; Mete, O.; Minakov, V. A.; Mitchell, J.; Moody, J.; Muggli, P.; Najmudin, Z.; Norreys, P.; Öz, E.; Pardons, A.; Pepitone, K.; Petrenko, A.; Plyushchev, G.; Pukhov, A.; Rieger, K.; Ruhl, H.; Salveter, F.; Savard, N.; Schmidt, J.; Seryi, A.; Shaposhnikova, E.; Sheng, Z. M.; Sherwood, P.; Silva, L.; Soby, L.; Sosedkin, A. P.; Spitsyn, R. I.; Trines, R.; Tuev, P. V.; Turner, M.; Verzilov, V.; Vieira, J.; Vincke, H.; Wei, Y.; Welsch, C. P.; Wing, M.; Xia, G.; Zhang, H.

    2016-09-01

    The Advanced Proton Driven Plasma Wakefield Acceleration Experiment (AWAKE) aims at studying plasma wakefield generation and electron acceleration driven by proton bunches. It is a proof-of-principle R&D experiment at CERN and the world's first proton driven plasma wakefield acceleration experiment. The AWAKE experiment will be installed in the former CNGS facility and uses the 400 GeV/c proton beam bunches from the SPS. The first experiments will focus on the self-modulation instability of the long (rms ~12 cm) proton bunch in the plasma. These experiments are planned for the end of 2016. Later, in 2017/2018, low energy (~15 MeV) electrons will be externally injected into the sample wakefields and be accelerated beyond 1 GeV. The main goals of the experiment will be summarized. A summary of the AWAKE design and construction status will be presented.

  6. Advanced Functional Thin Films Prepared by Plasma CVD

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takai, Osamu

    1998-10-01

    Recently water repellency has been required for many types of substrate (e.g. glass, plastics, fibers, ceramics and metals) in various industrial fields. This paper reports on the preparation of highly water-repellent thin films by plasma CVD (PCVD). We have prepared transparent water-repellent thin films at low substrate temperatures by two types of PCVD, rf PCVD and microwave PCVD, using fluoro-alkyl silanes (FASs) as source gases. Silicon oxide thin films contained fluoro-alkyl functions were deposited onto glass and plastics, and realized the excellent water repellency like polytetrafluoroetylene (PTFE) and the high transparency like glass. Increasing the deposition pressure we have formed ultra water-repellent (contact angle for a water drop of over about 150 degrees) thin films by microwave PCVD using a multiple gas mixture of tetramethylsilane (TMS), (heptadecafluoro-1,1,2,2-tetrahydro-decyl)-1-trimethoxysilane (FAS-17) and argon. Ultra water-repellency appears at higher total pressures over 40 Pa because the surface becomes rough due to the growth of large particles. The color of these ultra water-repellent films is slightly white because of the scattering of light by the large particles. Recently we have also deposited transparent ultra water-repellent thin films at low substrate temperatures by microwave PCVD using organosilicon compounds without fluorine as source gases. We evaluated water repellency, optical transmittance, surface morphology and chemical composition of the deposited films. At the suitable substrate position the deposited film gave the contact angle of about 150 degrees and the transmittance of over 80 visible region for a coated glass (thickness was about 1 micron). The control of the surface morphology of the deposited films is most important to obtain the transparent ultra water-repellent films.

  7. Understanding Pulsed Plasma Jets with Advanced Simulations, Ground and Space Experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gatsonis, Nikolaos

    2004-11-01

    Pulsed plasma jets are found in diverse areas, such as thruster plume/spacecraft interactions, artificial release experiments, space plasma physics, and plasma materials processing. We review recent experimental and computational work and elucidate on physical characteristics and processes relevant to electric propulsion plumes. We present first results of experimental investigations of pulsed plasma thruster (PPT) plumes that led to the development of a new method of operation for triple and quadruple Langmuir probes. This novel current-mode method involves biasing all probe electrodes and requires the measurement of probe currents providing the electron temperature, the electron density and the ratio of ion speed to most probable thermal speed. We review the current-mode probe theory for a single species, two-temperature, collisionless plasma along with formal sensitivity analysis of the new diagnostic. The NASA Glenn Research Center laboratory Teflon® PPT used in the experiments was operating at discharge energies of 5, 20 and 40 Joules, with a pulse duration of 10-15 microseconds, ablating 20-50 micrograms/pulse. We present current-mode triple and quadruple probe measurements obtained at various locations in the plume of the plasma source. Extensive comparisons between double probe and current-mode probe measurements validate the new method. We present next computational modeling of plumes from a NASA Glenn Research Center laboratory micro Pulsed Plasma Thruster. The axisymmetric, hybrid (fluid/particle) methodology that introduced several new modeling and algorithmic approaches. Neutrals are modeled with the Direct Simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) method and ions with a Hybrid-Particle-in-Cell (hybrid-PIC) collisional method. Electrons are modeled as a massless fluid with a momentum equation. The Non-Time-Counter methodology is used for neutral-neutral, elastic ion-neutral, and charge exchange collisions. Ion-electron collisions are modeled with the use of a

  8. Electric propulsion for satellites and spacecraft: established technologies and novel approaches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazouffre, Stéphane

    2016-06-01

    This contribution presents a short review of electric propulsion (EP) technologies for satellites and spacecraft. Electric thrusters, also termed ion or plasma thrusters, deliver a low thrust level compared to their chemical counterparts, but they offer significant advantages for in-space propulsion as energy is uncoupled to the propellant, therefore allowing for large energy densities. Although the development of EP goes back to the 1960s, the technology potential has just begun to be fully exploited because of the increase in the available power aboard spacecraft, as demonstrated by the very recent appearance of all-electric communication satellites. This article first describes the fundamentals of EP: momentum conservation and the ideal rocket equation, specific impulse and thrust, figures of merit and a comparison with chemical propulsion. Subsequently, the influence of the power source type and characteristics on the mission profile is discussed. Plasma thrusters are classically grouped into three categories according to the thrust generation process: electrothermal, electrostatic and electromagnetic devices. The three groups, along with the associated plasma discharge and energy transfer mechanisms, are presented via a discussion of long-standing technologies like arcjet thrusters, magnetoplasmadynamic thrusters, pulsed plasma thrusters and ion engines, as well as Hall thrusters and variants. More advanced concepts and new approaches for performance improvement are discussed afterwards: magnetic shielding and wall-less configurations, negative ion thrusters and plasma acceleration with a magnetic nozzle. Finally, various alternative propellant options are analyzed and possible research paths for the near future are examined.

  9. Breakthrough Propulsion Physics Research Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Millis, Marc G.

    1996-01-01

    In 1996, a team of government, university and industry researchers proposed a program to seek the ultimate breakthroughs in space transportation: propulsion that requires no propellant mass, propulsion that can approach and, if possible, circumvent light speed, and breakthrough methods of energy production to power such devices. This Breakthrough Propulsion Physics program, managed by Lewis Research Center, is one part of a comprehensive, long range Advanced Space Transportation Plan managed by Marshall Space Flight Center. Because the breakthrough goals are beyond existing science, a main emphasis of this program is to establish metrics and ground rules to produce near-term credible progress toward these incredible possibilities. An introduction to the emerging scientific possibilities from which such solutions can be sought is also presented.

  10. NASA electrothermal auxiliary propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stone, J. R.

    1986-01-01

    Electrothermal auxiliary propulsion systems provide high performance options which can have major mission benefits. There are several electrothermal concepts which offer a range of characteristics and benefits. Resistojets are the highest thrust to power option and are currently operational at mission average values of specific impulse, I sub sp approximately 295 sec. Long life, multipropellant resistojets are being developed for the space station, and resistojet technology advancements are being pursued to improve the I sub sp by more than 20 percent for resistojets used in satellite applications. Direct current arcjets have the potential of I sub sp over 400 sec with storable propellants and should provide over 1000 sec with hydrogen. Advanced concepts are being investigated to provide high power density options and possible growth to primary propulsion applications. Broad based experimental and analytical research and technology programs of NASA are summarized and recent significant advances are reviewed.

  11. Advanced electric propulsion research, 1991

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Monheiser, Jeffery M.

    1992-01-01

    A simple model for the production of ions that impinge on and sputter erode the accelerator grid of an ion thruster is presented. Charge-exchange and electron-impact ion production processes are considered, but initial experimental results suggest the charge-exchange process dominates. Additional experimental results show the effects of changes in thruster operating conditions on the length of the region from which these ions are drawn upstream into the grid. Results which show erosion patterns and indicate molybdenum accelerator grids erode more rapidly than graphite ones are also presented.

  12. Electromagnetic propulsion for spacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, Roger M.

    1993-01-01

    Three electromagnetic propulsion technologies, solid propellant pulsed plasma thrusters (PPT), magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) thrusters, and pulsed inductive thrusters (PIT), were developed for application to auxiliary and primary spacecraft propulsion. Both the PPT and MPD thrusters were flown in space, though only PPT's were used on operational satellites. The performance of operational PPT's is quite poor, providing only approximately 8 percent efficiency at approximately 1000 s specific impulse. However, laboratory PPT's yielding 34 percent efficiency at 2000 s specific impulse were extensively tested, and peak performance levels of 53 percent efficiency at 5170 s specific impulse were demonstrated. MPD thrusters were flown as experiments on the Japanese MS-T4 spacecraft and the Space Shuttle and were qualified for a flight in 1994. The flight MPD thrusters were pulsed, with a peak performance of 22 percent efficiency at 2500 s specific impulse using ammonia propellant. Laboratory MPD thrusters were demonstrated with up to 70 percent efficiency and 700 s specific impulse using lithium propellant. While the PIT thruster has never been flown, recent performance measurements using ammonia and hydrazine propellants are extremely encouraging, reaching 50 percent efficiency for specific impulses between 4000 to 8000 s. The fundamental operating principles, performance measurements, and system level design for the three types of electromagnetic thrusters are reviewed, and available data on flight tests are discussed for the PPT and MPD thrusters.

  13. Electrostatic propulsion using C60 molecules

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leifer, Stephanie D.; Rapp, Donald; Saunders, Winston A.

    1992-01-01

    An evaluation is made of the potential benefits of C60 molecules as a basis for ion propulsion. Because C60 is storable, its use may result in a larger usable propellant fraction than previous methods of cluster ion propulsion. C60 may also relax such engineering constraints as grid spacing, which restrict the performance of noble gas ion propulsion. The behavior of C60 in a plasma discharge environment, as well as various electron impact cross sections of the molecule, will greatly afftect the feasibility of the concept.

  14. Advances in Langmuir probe diagnostics of the plasma potential and electron-energy distribution function in magnetized plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popov, Tsv K.; Dimitrova, M.; Ivanova, P.; Kovačič, J.; Gyergyek, T.; Dejarnac, R.; Stöckel, J.; Pedrosa, M. A.; López-Bruna, D.; Hidalgo, C.

    2016-06-01

    Advanced Langmuir probe techniques for evaluating the plasma potential and electron-energy distribution function (EEDF) in magnetized plasma are reviewed. It is shown that when the magnetic field applied is very weak and the electrons reach the probe without collisions in the probe sheath the second-derivative Druyvesteyn formula can be used for EEDF evaluation. At low values of the magnetic field, an extended second-derivative Druyvesteyn formula yields reliable results, while at higher values of the magnetic field, the first-derivative probe technique is applicable for precise evaluation of the plasma potential and the EEDF. There is an interval of intermediate values of the magnetic field when both techniques—the extended second-derivative and the first-derivative one—can be used. Experimental results from probe measurements in different ranges of magnetic field are reviewed and discussed: low-pressure argon gas discharges in the presence of a magnetic field in the range from 0.01 to 0.08 T, probe measurements in circular hydrogen plasmas for high-temperature fusion (magnetic fields from 0.45 T to 1.3 T) in small ISTTOK and CASTOR tokamaks, D-shape COMPASS tokamak plasmas, as well as in the TJ-II stellarator. In the vicinity of the last closed flux surface (LCFS) in tokamaks and in the TJ-II stellarator, the EEDF obtained is found to be bi-Maxwellian, while close to the tokamak chamber wall it is Maxwellian. The mechanism of the appearance of a bi-Maxwellian EEDF in the vicinity of the LCFS is discussed. Comparison of the results from probe measurements with those obtained from calculations using the ASTRA and EIRENE codes shows that the main reason for the appearance of a bi-Maxwellian EEDF in the vicinity of the LCFS is the ionization of the neutral atoms.

  15. Solar Electric Propulsion for Mars Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hack, Kurt J.

    1998-01-01

    Highly propellant-efficient electric propulsion is being combined with advanced solar power technology to provide a non-nuclear transportation option for the human exploration of Mars. By virtue of its high specific impulse, electric propulsion offers a greater change in spacecraft velocity for each pound of propellant than do conventional chemical rockets. As a result, a mission to Mars based on solar electric propulsion (SEP) would require fewer heavy-lift launches than a traditional all-chemical space propulsion scenario would. Performance, as measured by mass to orbit and trip time, would be comparable to the NASA design reference mission for human Mars exploration, which utilizes nuclear thermal propulsion; but it would avoid the issues surrounding the use of nuclear reactors in space.

  16. Plasma Shape and Current Density Profile Control in Advanced Tokamak Operating Scenarios

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Wenyu

    The need for new sources of energy is expected to become a critical problem within the next few decades. Nuclear fusion has sufficient energy density to potentially supply the world population with its increasing energy demands. The tokamak is a magnetic confinement device used to achieve controlled fusion reactions. Experimental fusion technology has now reached a level where tokamaks are able to produce about as much energy as is expended in heating the fusion fuel. The next step towards the realization of a nuclear fusion tokamak power plant is ITER, which will be capable of exploring advanced tokamak (AT) modes, characterized by a high fusion gain and plasma stability. The extreme requirements of the advanced modes motivates researchers to improve the modeling of the plasma response as well as the design of feedback controllers. This dissertation focuses on several magnetic and kinetic control problems, including the plasma current, position and shape control, and data-driven and first-principles-driven modeling and control of plasma current density profile and the normalized plasma pressure ratio betaN. The plasma is confined within the vacuum vessel by an external electromagnetic field, produced primarily by toroidal and poloidal field coils. The outermost closed plasma surface or plasma boundary is referred to as the shape of the plasma. A central characteristic of AT plasma regimes is an extreme elongated shape. The equilibrium among the electromagnetic forces acting on an elongated plasma is unstable. Moreover, the tokamak performance is improved if the plasma is located in close proximity to the torus wall, which guarantees an efficient use of available volume. As a consequence, feedback control of the plasma position and shape is necessary. In this dissertation, an Hinfinity-based, multi-input-multi-output (MIMO) controller for the National Spherical Torus Experiment (NSTX) is developed, which is used to control the plasma position, shape, and X

  17. Descriptions of a linear device developed for research on advanced plasma imaging and dynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Chung, J.; Lee, K. D.; Seo, D. C.; Nam, Y. U.; Ko, W. H.; Lee, J. H.; Choi, M. C.

    2009-10-15

    The research on advanced plasma imaging and dynamics (RAPID) device is a newly developed linear electron cyclotron resonance (ECR) plasma device. It has a variety of axial magnetic field profiles provided by eight water-cooled magnetic coils and two dc power supplies. The positions of the magnetic coils are freely adjustable along the axial direction and the power supplies can be operated with many combinations of electrical wiring to the coils. A 6 kW 2.45 GHz magnetron is used to produce steady-state ECR plasmas with central magnetic fields of 875 and/or 437.5 G (second harmonic). The cylindrical stainless steel vacuum chamber is 300 mm in diameter and 750 mm in length and has eight radial and ten axial ports including 6-in. and 8-in. viewing windows for heating and diagnostics. Experimental observation of ECR plasma heating has been recently carried out during the initial plasma operation. The main diagnostic systems including a 94 GHz heterodyne interferometer, a high-resolution 25 channel one-dimensional array spectrometer, a single channel survey spectrometer, and an electric probe have been also prepared. The RAPID device is a flexible simulator for the understanding of tokamak edge plasma physics and new diagnostic system development. In this work, we describe the RAPID device and initial operation results.

  18. Prognostic Impact of Pretreatment Plasma Fibrinogen in Patients with Locally Advanced Oral and Oropharyngeal Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Holzinger, Daniel; Danilovic, Ivan; Seemann, Rudolf; Kornek, Gabriela; Engelmann, Johannes; Pillerstorff, Robert; Holawe, Simone; Psyrri, Amanda; Erovic, Boban M.; Farwell, Gregory; Perisanidis, Christos

    2016-01-01

    Background We aimed to determine the prognostic significance of pretreatment plasma fibrinigen in patients with oral and oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (OOSCC). Methods A cohort of 183 patients with locally advanced OOSCC receiving preoperative chemoradiotherapy was retrospectively examined. Using ROC curve analysis, a pretreatment plasma fibrinogen cutoff value of 447mg/dL was determined. The primary endpoints were overall survival and recurrence-free survival. A secondary endpoint was to determine whether pretreatment plasma fibrinogen could predict treatment response to neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy. Cox regression models and Kaplan–Meier curves were used for survival analyses. Results Seventy-one patients had an elevated pretreatment plasma fibrinogen (fibrinogen >447mg/dL). Patients with high fibrinogen showed significantly higher pathologic stages after neoadjuvant treatment than those with low fibrinogen (p = 0.037). In univariate analysis, elevated fibrinogen was associated with poor overall survival (p = 0.005) and recurrence-free survival (p = 0.008) Multivariate analysis revealed that elevated fibrinogen remained an independent risk factor for death (hazard ratio 1.78, 95% CI 1.09–2.90, p = 0.021) and relapse (hazard ratio 1.78, 95% CI 1.11–2.86, p = 0.016). Conclusion Elevated pretreatment plasma fibrinogen is associated with lack of response to neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy and reduced OS and RFS in patients with OOSCC. Thus, plasma fibrinogen may emerge as a novel prognostic indicator and a potential therapeutic target in OOSCC. PMID:27362659

  19. Profile control of advanced tokamak plasmas in view of continuous operation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazon, D.

    2015-07-01

    The concept of the tokamak is a very good candidate to lead to a fusion reactor. In fact, certain regimes of functioning allow today the tokamaks to attain performances close to those requested by a reactor. Among the various scenarios of functioning nowadays considered for the reactor option, certain named 'advanced scenarios' are characterized by an improvement of the stability and confinement in the plasma core, as well as by a modification of the current profile, notably thank to an auto-generated 'bootstrap' current. The general frame of this paper treats the perspective of a real-time control of advanced regimes. Concrete examples will underline the impact of diagnostics on the identification of plasma models, from which the control algorithms are constructed. Several preliminary attempts will be described.

  20. NASA Propulsion Engineering Research Center, volume 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    Over the past year, the Propulsion Engineering Research Center at The Pennsylvania State University continued its progress toward meeting the goals of NASA's University Space Engineering Research Centers (USERC) program. The USERC program was initiated in 1988 by the Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology to provide an invigorating force to drive technology advancements in the U.S. space industry. The Propulsion Center's role in this effort is to provide a fundamental basis from which the technology advances in propulsion can be derived. To fulfill this role, an integrated program was developed that focuses research efforts on key technical areas, provides students with a broad education in traditional propulsion-related science and engineering disciplines, and provides minority and other under-represented students with opportunities to take their first step toward professional careers in propulsion engineering. The program is made efficient by incorporating government propulsion laboratories and the U.S. propulsion industry into the program through extensive interactions and research involvement. The Center is comprised of faculty, professional staff, and graduate and undergraduate students working on a broad spectrum of research issues related to propulsion. The Center's research focus encompasses both current and advanced propulsion concepts for space transportation, with a research emphasis on liquid propellant rocket engines. The liquid rocket engine research includes programs in combustion and turbomachinery. Other space transportation modes that are being addressed include anti-matter, electric, nuclear, and solid propellant propulsion. Outside funding supports a significant fraction of Center research, with the major portion of the basic USERC grant being used for graduate student support and recruitment. The remainder of the USERC funds are used to support programs to increase minority student enrollment in engineering, to maintain Center

  1. NASA Propulsion Engineering Research Center, volume 1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1993-11-01

    Over the past year, the Propulsion Engineering Research Center at The Pennsylvania State University continued its progress toward meeting the goals of NASA's University Space Engineering Research Centers (USERC) program. The USERC program was initiated in 1988 by the Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology to provide an invigorating force to drive technology advancements in the U.S. space industry. The Propulsion Center's role in this effort is to provide a fundamental basis from which the technology advances in propulsion can be derived. To fulfill this role, an integrated program was developed that focuses research efforts on key technical areas, provides students with a broad education in traditional propulsion-related science and engineering disciplines, and provides minority and other under-represented students with opportunities to take their first step toward professional careers in propulsion engineering. The program is made efficient by incorporating government propulsion laboratories and the U.S. propulsion industry into the program through extensive interactions and research involvement. The Center is comprised of faculty, professional staff, and graduate and undergraduate students working on a broad spectrum of research issues related to propulsion. The Center's research focus encompasses both current and advanced propulsion concepts for space transportation, with a research emphasis on liquid propellant rocket engines. The liquid rocket engine research includes programs in combustion and turbomachinery. Other space transportation modes that are being addressed include anti-matter, electric, nuclear, and solid propellant propulsion. Outside funding supports a significant fraction of Center research, with the major portion of the basic USERC grant being used for graduate student support and recruitment. The remainder of the USERC funds are used to support programs to increase minority student enrollment in engineering, to maintain Center

  2. Gasdynamic Mirror Fusion Propulsion Experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Emrich, William J., Jr.; Rodgers, Stephen L. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Nuclear fusion appears to be the most promising concept for producing extremely high specific impulse rocket engines. One particular fusion concept which seems to be particularly well suited for fusion propulsion applications is the gasdynamic mirror (GDM). This device would operate at much higher plasma densities and with much larger LD ratios than previous mirror machines. Several advantages accrue from such a design. First, the high LA:) ratio minimizes to a large extent certain magnetic curvature effects which lead to plasma instabilities causing a loss of plasma confinement. Second, the high plasma density will result in the plasma behaving much more Re a conventional fluid with a mean free path shorter than the length of the device. This characteristic helps reduce problems associated with "loss cone" microinstabilities. An experimental GDM device is currently being constructed at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center to provide an initial assessment of the feasibility of this type of propulsion system. Initial experiments are expected to commence in the late fall of 2000.

  3. Supersonic STOVL propulsion technology program: An overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blaha, Bernard J.; Batterton, Peter G.

    1990-01-01

    Planning activities are continuing between NASA, the DoD, and two foreign governments to develop the technology and to show the design capability by the mid-1990's for advanced, supersonic, short takeoff and vertical landing (STOVL) aircraft. Propulsion technology is the key to achieving viable STOVL aircraft, and NASA Lewis will play a lead role in the development of these required propulsion technologies. The initial research programs are focused on technologies common to two or more of the possible STOVL propulsion system concepts. An overview is presented of the NASA Lewis role in the overall program plan and recent results of the research program. The future research program will be focused on one or possibly two of the propulsion concepts seen as most likely to be successful in the post advanced tactical fighter time frame.

  4. Performance and Controllability of Pulsed Ion Beam Ablation Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Yazawa, Masaru; Buttapeng, Chainarong; Harada, Nobuhiro; Suematsu, Hisayuki; Jiang Weihua; Yatsui, Kiyoshi

    2006-05-02

    We propose novel propulsion driven by ablation plasma pressures produced by the irradiation of pulsed ion beams onto a propellant. The ion beam ablation propulsion demonstrates by a thin foil (50 {mu}mt), and the flyer velocity of 7.7 km/s at the ion beam energy density of 2 kJ/cm2 adopted by using the Time-of-flight method is observed numerically and experimentally. We estimate the performance of the ion beam ablation propulsion as specific impulse of 3600 s and impulse bit density of 1700 Ns/m2 obtained from the demonstration results. In the numerical analysis, a one-dimensional hydrodynamic model with ion beam energy depositions is used. The control of the ion beam kinetic energy is only improvement of the performance but also propellant consumption. The spacecraft driven by the ion beam ablation provides high performance efficiency with short-pulsed ion beam irradiation. The numerical results of the advanced model explained latent heat and real gas equation of state agreed well with experimental ones over a wide range of the incident ion beam energy density.

  5. OTV Propulsion Issues

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1984-01-01

    The statistical technology needs of aero-assist maneuvering, propulsion, and usage of cryogenic fluids were presented. Industry panels discussed the servicing of reusable space based vehicles and propulsion-vehicle interation.

  6. In-Space Propulsion Solar Electric Propulsion Program Overview of 2006

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baggett, Randy M.; Hulgan, Wendy W.; Dankanich, John W.; Bechtel, Robert T.

    2006-01-01

    The primary source of electric propulsion development throughout NASA is implemented by the In-Space Propulsion Technology Project at the NASA MSFC under the management of the Science Mission Directorate. The Solar Electric Propulsion technology area's objective is to develop near and mid-term SEP technology to enhance or enable mission capture while minimizing risk and cost to the end user. Major activities include developing NASA s Evolutionary Xenon Thruster (NEXT), implementing a Standard Architecture, and developing a long life High Voltage Hall Accelerator (HiVHAC). Lower level investments include advanced feed system development, advanced cathode testing and xenon recovery testing. Progress on current investments and future plans are discussed.

  7. OEPSS operationally efficient propulsion system study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    A final report on the Operationally Efficient Propulsion System Study (OEPSS) is presented. A review of Launch Site Operations, OEPSS objectives, operations support structure, OEPSS Concerns List, and scope of OEPSS are summarized, along with goals of OEPSS technologies, and operations technology levels. Air-augmented ejector/rocket, flash boiling tank pressurization technology, and advanced LH2 turbopump are described. Launch facilities, operations-driven propulsion system architecture, integrated booster propulsion module, turbopump operating conditions, and payload capability using integrated engine elements are addressed among other topics.

  8. The Pathfinder Chemical Transfer Propulsion Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hannum, Ned P.; Berkopec, Frank D.; Zurawski, Robert L.

    1989-01-01

    Pathfinder is a research and technology initiative by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) intended to strengthen the technology base of the United States civil space program in preparation for future space exploration missions. Pathfinder begins in FY-89. One of the four major thrusts is the Chemical Transfer Propulsion program which will provide the propulsion technology for high performance, liquid oxygen/liquid hydrogen expander cycle engines which are expected to be operated and maintained in space. These advanced engines will enhance or enable a variety of future space exploration missions. The goals and objectives, management, technical plan, and technology transfer for the Chemical Transfer Propulsion element of Pathfinder are described.

  9. Laser Propulsion for LOTV Space Missions

    SciTech Connect

    Rezunkov, Yuri A.

    2004-03-30

    Advanced Space Propulsion-Investigation Committee (ASPIC) of the Japan Society for Aeronautics and Space Sciences (JSASS) selected the Laser Orbital Transfer Vehicle (LOTV) project for development of non-chemical space propulsion systems that have a capability to sustain expanded human space activities in the 21st century. This talk is presenting an analysis of the laser propulsion researches made within the frames of the ISTC Project no. 1801 as applied to the LOTV Project. The study includes the development of techniques for low-thrust maneuvers of the spacecraft to achieve geostationary orbits.

  10. Application of propfan propulsion to general aviation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Awker, R. W.

    1986-01-01

    Recent studies of advanced propfan propulsion systems have shown significant reductions in fuel consumption of 15-30 percent for transport class aircraft. This paper presents the results of a study which examined applying propfan propulsion to General Aviation class aircraft to determine if similar improvements could be achieved for business aircraft. In addition to the potential performance gains, this paper also addresses the cost aspects of propfan propulsion on General Aviation aircraft emphasizing the significant impact that the cost of capital and tax aspects have on determining the total cost of operation for business aircraft.

  11. OTV propulsion tecnology programmatic overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cooper, L. P.

    1984-01-01

    An advanced orbit transfer vehicles (OTV) which will be an integral part of the national space transportation system to carry men and cargo between low Earth orbit and geosynchronous orbit will perform planetary transfers and deliver large acceleration limited space structures to high Earth orbits is reviewed. The establishment of an advanced propulsion technology base for an OTV for the mid 1990's is outlined. The program supports technology for three unique engine concepts. Work is conducted to generic technologies which benefit all three concepts and specific technology which benefits only one of the concepts. Concept and technology definitions to identify propulsion innovations, and subcomponent research to explore and validate their potential benefits are included.

  12. OTV propulsion tecnology programmatic overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cooper, L. P.

    1984-04-01

    An advanced orbit transfer vehicles (OTV) which will be an integral part of the national space transportation system to carry men and cargo between low Earth orbit and geosynchronous orbit will perform planetary transfers and deliver large acceleration limited space structures to high Earth orbits is reviewed. The establishment of an advanced propulsion technology base for an OTV for the mid 1990's is outlined. The program supports technology for three unique engine concepts. Work is conducted to generic technologies which benefit all three concepts and specific technology which benefits only one of the concepts. Concept and technology definitions to identify propulsion innovations, and subcomponent research to explore and validate their potential benefits are included.

  13. Rocket-Based Combined-Cycle (RBCC) Propulsion Technology Workshop. Tutorial session

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    The goal of this workshop was to illuminate the nation's space transportation and propulsion engineering community on the potential of hypersonic combined cycle (airbreathing/rocket) propulsion systems for future space transportation applications. Four general topics were examined: (1) selections from the expansive advanced propulsion archival resource; (2) related propulsion systems technical backgrounds; (3) RBCC engine multimode operations related subsystem background; and (4) focused review of propulsion aspects of current related programs.

  14. Propulsion Risk Reduction Activities for Non-Toxic Cryogenic Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Timothy D.; Klem, Mark D.; Fisher, Kenneth

    2010-01-01

    The Propulsion and Cryogenics Advanced Development (PCAD) Project s primary objective is to develop propulsion system technologies for non-toxic or "green" propellants. The PCAD project focuses on the development of non-toxic propulsion technologies needed to provide necessary data and relevant experience to support informed decisions on implementation of non-toxic propellants for space missions. Implementation of non-toxic propellants in high performance propulsion systems offers NASA an opportunity to consider other options than current hypergolic propellants. The PCAD Project is emphasizing technology efforts in reaction control system (RCS) thruster designs, ascent main engines (AME), and descent main engines (DME). PCAD has a series of tasks and contracts to conduct risk reduction and/or retirement activities to demonstrate that non-toxic cryogenic propellants can be a feasible option for space missions. Work has focused on 1) reducing the risk of liquid oxygen/liquid methane ignition, demonstrating the key enabling technologies, and validating performance levels for reaction control engines for use on descent and ascent stages; 2) demonstrating the key enabling technologies and validating performance levels for liquid oxygen/liquid methane ascent engines; and 3) demonstrating the key enabling technologies and validating performance levels for deep throttling liquid oxygen/liquid hydrogen descent engines. The progress of these risk reduction and/or retirement activities will be presented.

  15. Propulsion Risk Reduction Activities for Nontoxic Cryogenic Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Timothy D.; Klem, Mark D.; Fisher, Kenneth L.

    2010-01-01

    The Propulsion and Cryogenics Advanced Development (PCAD) Project s primary objective is to develop propulsion system technologies for nontoxic or "green" propellants. The PCAD project focuses on the development of nontoxic propulsion technologies needed to provide necessary data and relevant experience to support informed decisions on implementation of nontoxic propellants for space missions. Implementation of nontoxic propellants in high performance propulsion systems offers NASA an opportunity to consider other options than current hypergolic propellants. The PCAD Project is emphasizing technology efforts in reaction control system (RCS) thruster designs, ascent main engines (AME), and descent main engines (DME). PCAD has a series of tasks and contracts to conduct risk reduction and/or retirement activities to demonstrate that nontoxic cryogenic propellants can be a feasible option for space missions. Work has focused on 1) reducing the risk of liquid oxygen/liquid methane ignition, demonstrating the key enabling technologies, and validating performance levels for reaction control engines for use on descent and ascent stages; 2) demonstrating the key enabling technologies and validating performance levels for liquid oxygen/liquid methane ascent engines; and 3) demonstrating the key enabling technologies and validating performance levels for deep throttling liquid oxygen/liquid hydrogen descent engines. The progress of these risk reduction and/or retirement activities will be presented.

  16. European auxiliary propulsion, 1972

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holcomb, L. B.

    1972-01-01

    The chemical and electric auxiliary propulsion technology of the United Kingdom, France, and West Germany is discussed in detail, and the propulsion technology achievements of Italy, India, Japan, and Russia are reviewed. A comparison is presented of Shell 405 catalyst and a European spontaneous hydrazine catalyst called CNESRO I. Finally, conclusions are drawn regarding future trends in European auxiliary propulsion technology development.

  17. A review of NASA's propulsion programs for aviation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stewart, W. L.; Johnson, H. W.; Weber, R. J.

    1978-01-01

    A review of five NASA engine-oriented propulsion programs of major importance to civil aviation are presented and discussed. Included are programs directed at exploring propulsion system concepts for (1) energy conservation subsonic aircraft (improved current turbofans, advanced turbofans, and advanced turboprops); (2) supersonic cruise aircraft (variable cycle engines); (3) general aviation aircraft (improved reciprocating engines and small gas turbines); (4) powered lift aircraft (advanced turbofans); and (5) advanced rotorcraft.

  18. Electric propulsion on SMART-1 - a technology milestone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Estublier, Denis; Saccoccia, Giorgio; Gonzales Del Amo, Jose

    2007-02-01

    In December 2002, when France's Stentor satellite was all set to use electric propulsion for stationkeeping, ESA's SMART-1 was just completing its first end-to-end spacecraft test. Then Stentor was lost in the Ariane-5 launch failure, making SMART-1 the first and only technology demonstration mission with Hall-effect plasma propulsion. As a result, there was a great deal of interest in the electric propulsion community in SMART-1's flight.

  19. Characterization of a linear device developed for research on advanced plasma imaging and dynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Chung, J.; Lee, K. D.; Seo, D. C.; Nam, Y. U.; Choi, M. C.

    2010-10-15

    Within the scope of long term research on imaging diagnostics for steady-state plasmas and understanding of edge plasma physics through diagnostics with conventional spectroscopic methods, we have constructed a linear electron cyclotron resonance (ECR) plasma device named Research on Advanced Plasma Imaging and Dynamics (RAPID). It has a variety of axial magnetic field profiles provided by eight water-cooled magnetic coils and two dc power supplies. The positions of the magnetic coils are freely adjustable along the axial direction and the power supplies can be operated with many combinations of electrical wiring to the coils. Here, a 6 kW 2.45 GHz magnetron is used to produce steady-state hydrogen, helium, and argon plasmas with central magnetic fields of 875 and/or 437.5 G (second harmonic). In order to achieve the highest possible plasma performance within the limited input parameters, wall conditioning experiments were carried out. Chamber bake-out was achieved with heating coils that were wound covering the vessel, and long-pulse electron cyclotron heating discharge cleaning was also followed after 4 days of bake-out. A uniform bake-out temperature (150 deg. C) was achieved by wrapping the vessel in high temperature thermal insulation textile and by controlling the heating coil current using a digital control system. The partial pressure changes were observed using a residual gas analyzer, and a total system pressure of 5x10{sup -8} Torr was finally reached. Diagnostic systems including a millimeter-wave interferometer, a high resolution survey spectrometer, a Langmuir probe, and an ultrasoft x-ray detector were used to provide the evidence that the plasma performance was improved as we desired. In this work, we present characterization of the RAPID device for various system conditions and configurations.

  20. Characterization of a linear device developed for research on advanced plasma imaging and dynamics.

    PubMed

    Chung, J; Lee, K D; Seo, D C; Nam, Y U; Choi, M C

    2010-10-01

    Within the scope of long term research on imaging diagnostics for steady-state plasmas and understanding of edge plasma physics through diagnostics with conventional spectroscopic methods, we have constructed a linear electron cyclotron resonance (ECR) plasma device named Research on Advanced Plasma Imaging and Dynamics (RAPID). It has a variety of axial magnetic field profiles provided by eight water-cooled magnetic coils and two dc power supplies. The positions of the magnetic coils are freely adjustable along the axial direction and the power supplies can be operated with many combinations of electrical wiring to the coils. Here, a 6 kW 2.45 GHz magnetron is used to produce steady-state hydrogen, helium, and argon plasmas with central magnetic fields of 875 and/or 437.5 G (second harmonic). In order to achieve the highest possible plasma performance within the limited input parameters, wall conditioning experiments were carried out. Chamber bake-out was achieved with heating coils that were wound covering the vessel, and long-pulse electron cyclotron heating discharge cleaning was also followed after 4 days of bake-out. A uniform bake-out temperature (150 °C) was achieved by wrapping the vessel in high temperature thermal insulation textile and by controlling the heating coil current using a digital control system. The partial pressure changes were observed using a residual gas analyzer, and a total system pressure of 5×10(-8) Torr was finally reached. Diagnostic systems including a millimeter-wave interferometer, a high resolution survey spectrometer, a Langmuir probe, and an ultrasoft x-ray detector were used to provide the evidence that the plasma performance was improved as we desired. In this work, we present characterization of the RAPID device for various system conditions and configurations.

  1. Preface to Special Topic: Advances in Radio Frequency Physics in Fusion Plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Tuccillo, Angelo A.; Ceccuzzi, Silvio; Phillips, Cynthia K.

    2014-06-15

    It has long been recognized that auxiliary plasma heating will be required to achieve the high temperature, high density conditions within a magnetically confined plasma in which a fusion “burn” may be sustained by copious fusion reactions. Consequently, the application of radio and microwave frequency electromagnetic waves to magnetically confined plasma, commonly referred to as RF, has been a major part of the program almost since its inception in the 1950s. These RF waves provide heating, current drive, plasma profile control, and Magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) stabilization. Fusion experiments employ electromagnetic radiation in a wide range of frequencies, from tens of MHz to hundreds of GHz. The fusion devices containing the plasma are typically tori, axisymmetric or non, in which the equilibrium magnetic fields are composed of a strong toroidal magnetic field generated by external coils, and a poloidal field created, at least in the symmetric configurations, by currents flowing in the plasma. The waves are excited in the peripheral regions of the plasma, by specially designed launching structures, and subsequently propagate into the core regions, where resonant wave-plasma interactions produce localized heating or other modification of the local equilibrium profiles. Experimental studies coupled with the development of theoretical models and advanced simulation codes over the past 40+ years have led to an unprecedented understanding of the physics of RF heating and current drive in the core of magnetic fusion devices. Nevertheless, there are serious gaps in our knowledge base that continue to have a negative impact on the success of ongoing experiments and that must be resolved as the program progresses to the next generation devices and ultimately to “demo” and “fusion power plant.” A serious gap, at least in the ion cyclotron (IC) range of frequencies and partially in the lower hybrid frequency ranges, is the difficulty in coupling large amount of

  2. Preface to Special Topic: Advances in Radio Frequency Physics in Fusion Plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tuccillo, Angelo A.; Phillips, Cynthia K.; Ceccuzzi, Silvio

    2014-06-01

    It has long been recognized that auxiliary plasma heating will be required to achieve the high temperature, high density conditions within a magnetically confined plasma in which a fusion "burn" may be sustained by copious fusion reactions. Consequently, the application of radio and microwave frequency electromagnetic waves to magnetically confined plasma, commonly referred to as RF, has been a major part of the program almost since its inception in the 1950s. These RF waves provide heating, current drive, plasma profile control, and Magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) stabilization. Fusion experiments employ electromagnetic radiation in a wide range of frequencies, from tens of MHz to hundreds of GHz. The fusion devices containing the plasma are typically tori, axisymmetric or non, in which the equilibrium magnetic fields are composed of a strong toroidal magnetic field generated by external coils, and a poloidal field created, at least in the symmetric configurations, by currents flowing in the plasma. The waves are excited in the peripheral regions of the plasma, by specially designed launching structures, and subsequently propagate into the core regions, where resonant wave-plasma interactions produce localized heating or other modification of the local equilibrium profiles. Experimental studies coupled with the development of theoretical models and advanced simulation codes over the past 40+ years have led to an unprecedented understanding of the physics of RF heating and current drive in the core of magnetic fusion devices. Nevertheless, there are serious gaps in our knowledge base that continue to have a negative impact on the success of ongoing experiments and that must be resolved as the program progresses to the next generation devices and ultimately to "demo" and "fusion power plant." A serious gap, at least in the ion cyclotron (IC) range of frequencies and partially in the lower hybrid frequency ranges, is the difficulty in coupling large amount of power to the

  3. Auxiliary propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosenberg, S. D.

    1984-02-01

    When man is put in the loop, almost anything can happen. Caution must be exercised in permitting life cycle costs analysis to control technology investment. One of the ways of reducing cost is to stay with the old tried and true technology. However, when requirements of a permanent space station are considered (15-year life, the issues associated with health monitoring, maintenance, and repair), the conclusion is that very little, if anything, is really state of the art. Before investing in old technologies to make them comply with the requirements of a permanent space station, the question of whether or not it is worth putting the money there as opposed to advancing the state of the art should be considered. Program managers and system designers must not make the mistake of selecting old technologies in the belief that they are state of the art.

  4. Identification of propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Merrill, Walter; Guo, Ten-Huei; Duyar, Ahmet

    1991-01-01

    This paper presents a tutorial on the use of model identification techniques for the identification of propulsion system models. These models are important for control design, simulation, parameter estimation, and fault detection. Propulsion system identification is defined in the context of the classical description of identification as a four step process that is unique because of special considerations of data and error sources. Propulsion system models are described along with the dependence of system operation on the environment. Propulsion system simulation approaches are discussed as well as approaches to propulsion system identification with examples for both air breathing and rocket systems.

  5. Solar Thermal Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gerrish, Harold P., Jr.

    2003-01-01

    This paper presents viewgraphs on Solar Thermal Propulsion (STP). Some of the topics include: 1) Ways to use Solar Energy for Propulsion; 2) Solar (fusion) Energy; 3) Operation in Orbit; 4) Propulsion Concepts; 5) Critical Equations; 6) Power Efficiency; 7) Major STP Projects; 8) Types of STP Engines; 9) Solar Thermal Propulsion Direct Gain Assembly; 10) Specific Impulse; 11) Thrust; 12) Temperature Distribution; 13) Pressure Loss; 14) Transient Startup; 15) Axial Heat Input; 16) Direct Gain Engine Design; 17) Direct Gain Engine Fabrication; 18) Solar Thermal Propulsion Direct Gain Components; 19) Solar Thermal Test Facility; and 20) Checkout Results.

  6. Concept for a shuttle-tended reusable interplanetary transport vehicle using nuclear electric propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nakagawa, R. Y.; Elliot, J. C.; Spilker, T. R.; Grayson, C. M.

    2003-01-01

    NASA has placed new emphasis on the development of advanced propulsion technologies including Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP). This technology would provide multiple benefits including high delta-V capability and high power for long duration spacecraft operations.

  7. NASA electric propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berkopec, F. D.; Stone, J. R.; Aston, G.

    1985-01-01

    It is pointed out that the requirements for future electric propulsion cover an extremely large range of technical and programmatic characteristics. A NASA program is to provide options for the many potential mission applications, taking into account work on electrostatic, electromagnetic, and electrothermal propulsion systems. The present paper is concerned with developments regarding the three classes of electric propulsion. Studies concerning electrostatic propulsion are concerned with ion propulsion for primary propulsion for planetary and earth-orbit transfer vehicles, stationkeeping for geosynchronous spacecraft, and ion thruster systems. In connection with investigations related to electromagnetic propulsion, attention is given to electromagnetic launchers, the Hall current thruster, and magnetoplasmadynamic thrusters. In a discussion of electrothermal developments, space station resistojets are considered along with high performance resistojets, arcjets, and a laser thruster.

  8. Plasma genetic and genomic abnormalities predict treatment response and clinical outcome in advanced prostate cancer

    PubMed Central

    Du, Meijun; Dittmar, Rachel L.; Lee, Adam; Nandy, Debashis; Yuan, Tiezheng; Guo, Yongchen; Wang, Yuan; Tschannen, Michael R.; Worthey, Elizabeth; Jacob, Howard; See, William; Kilari, Deepak; Wang, Xuexia; Hovey, Raymond L.; Huang, Chiang-Ching; Wang, Liang

    2015-01-01

    Liquid biopsies, examinations of tumor components in body fluids, have shown promise for predicting clinical outcomes. To evaluate tumor-associated genomic and genetic variations in plasma cell-free DNA (cfDNA) and their associations with treatment response and overall survival, we applied whole genome and targeted sequencing to examine the plasma cfDNAs derived from 20 patients with advanced prostate cancer. Sequencing-based genomic abnormality analysis revealed locus-specific gains or losses that were common in prostate cancer, such as 8q gains, AR amplifications, PTEN losses and TMPRSS2-ERG fusions. To estimate tumor burden in cfDNA, we developed a Plasma Genomic Abnormality (PGA) score by summing the most significant copy number variations. Cox regression analysis showed that PGA scores were significantly associated with overall survival (p < 0.04). After androgen deprivation therapy or chemotherapy, targeted sequencing showed significant mutational profile changes in genes involved in androgen biosynthesis, AR activation, DNA repair, and chemotherapy resistance. These changes may reflect the dynamic evolution of heterozygous tumor populations in response to these treatments. These results strongly support the feasibility of using non-invasive liquid biopsies as potential tools to study biological mechanisms underlying therapy-specific resistance and to predict disease progression in advanced prostate cancer. PMID:25915538

  9. Application of a Plasma Mass Separator to Advanced LWR Spent Fuel Reprocessing

    SciTech Connect

    Freeman, Richard; Miller, Robert; Papay, Larry; Wagoner, John; Ahlfeld, Charles; Czerwinski, Ken

    2006-07-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) is investigating spent fuel reprocessing for the purposes of increasing the effective capacity of a deep geological repository, reducing the radiotoxicity of waste placed in the repository and conserving nuclear fuel resources. DOE is considering hydro-chemical processing of the spent fuel after cutting the fuel cladding and fuel dissolution in nitric acid. The front end process, known as UREX, is largely based on the PUREX process and extracts U, Tc as well as fission product gases. A number of additional processing steps have become known as UREX+. One of the steps includes a further chemical treatment of remove Cs and Sr to reduce repository heat load. Other steps include successive extraction of the actinides from residual fission products, including the lanthanides. The additional UREX+ processing renders the actinides suitable for burning as reactor fuel in an advanced reactor to convert actinides to shorter-lived fission products and to produce power. New methods for separating groups of elements by their atomic mass have been developed and can be exploited to enhance spent fuel reprocessing. These physical processes dry the waste streams so that they can be vaporized and singly ionized in plasma that is contained in longitudinal magnetic and perpendicular electric fields. Proper configuration of the fields causes the plasma to rapidly rotate and expel heavier mass ions at the center of the machine. Lower mass ions form closed orbits within the cylindrical plasma column and are transported to either end of the machine. This plasma mass separator was originally developed to reduce the mass of material that must be immobilized in borosilicate glass from DOE defense waste at former weapons production facilities. The plasma mass separator appears to be well-suited for processing the UREX raffinate and solids streams by exploiting the large atomic mass gap that exists between lanthanides (< {approx}180 amu) and actinides

  10. Interpretation of the optical emission of argon in the plume of the Advanced Plasma Source

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harhausen, J.; Loffhagen, D.; Foest, R.

    2015-02-01

    The plume of the argon plasma of the Advanced Plasma Source employed for the deposition of optical coatings has been investigated by means of optical emission spectroscopy, Langmuir probe measurements as well as collisional radiative modeling using the measured electron energy probability function as the input. The emission of the ten argon lines considered is found to exhibit a cone-shaped spatial distribution. The emission on the axis of symmetry decreases exponentially with increasing distance from the source in good agreement with the results obtained by collisional radiative modeling and the radial extension of the Gaussian profile in the radial direction increases linearly along the axial direction. The analysis of the measured electron properties shows in particular that the electron pressure varies between about 2 Pa near the plasma source exit and 1 mPa at larger distances. The argon neutral density determined by collisional radiative modeling is found to be about 6 · 1011 cm-3 in the plasma plume in front of the source exit corresponding to a degree of ionization as high as 60%.

  11. Physics of the Advanced Plasma Source: a review of recent experimental and modeling approaches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brinkmann, R. P.; Harhausen, J.; Schröder, B.; Lapke, M.; Storch, R.; Styrnoll, T.; Awakowicz, P.; Foest, R.; Hannemann, M.; Loffhagen, D.; Ohl, A.

    2016-01-01

    The Advanced Plasma Source (APS), a gridless hot cathode glow discharge capable of generating an ion beam with an energy of up to 150 eV and a flux of 1019s-1, is a standard industrial tool for the process of plasma ion-assisted deposition (PIAD). This manuscript details the results of recent experimental and modeling work aimed at a physical understanding of the APS. A three-zone model is proposed which consists of (i) the ionization zone (the source itself) where the plasma is very dense, hot, and has a high ionization rate, (ii) the acceleration zone (of  ˜20 cm extension) where a strong outward-directed electric field accelerates the primary ions to a high kinetic energy, and (iii) a drift zone (the rest of the process chamber) where the emerging plasma beam is further modified by resonant charge exchange collisions that neutralize some of the energetic ions and generate, at the same time, a flux of slow ions.

  12. New steady-state quiescent high-confinement plasma in an experimental advanced superconducting tokamak.

    PubMed

    Hu, J S; Sun, Z; Guo, H Y; Li, J G; Wan, B N; Wang, H Q; Ding, S Y; Xu, G S; Liang, Y F; Mansfield, D K; Maingi, R; Zou, X L; Wang, L; Ren, J; Zuo, G Z; Zhang, L; Duan, Y M; Shi, T H; Hu, L Q

    2015-02-01

    A critical challenge facing the basic long-pulse high-confinement operation scenario (H mode) for ITER is to control a magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) instability, known as the edge localized mode (ELM), which leads to cyclical high peak heat and particle fluxes at the plasma facing components. A breakthrough is made in the Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak in achieving a new steady-state H mode without the presence of ELMs for a duration exceeding hundreds of energy confinement times, by using a novel technique of continuous real-time injection of a lithium (Li) aerosol into the edge plasma. The steady-state ELM-free H mode is accompanied by a strong edge coherent MHD mode (ECM) at a frequency of 35-40 kHz with a poloidal wavelength of 10.2 cm in the ion diamagnetic drift direction, providing continuous heat and particle exhaust, thus preventing the transient heat deposition on plasma facing components and impurity accumulation in the confined plasma. It is truly remarkable that Li injection appears to promote the growth of the ECM, owing to the increase in Li concentration and hence collisionality at the edge, as predicted by GYRO simulations. This new steady-state ELM-free H-mode regime, enabled by real-time Li injection, may open a new avenue for next-step fusion development.

  13. Solar Thermal Propulsion Test Facility at MSFC

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    This photograph shows an overall view of the Solar Thermal Propulsion Test Facility at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC). The 20-by 24-ft heliostat mirror, shown at the left, has dual-axis control that keeps a reflection of the sunlight on an 18-ft diameter concentrator mirror (right). The concentrator mirror then focuses the sunlight to a 4-in focal point inside the vacuum chamber, shown at the front of concentrator mirror. Researchers at MSFC have designed, fabricated, and tested the first solar thermal engine, a non-chemical rocket engine that produces lower thrust but has better thrust efficiency than chemical a combustion engine. MSFC turned to solar thermal propulsion in the early 1990s due to its simplicity, safety, low cost, and commonality with other propulsion systems. Solar thermal propulsion works by acquiring and redirecting solar energy to heat a propell nt. As part of MSFC's Space Transportation Directorate, the Propulsion Research Center serves as a national resource for research of advanced, revolutionary propulsion technologies. The mission is to move the Nation's capabilities beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of aircraft-like access to Earth-orbit, rapid travel throughout the solar system, and exploration of interstellar space.

  14. Development of Burning Plasma and Advanced Scenarios in the DIII-D Tokamak

    SciTech Connect

    Luce, T C

    2004-12-01

    Significant progress in the development of burning plasma scenarios, steady-state scenarios at high fusion performance, and basic tokamak physics has been made by the DIII-D Team. Discharges similar to the ITER baseline scenario have demonstrated normalized fusion performance nearly 50% higher than required for Q = 10 in ITER, under stationary conditions. Discharges that extrapolate to Q {approx} 10 for longer than one hour in ITER at reduced current have also been demonstrated in DIII-D under stationary conditions. Proof of high fusion performance with full noninductive operation has been obtained. Underlying this work are studies validating approaches to confinement extrapolation, disruption avoidance and mitigation, tritium retention, ELM avoidance, and operation above the no-wall pressure limit. In addition, the unique capabilities of the DIII-D facility have advanced studies of the sawtooth instability with unprecedented time and space resolution, threshold behavior in the electron heat transport, and rotation in plasmas in the absence of external torque.

  15. Development of Burning Plasma and Advanced Scenarios in the DIII-D Tokamak

    SciTech Connect

    Luce, T C

    2004-10-18

    Significant progress in the development of burning plasma scenarios, steady-state scenarios at high fusion performance, and basic tokamak physics has been made by the DIII-D Team. Discharges similar to the ITER baseline scenario have demonstrated normalized fusion performance nearly 50% higher than required for Q = 10 in ITER, under stationary conditions. Discharges that extrapolate to Q {approx} 10 for longer than one hour in ITER at reduced current have also been demonstrated in DIII-D under stationary conditions. Proof of high fusion performance with full noninductive operation has been obtained. Underlying this work are studies validating approaches to confinement extrapolation, disruption avoidance and mitigation, tritium retention, ELM avoidance, and operation above the no-wall pressure limit. In addition, the unique capabilities of the DIII-D facility have advanced studies of the sawtooth instability with unprecedented time and space resolution, threshold behavior in the electron heat transport, and rotation in plasmas in the absence of external torque.

  16. Magnetohydrodynamic Augmented Propulsion Experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Litchford, Ron J.; Cole, John; Lineberry, John; Chapman, Jim; Schmidt, Harold; Cook, Stephen (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    A fundamental obstacle to routine space access is the specific energy limitations associated with chemical fuels. In the case of vertical take-off, the high thrust needed for vertical liftoff and acceleration to orbit translates into power levels in the 10 GW range. Furthermore, useful payload mass fractions are possible only if the exhaust particle energy (i.e., exhaust velocity) is much greater than that available with traditional chemical propulsion. The electronic binding energy released by the best chemical reactions (e.g., LOX/LH2 for example, is less than 2 eV per product molecule (approx. 1.8 eV per H2O molecule), which translates into particle velocities less than 5 km/s. Useful payload fractions, however, will require exhaust velocities exceeding 15 km/s (i.e., particle energies greater than 20 eV). As an added challenge, the envisioned hypothetical RLV (reusable launch vehicle) should accomplish these amazing performance feats while providing relatively low acceleration levels to orbit (2-3g maximum). From such fundamental considerations, it is painfully obvious that planned and current RLV solutions based on chemical fuels alone represent only a temporary solution and can only result in minor gains, at best. What is truly needed is a revolutionary approach that will dramatically reduce the amount of fuel and size of the launch vehicle. This implies the need for new compact high-power energy sources as well as advanced accelerator technologies for increasing engine exhaust velocity. Electromagnetic acceleration techniques are of immense interest since they can be used to circumvent the thermal limits associated with conventional propulsion systems. This paper describes the Magnetohydrodynamic Augmented Propulsion Experiment (MAPX) being undertaken at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC). In this experiment, a 1-MW arc heater is being used as a feeder for a 1-MW magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) accelerator. The purpose of the experiment is to demonstrate

  17. Conceptual Design of an MTF Space Propulsion System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thio, Y. C. F.; Schmidt, G. R.; Kirkpatrick, R. C.; Turchi, P. J.; Rodgers, Stephen L. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Most fusion propulsion concepts that have been investigated in the past employ some form of inertial or magnetic confinement separately, and are encumbered by the need for advanced drivers (e.g. laser) or steady-state magnetic confinement systems (e.g. superconductors) that have historically resulted in large, massive spacecraft designs. Here we present a comparatively new approach, Magnetized Target Fusion (MTF), which offers a nearer-term avenue for realizing the tremendous performance benefits of fusion propulsion. MTF attempts to combine the favorable attributes of both inertially and magnetically confined fusion to achieve both efficient and low-cost compressional plasma heating and energy confinement. The key advantage of MTF is its less demanding requirements for driver energy and power processing. Additional features include: 1) very low system masses and volumes, 2) relatively low waste heat, 3) substantial utilization of energy from product neutrons, 4) efficient, low peak-power drivers based on existing pulsed power technology, 5) very high Isp , specific power and thrust, and 6) relatively affordable R&D pathways. MTF overcomes many of the problems associated with traditional fusion techniques, thus making it particularly attractive for space applications. Isp greater than 50,000 seconds and specific powers greater than 20 kilowatts/kilogram appear feasible using relatively near-term pulse power and plasma gun technology.

  18. Conceptual Design of an MTF Space Propulsion System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thio, Y. C. Francis; Schmidt, G. R.; Kirkpatrick, R. C.; Turchi, P. J.; Rodgers, Stephen L. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Most fusion propulsion concepts that have been investigated in the past employ some form of inertial or magnetic confinement separately, and are encumbered by the need for advanced drivers (e.g. laser) or steady-state magnetic confinement systems (e.g. superconductors) that have historically resulted in large, massive spacecraft designs. Here we present a comparatively new approach, Magnetized Target Fusion (MTF), which offers a nearer-term avenue for realizing the tremendous performance benefits of fusion propulsion. MTF attempts to combine the favorable attributes of both inertially and magnetically confined fusion to achieve both efficient and low-cost compressional plasma heating and energy confinement. The key advantage of MTF is its less demanding requirements for driver energy and power processing. Additional features include: 1) very low system masses and volumes, 2) high gain and relatively low waste heat, 3) substantial utilization of energy from product neutrons, 4) efficient, low peak-power drivers based on existing pulsed power technology, and 5) very high I(sub sp), specific power and thrust. MTF overcomes many of the problems associated with traditional fusion techniques, thus making it particularly attractive for space applications. I(sub sp) greater than 50,000 seconds and specific powers greater than 20 kilowatts/kilogram appear feasible using relatively near-term pulse power and plasma gun technology.

  19. Antimatter propulsion, status and prospects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howe, Steven D.; Hynes, Michael V.

    1986-01-01

    The use of advanced propulsion techniques must be considered if the currently envisioned launch date of the manned Mars mission were delayed until 2020 or later. Within the next thirty years, technological advances may allow such methods as beaming power to the ship, inertial-confinement fusion, or mass-conversion of antiprotons to become feasible. A propulsion system with an ISP of around 5000 s would allow the currently envisioned mission module to fly to Mars in 3 months and would require about one million pounds to be assembled in Earth orbit. Of the possible methods to achieve this, the antiproton mass-conversion reaction offers the highest potential, the greatest problems, and the most fascination. Increasing the production rates of antiprotons is a high priority task at facilities around the world. The application of antiprotons to propulsion requires the coupling of the energy released in the mass-conversion reaction to thrust-producing mechanisms. Recent proposals entail using the antiprotons to produce inertial confinement fusion or to produce negative muons which can catalyze fusion. By increasing the energy released per antiproton, the effective cost, (dollars/joule) can be reduced. These proposals and other areas of research can be investigated now. These short term results will be important in assessing the long range feasibility of an antiproton powered engine.

  20. Space station propulsion requirements study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilkinson, C. L.; Brennan, S. M.

    1985-01-01

    Propulsion system requirements to support Low Earth Orbit (LEO) manned space station development and evolution over a wide range of potential capabilities and for a variety of STS servicing and space station operating strategies are described. The term space station and the overall space station configuration refers, for the purpose of this report, to a group of potential LEO spacecraft that support the overall space station mission. The group consisted of the central space station at 28.5 deg or 90 deg inclinations, unmanned free-flying spacecraft that are both tethered and untethered, a short-range servicing vehicle, and a longer range servicing vehicle capable of GEO payload transfer. The time phasing for preferred propulsion technology approaches is also investigated, as well as the high-leverage, state-of-the-art advancements needed, and the qualitative and quantitative benefits of these advancements on STS/space station operations. The time frame of propulsion technologies applicable to this study is the early 1990's to approximately the year 2000.

  1. Engineering of the Magnetized Target Fusion Propulsion System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Statham, G.; White, S.; Adams, R. B.; Thio, Y. C. F.; Santarius, J.; Alexander, R.; Chapman, J.; Fincher, S.; Philips, A.; Polsgrove, T.

    2003-01-01

    Engineering details are presented for a magnetized target fusion (MTF) propulsion system designed to support crewed missions to the outer solar system. Basic operation of an MTF propulsion system is introduced. Structural, thermal, radiation-management and electrical design details are presented. The propellant storage and supply system design is also presented. A propulsion system mass estimate and associated performance figures are given. The advantages of helium-3 as a fusion fuel for an advanced MTF system are discussed.

  2. Development and Testing of Propulsion Health Management

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunter, Gary W.; Lekki, John D.; Simon, Donald L.

    2012-01-01

    An Integrated Vehicle Health Management system aims to maintain vehicle health through detection, diagnostics, state awareness, prognostics, and lastly, mitigation of detrimental situations for each of the vehicle subsystems and throughout the vehicle as a whole. This paper discusses efforts to advance Propulsion Health Management technology for in-flight applications to provide improved propulsion sensors measuring a range of parameters, improve ease of propulsion sensor implementation, and to assess and manage the health of gas turbine engine flow-path components. This combined work is intended to enable real-time propulsion state assessments to accurately determine the vehicle health, reduce loss of control, and to improve operator situational awareness. A unique aspect of this work is demonstration of these maturing technologies on an operational engine.

  3. The effect of technology advancements on the comparative advantages of electric versus chemical propulsion for a large cargo orbit transfer vehicle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rehder, J. J.; Wurster, K. E.

    1978-01-01

    Techniques for sizing electrically or chemically propelled orbit transfer vehicles and analyzing fleet requirements are used in a comparative analysis of the two concepts for various levels of traffic to geosynchronous orbit. The vehicle masses, fuel requirements, and fleet sizes are determined and translated into launch vehicle payload requirements. Technology projections beyond normal growth are made and their effect on the comparative advantages of the concepts is determined. A preliminary cost analysis indicates that although electric propulsion greatly reduces launch vehicle requirements substantial improvements in the cost and reusability of power systems must occur to make an electrically propelled vehicle competitive.

  4. ATF (Advanced Toroidal Facility) edge plasma turbulence studies using a fast reciprocating Langmuir probe

    SciTech Connect

    Uckan, T.; Hidalgo, C.; Bell, J.D.; Harris, J.H.; Dunlap, J.L.; Dyer, G.R.; Mioduszewski, P.K.; Wilgen, J.B. ); Ritz, C.P.; Wootton, A.J.; Rhodes, T.L.; Carter, K. . Fusion Research Center)

    1990-01-01

    Electrostatic turbulence on the edge of the Advanced Torodial Facility (ATF) torsatron is investigated experimentally with a fast reciprocating Langmuir probe (FRLP) array. Initial measurements of plasma electron density n{sub e} and temperature T{sub e} and fluctuations in density ({tilde n}{sub e}) and plasma floating potential ({tilde {phi}}{sub f}) are made in ECH plasmas at 1 T. At the last closed flux surface (LCFS, r/{bar a} {approximately}1), T{sub e} {approx} 20--40 eV and n{sub e} {approx} 10{sup 12} cm{sup {minus}3} for a line-averaged electron density {bar n}{sub e} = (3--6) {times} 10{sup 12} cm{sup {minus}3}. Relative fluctuation levels, as the FRLP is moved into core plasma where T{sub e} > 20 eV, are {tilde n}{sub e}/n{sub e} {approx} 5%, and e {tilde {phi}}{sub f}/T{sub e} {approx} 2{tilde n}{sub e}/n{sub e} about 2 cm inside the LCFS. The observed fluctuation spectra are broadband (40--300 kHz) with {bar k}{rho}{sub s} {le} 0.1, where {bar k} is the wavenumber of the fluctuations and {rho}{sub s} is the ion Larmor radius at the sound speed. The propagation direction of the fluctuations reverses to the electron diamagnetic direction around r/{bar a} < 1. The phase velocity and the electron drift velocity are comparable (v{sub ph} {approximately} v{sub de}). The fluctuation-induced particle flux is comparable to fluxes estimated from the particle balance using the H{sub {alpha}} spectroscopic measurements. Many of the features seen in these experiments resemble the features of ohmically heated plasmas in the Texas Experimental Tokamak (TEXT). 17 refs., 10 figs.

  5. Direct Energy Conversion for Nuclear Propulsion at Low Specific Mass

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scott, John H.

    2014-01-01

    The project will continue the FY13 JSC IR&D (October-2012 to September-2013) effort in Travelling Wave Direct Energy Conversion (TWDEC) in order to demonstrate its potential as the core of a high potential, game-changing, in-space propulsion technology. The TWDEC concept converts particle beam energy into radio frequency (RF) alternating current electrical power, such as can be used to heat the propellant in a plasma thruster. In a more advanced concept (explored in the Phase 1 NIAC project), the TWDEC could also be utilized to condition the particle beam such that it may transfer directed kinetic energy to a target propellant plasma for the purpose of increasing thrust and optimizing the specific impulse. The overall scope of the FY13 first-year effort was to build on both the 2012 Phase 1 NIAC research and the analysis and test results produced by Japanese researchers over the past twenty years to assess the potential for spacecraft propulsion applications. The primary objective of the FY13 effort was to create particle-in-cell computer simulations of a TWDEC. Other objectives included construction of a breadboard TWDEC test article, preliminary test calibration of the simulations, and construction of first order power system models to feed into mission architecture analyses with COPERNICUS tools. Due to funding cuts resulting from the FY13 sequestration, only the computer simulations and assembly of the breadboard test article were completed. The simulations, however, are of unprecedented flexibility and precision and were presented at the 2013 AIAA Joint Propulsion Conference. Also, the assembled test article will provide an ion current density two orders of magnitude above that available in previous Japanese experiments, thus enabling the first direct measurements of power generation from a TWDEC for FY14. The proposed FY14 effort will use the test article for experimental validation of the computer simulations and thus complete to a greater fidelity the

  6. Radioisotope Electric Propulsion (REP): A Near-Term Approach to Nuclear Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schmidt, George R.; Manzella, David H.; Kamhawi, Hani; Kremic, Tibor; Oleson, Steven R.; Dankanich, John W.; Dudzinski, Leonard A.

    2009-01-01

    Studies over the last decade have shown radioisotope-based nuclear electric propulsion to be enhancing and, in some cases, enabling for many potential robotic science missions. Also known as radioisotope electric propulsion (REP), the technology offers the performance advantages of traditional reactor-powered electric propulsion (i.e., high specific impulse propulsion at large distances from the Sun), but with much smaller, affordable spacecraft. Future use of REP requires development of radioisotope power sources with system specific powers well above that of current systems. The US Department of Energy and NASA have developed an advanced Stirling radioisotope generator (ASRG) engineering unit, which was subjected to rigorous flight qualification-level tests in 2008, and began extended lifetime testing later that year. This advancement, along with recent work on small ion thrusters and life extension technology for Hall thrusters, could enable missions using REP sometime during the next decade.

  7. In-Space Propulsion: Connectivity to In-Space Fabrication and Repair

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, L.; Harris, D.; Trausch, A.; Matloff, G. L.; Taylor, T.; Cutting, K.

    2005-01-01

    The connectivity between new in-space propulsion technologies and the ultimate development of an in-space fabrication and repair infrastructure are described in this Technical Memorandum. A number of advanced in-space propulsion technologies are being developed by NASA, many of which are directly relevant to the establishment of such an in-space infrastructure. These include aerocapture, advanced solar-electric propulsion, solar-thermal propulsion, advanced chemical propulsion, tethers, and solar photon sails. Other, further-term technologies have also been studied to assess their utility to the development of such an infrastructure.

  8. Expendable launch vehicle propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fuller, Paul N.

    1991-01-01

    The current status is reviewed of the U.S. Expendable Launch Vehicle (ELV) fleet, the international competition, and the propulsion technology of both domestic and foreign ELVs. The ELV propulsion technology areas where research, development, and demonstration are most needed are identified. These propulsion technology recommendations are based on the work performed by the Commercial Space Transportation Advisory Committee (COMSTAC), an industry panel established by the Dept. of Transportation.

  9. Field resonance propulsion concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holt, A. C.

    1979-01-01

    A propulsion concept was developed based on a proposed resonance between coherent, pulsed electromagnetic wave forms, and gravitational wave forms (or space-time metrics). Using this concept a spacecraft propulsion system potentially capable of galactic and intergalactic travel without prohibitive travel times was designed. The propulsion system utilizes recent research associated with magnetic field line merging, hydromagnetic wave effects, free-electron lasers, laser generation of megagauss fields, and special structural and containment metals. The research required to determine potential, field resonance characteristics and to evaluate various aspects of the spacecraft propulsion design is described.

  10. Xenon ion propulsion for orbit transfer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rawlin, V. K.; Patterson, M. J.; Gruber, R. P.

    1990-01-01

    For more than 30 years, NASA has conducted an ion propulsion program which has resulted in several experimental space flight demonstrations and the development of many supporting technologies. Technologies appropriate for geosynchronous stationkeeping, earth-orbit transfer missions, and interplanetary missions are defined and evaluated. The status of critical ion propulsion system elements is reviewed. Electron bombardment ion thrusters for primary propulsion have evolved to operate on xenon in the 5 to 10 kW power range. Thruster efficiencies of 0.7 and specific impulse values of 4000 s were documented. The baseline thruster currently under development by NASA LeRC includes ring-cusp magnetic field plasma containment and dished two-grid ion optics. Based on past experience and demonstrated simplifications, power processors for these thrusters should have approximately 500 parts, a mass of 40 kg, and an efficiency near 0.94. Thrust vector control, via individual thruster gimbals, is a mature technology. High pressure, gaseous xenon propellant storage and control schemes, using flight qualified hardware, result in propellant tankage fractions between 0.1 and 0.2. In-space and ground integration testing has demonstrated that ion propulsion systems can be successfully integrated with their host spacecraft. Ion propulsion system technologies are mature and can significantly enhance and/or enable a variety of missions in the nation's space propulsion program.

  11. Fishbone activity in experimental advanced superconducting tokamak neutral beam injection plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, Liqing; Zhang, Jizong; Chen, Kaiyun E-mail: lqhu@ipp.cas.cn; Hu, Liqun E-mail: lqhu@ipp.cas.cn; Li, Erzhong; Lin, Shiyao; Shi, Tonghui; Duan, Yanmin; Zhu, Yubao

    2015-12-15

    Repetitive fishbones near the trapped ion procession frequency were observed for the first time in the neutral beam injection high confinement plasmas in Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) tokamak, and diagnosed using a solid-state neutral particle analyzer based on a compact silicon photodiode together with an upgraded high spatial-temporal-resolution multi-arrays soft X-ray (SX) system. This 1/1 typical internal kink mode propagates in the ion-diamagnetism direction with a rotation speed faster than the bulk plasma in the plasma frame. From the SX measurements, this mode frequency is typical of chirping down and the energetic particle effect related to the twisting mode structure. This ion fishbone was found able to trigger a multiple core sawtooth crashes with edge-2/1 sideband modes, as well as to lead to a transition from fishbone to long lived saturated kink mode to fishbone. Furthermore, using SX tomography, a correlation between mode amplitude and mode frequency was found. Finally, a phenomenological prey–predator model was found to reproduce the fishbone nonlinear process well.

  12. Oxidation behavior of plasma sintered beryllium-titanium intermetallic compounds as an advanced neutron multiplier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jae-Hwan; Nakamichi, Masaru

    2013-07-01

    Beryllium intermetallic compounds (beryllides) such as Be12Ti are very promising candidates for advanced neutron multiplier materials in a demonstration fusion power reactor (DEMO). However, beryllides are too brittle to be fabricated either into pebble-type or rod-type shapes via conventional methods (i.e. arc melting and hot isostatic pressing). We have proposed a plasma sintering technique as a new method for beryllide fabrication, and our studies on the properties of plasma sintered beryllides are ongoing. In the present work, the oxidation properties of plasma sintered beryllides were investigated at 1273 K for 24 h in a dry air atmosphere to evaluate the high temperature properties of this material. Thermal gravimetry measurements indicate that specimens with larger fractions of Be12Ti phase corresponding to samples that have been sintered for longer time periods, exhibit superior oxidation properties. Our evaluation of the oxidation behavior of each phase in our beryllide samples is as follows: Be12Ti and Be17Ti2 both have good oxidation resistance, owing to the formation of dense and protective scales, while the Be and Be2Ti phases are mainly responsible for thermal-gravimetry (TG) weight gains, which is indicative of severe oxidation. We attribute the degradation in oxidation resistance specifically to Be2Ti that transforms into TiO2, and also find this phase to be the cause of deterioration in the mechanical properties of samples, owing to cracks near Be2Ti phase conglomerates.

  13. Fishbone activity in experimental advanced superconducting tokamak neutral beam injection plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Liqing; Zhang, Jizong; Chen, Kaiyun; Hu, Liqun; Li, Erzhong; Lin, Shiyao; Shi, Tonghui; Duan, Yanmin; Zhu, Yubao

    2015-12-01

    Repetitive fishbones near the trapped ion procession frequency were observed for the first time in the neutral beam injection high confinement plasmas in Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) tokamak, and diagnosed using a solid-state neutral particle analyzer based on a compact silicon photodiode together with an upgraded high spatial-temporal-resolution multi-arrays soft X-ray (SX) system. This 1/1 typical internal kink mode propagates in the ion-diamagnetism direction with a rotation speed faster than the bulk plasma in the plasma frame. From the SX measurements, this mode frequency is typical of chirping down and the energetic particle effect related to the twisting mode structure. This ion fishbone was found able to trigger a multiple core sawtooth crashes with edge-2/1 sideband modes, as well as to lead to a transition from fishbone to long lived saturated kink mode to fishbone. Furthermore, using SX tomography, a correlation between mode amplitude and mode frequency was found. Finally, a phenomenological prey-predator model was found to reproduce the fishbone nonlinear process well.

  14. Using advanced oxidation treatment for biofilm inactivation by varying water vapor content in air plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryota, Suganuma; Koichi, Yasuoka

    2015-09-01

    Biofilms are caused by environmental degradation in food factories and medical facilities. The inactivation of biofilms involves making them react with chemicals including chlorine, hydrogen peroxide, and ozone, although inactivation using chemicals has a potential problem because of the hazardous properties of the residual substance and hydrogen peroxide, which have slow reaction velocity. We successfully performed an advanced oxidation process (AOP) using air plasma. Hydrogen peroxide and ozone, which were used for the formation of OH radicals in our experiment, were generated by varying the amount of water vapor supplied to the plasma. By varying the content of the water included in the air, the main product was changed from air plasma. When we increased the water content in the air, hydrogen peroxide was produced, while ozone peroxide was produced when we decreased the water content in the air. By varying the amount of water vapor, we realized a 99.9% reduction in the amount of bacteria in the biofilm when we discharged humidified air only. This work was supported by JSPS KAKENHI Grant Number 25630104.

  15. Z-Pinch Magneto-Inertial Fusion Propulsion Engine Design Concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miernik, Janie H.; Statham, Geoffrey; Adams, Robert B.; Polsgrove, Tara; Fincher, Sharon; Fabisinski, Leo; Maples, C. Dauphne; Percy, Thomas K.; Cortez, Ross J.; Cassibry, Jason

    2011-01-01

    Fusion-based nuclear propulsion has the potential to enable fast interplanetary transportation. Due to the great distances between the planets of our solar system and the harmful radiation environment of interplanetary space, high specific impulse (Isp) propulsion in vehicles with high payload mass fractions must be developed to provide practical and safe vehicles for human spaceflight missions. Magneto-Inertial Fusion (MIF) is an approach which has been shown to potentially lead to a low cost, small fusion reactor/engine assembly (1). The Z-Pinch dense plasma focus method is an MIF concept in which a column of gas is compressed to thermonuclear conditions by an estimated axial current of approximately 100 MA. Recent advancements in experiments and the theoretical understanding of this concept suggest favorable scaling of fusion power output yield as I(sup 4) (2). The magnetic field resulting from the large current compresses the plasma to fusion conditions, and this is repeated over short timescales (10(exp -6) sec). This plasma formation is widely used in the field of Nuclear Weapons Effects (NWE) testing in the defense industry, as well as in fusion energy research. There is a wealth of literature characterizing Z-Pinch physics and existing models (3-5). In order to be useful in engineering analysis, a simplified Z-Pinch fusion thermodynamic model was developed to determine the quantity of plasma, plasma temperature, rate of expansion, energy production, etc. to calculate the parameters that characterize a propulsion system. The amount of nuclear fuel per pulse, mixture ratio of the D-T and nozzle liner propellant, and assumptions about the efficiency of the engine, enabled the sizing of the propulsion system and resulted in an estimate of the thrust and Isp of a Z-Pinch fusion propulsion system for the concept vehicle. MIF requires a magnetic nozzle to contain and direct the nuclear pulses, as well as a robust structure and radiation shielding. The structure

  16. FY2009 Annual Progress Report for Propulsion Materials

    SciTech Connect

    none,

    2010-01-16

    The Propulsion Materials program focuses on enabling and innovative materials technologies that are critical in improving the efficiency of advanced engines. Projects within the Propulsion Materials Program address materials concerns that directly impact the critical technical barriers in each of these programs—barriers such as fuel efficiency, thermal management, emissions reduction, and reduced manufacturing costs.

  17. A Future with Hybrid Electric Propulsion Systems: A NASA Perspective

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DelRosario, Ruben

    2014-01-01

    The presentation highlights a NASA perspective on Hybrid Electric Propulsion Systems for aeronautical applications. Discussed are results from NASA Advance Concepts Study for Aircraft Entering service in 2030 and beyond and the potential use of hybrid electric propulsion systems as a potential solution to the requirements for energy efficiency and environmental compatibility. Current progress and notional potential NASA research plans are presented.

  18. An overview of the Penn State Propulsion Engineering Research Center

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Merkle, Charles L.

    1991-01-01

    An overview of the Penn State Propulsion Engineering Research Center is presented. The following subject areas are covered: research objectives and long term perspective of the Center; current status and operational philosophy; and brief description of Center projects (combustion, fluid mechanics and heat transfer, materials compatibility, turbomachinery, and advanced propulsion concepts).

  19. Space Transportation Technology Workshop: Propulsion Research and Technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation gives an overview of the Space Transportation Technology Workshop topics, including Propulsion Research and Technology (PR&T) project level organization, FY 2001 - 2006 project roadmap, points of contact, foundation technologies, auxiliary propulsion technology, PR&T Low Cost Turbo Rocket, and PR&T advanced reusable technologies RBCC test bed.

  20. Pulsed Plasma Accelerator Modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goodman, M.; Kazeminezhad, F.; Owens, T.

    2009-01-01

    This report presents the main results of the modeling task of the PPA project. The objective of this task is to make major progress towards developing a new computational tool with new capabilities for simulating cylindrically symmetric 2.5 dimensional (2.5 D) PPA's. This tool may be used for designing, optimizing, and understanding the operation of PPA s and other pulsed power devices. The foundation for this task is the 2-D, cylindrically symmetric, magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) code PCAPPS (Princeton Code for Advanced Plasma Propulsion Simulation). PCAPPS was originally developed by Sankaran (2001, 2005) to model Lithium Lorentz Force Accelerators (LLFA's), which are electrode based devices, and are typically operated in continuous magnetic field to the model, and implementing a first principles, self-consistent algorithm to couple the plasma and power circuit that drives the plasma dynamics.

  1. Advanced Fuels Reactor using Aneutronic Rodless Ultra Low Aspect Ratio Tokamak Hydrogenic Plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ribeiro, Celso

    2015-11-01

    The use of advanced fuels for fusion reactor is conventionally envisaged for field reversed configuration (FRC) devices. It is proposed here a preliminary study about the use of these fuels but on an aneutronic Rodless Ultra Low Aspect Ratio (RULART) hydrogenic plasmas. The idea is to inject micro-size boron pellets vertically at the inboard side (HFS, where TF is very high and the tokamak electron temperature is relatively low because of profile), synchronised with a proton NBI pointed to this region. Therefore, p-B reactions should occur and alpha particles produced. These pellets will act as an edge-like disturbance only (cp. killer pellet, although the vertical HFS should make this less critical, since the unablated part should appear in the bottom of the device). The boron cloud will appear at midplance, possibly as a MARFE-look like. Scaling of the p-B reactions by varying the NBI energy should be compared with the predictions of nuclear physics. This could be an alternative to the FRC approach, without the difficulties of the optimization of the FRC low confinement time. Instead, a robust good tokamak confinement with high local HFS TF (enhanced due to the ultra low aspect ratio and low pitch angle) is used. The plasma central post makes the RULART concept attractive because of the proximity of NBI path and also because a fraction of born alphas will cross the plasma post and dragged into it in the direction of the central plasma post current, escaping vertically into a hole in the bias plate and reaching the direct electricity converter, such as in the FRC concept.

  2. Electron, Atomic, and Radiation Kinetics in Plasma Discharge Lighting: Advanced Models and Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giuliani, John L.

    2006-10-01

    Non-LTE discharges used in lighting sources provide an excellent testbed for understanding the interplay between plasma, atomic, and radiation physics. Standard models for the Hg fluorescent bulb include non-equilibrium kinetics for the species, but employ both a 0-D Boltzmann equation for the electron distribution function (EDF) and Holstein's probability-of-escape for radiation transport. These assumptions overlook some of the more interesting, and challenging, aspects of plasma lighting. The radial ambipolar potential requires the inclusion of the spatial gradient term in the inhomogeneous electron Boltzmann equation. The resulting EDF is found to depend on both electron energy and radial position [1]. Advanced radiation transport techniques account for non-local photo-pumping, line overlap within the Hg resonance lines, and partial frequency redistribution [2]. The results of our completely coupled model match the observed spatial distribution of Hg excited states and the line-of-sight intensity [3]. Due to environmental initiatives there is also recent interest in non-Hg discharges for high intensity lighting. One example is an RF electrodeless Mo-O-Ar plasma discharge bulb which operates by recycling the emitting Mo with an O catalyst. Based on atomic physics calculations for Mo [4], the kinetic pathways leading to visible emission can be identified [5] and explain the measured lighting efficiency of ˜40 lumens/watt of supplied power.[1] J. Appl. Phys., 94, p.62, 2003. [2] Plasma Sources Sci. Tech., 14, p.236, 2005. [3] J. Phys. D., 38, p.4180, 2005. [4] New J. Physics, 6, p.145, 2004. [5] J. Appl. Phys., 95, p.5284, 2004.

  3. Pulsed Fission Propulsion Concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    In the 1960's U.S. Government laboratories, under Project Orion, investigated a pulsed nuclear fission propulsion system. Small nuclear pulse units would be sequentially discharged from the aft end of the vehicle. A blast shield and shock absorber system would protect the crew and convert the shock loads into a continuous propulsive force.

  4. Nuclear thermal propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bennett, Gary L.

    1991-01-01

    This document is presented in viewgraph form, and the topics covered include the following: (1) the direct fission-thermal propulsion process; (2) mission applications of direct fission-thermal propulsion; (3) nuclear engines for rocket vehicles; (4) manned mars landers; and (5) particle bed reactor design.

  5. Electric Propulsion Apparatus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Patterson, Michael J. (Inventor)

    2013-01-01

    An electric propulsion machine includes an ion thruster having an annular discharge chamber housing an anode having a large surface area. The ion thruster includes flat annular ion optics with a small span to gap ratio. Optionally, a second electric propulsion thruster may be disposed in a cylindrical space disposed within an interior of the annulus.

  6. Breakthrough Propulsion Physics Project: Project Management Methods

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Millis, Marc G.

    2004-01-01

    To leap past the limitations of existing propulsion, the NASA Breakthrough Propulsion Physics (BPP) Project seeks further advancements in physics from which new propulsion methods can eventually be derived. Three visionary breakthroughs are sought: (1) propulsion that requires no propellant, (2) propulsion that circumvents existing speed limits, and (3) breakthrough methods of energy production to power such devices. Because these propulsion goals are presumably far from fruition, a special emphasis is to identify credible research that will make measurable progress toward these goals in the near-term. The management techniques to address this challenge are presented, with a special emphasis on the process used to review, prioritize, and select research tasks. This selection process includes these key features: (a) research tasks are constrained to only address the immediate unknowns, curious effects or critical issues, (b) reliability of assertions is more important than the implications of the assertions, which includes the practice where the reviewers judge credibility rather than feasibility, and (c) total scores are obtained by multiplying the criteria scores rather than by adding. Lessons learned and revisions planned are discussed.

  7. Roadmap for In-Space Propulsion Technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meyer, Michael; Johnson, Les; Palaszewski, Bryan; Coote, David; Goebel, Dan; White, Harold

    2012-01-01

    NASA has created a roadmap for the development of advanced in-space propulsion technologies for the NASA Office of the Chief Technologist (OCT). This roadmap was drafted by a team of subject matter experts from within the Agency and then independently evaluated, integrated and prioritized by a National Research Council (NRC) panel. The roadmap describes a portfolio of in-space propulsion technologies that could meet future space science and exploration needs, and shows their traceability to potential future missions. Mission applications range from small satellites and robotic deep space exploration to space stations and human missions to Mars. Development of technologies within the area of in-space propulsion will result in technical solutions with improvements in thrust, specific impulse (Isp), power, specific mass (or specific power), volume, system mass, system complexity, operational complexity, commonality with other spacecraft systems, manufacturability, durability, and of course, cost. These types of improvements will yield decreased transit times, increased payload mass, safer spacecraft, and decreased costs. In some instances, development of technologies within this area will result in mission-enabling breakthroughs that will revolutionize space exploration. There is no single propulsion technology that will benefit all missions or mission types. The requirements for in-space propulsion vary widely according to their intended application. This paper provides an updated summary of the In-Space Propulsion Systems technology area roadmap incorporating the recommendations of the NRC.

  8. Hybrid Propulsion Technology Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jensen, G. E.; Holzman, A. L.

    1990-01-01

    Future launch systems of the United States will require improvements in booster safety, reliability, and cost. In order to increase payload capabilities, performance improvements are also desirable. The hybrid rocket motor (HRM) offers the potential for improvements in all of these areas. The designs are presented for two sizes of hybrid boosters, a large 4.57 m (180 in.) diameter booster duplicating the Advanced Solid Rocket Motor (ASRM) vacuum thrust-time profile and smaller 2.44 m (96 in.), one-quater thrust level booster. The large booster would be used in tandem, while eight small boosters would be used to achieve the same total thrust. These preliminary designs were generated as part of the NASA Hybrid Propulsion Technology Program. This program is the first phase of an eventual three-phaes program culminating in the demonstration of a large subscale engine. The initial trade and sizing studies resulted in preferred motor diameters, operating pressures, nozzle geometry, and fuel grain systems for both the large and small boosters. The data were then used for specific performance predictions in terms of payload and the definition and selection of the requirements for the major components: the oxidizer feed system, nozzle, and thrust vector system. All of the parametric studies were performed using realistic fuel regression models based upon specific experimental data.

  9. Laser Propulsion - Quo Vadis

    SciTech Connect

    Bohn, Willy L.

    2008-04-28

    First, an introductory overview of the different types of laser propulsion techniques will be given and illustrated by some historical examples. Second, laser devices available for basic experiments will be reviewed ranging from low power lasers sources to inertial confinement laser facilities. Subsequently, a status of work will show the impasse in which the laser propulsion community is currently engaged. Revisiting the basic relations leads to new avenues in ablative and direct laser propulsion for ground based and space based applications. Hereby, special attention will be devoted to the impact of emerging ultra-short pulse lasers on the coupling coefficient and specific impulse. In particular, laser sources and laser propulsion techniques will be tested in microgravity environment. A novel approach to debris removal will be discussed with respect to the Satellite Laser Ranging (SRL) facilities. Finally, some non technical issues will be raised aimed at the future prospects of laser propulsion in the international community.

  10. Multi-purpose utility of circulating plasma DNA testing in patients with advanced cancers.

    PubMed

    Perkins, Geraldine; Yap, Timothy A; Pope, Lorna; Cassidy, Amy M; Dukes, Juliet P; Riisnaes, Ruth; Massard, Christophe; Cassier, Philippe A; Miranda, Susana; Clark, Jeremy; Denholm, Katie A; Thway, Khin; Gonzalez De Castro, David; Attard, Gerhardt; Molife, L Rhoda; Kaye, Stan B; Banerji, Udai; de Bono, Johann S

    2012-01-01

    Tumor genomic instability and selective treatment pressures result in clonal disease evolution; molecular stratification for molecularly targeted drug administration requires repeated access to tumor DNA. We hypothesized that circulating plasma DNA (cpDNA) in advanced cancer patients is largely derived from tumor, has prognostic utility, and can be utilized for multiplex tumor mutation sequencing when repeat biopsy is not feasible. We utilized the Sequenom MassArray System and OncoCarta panel for somatic mutation profiling. Matched samples, acquired from the same patient but at different time points were evaluated; these comprised formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) archival tumor tissue (primary and/or metastatic) and cpDNA. The feasibility, sensitivity, and specificity of this high-throughput, multiplex mutation detection approach was tested utilizing specimens acquired from 105 patients with solid tumors referred for participation in Phase I trials of molecularly targeted drugs. The median cpDNA concentration was 17 ng/ml (range: 0.5-1600); this was 3-fold higher than in healthy volunteers. Moreover, higher cpDNA concentrations associated with worse overall survival; there was an overall survival (OS) hazard ratio of 2.4 (95% CI 1.4, 4.2) for each 10-fold increase in cpDNA concentration and in multivariate analyses, cpDNA concentration, albumin, and performance status remained independent predictors of OS. These data suggest that plasma DNA in these cancer patients is largely derived from tumor. We also observed high detection concordance for critical 'hot-spot' mutations (KRAS, BRAF, PIK3CA) in matched cpDNA and archival tumor tissue, and important differences between archival tumor and cpDNA. This multiplex sequencing assay can be utilized to detect somatic mutations from plasma in advanced cancer patients, when safe repeat tumor biopsy is not feasible and genomic analysis of archival tumor is deemed insufficient. Overall, circulating nucleic acid

  11. CFD propels NASP propulsion progress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Povinelli, Louis A.; Dwoyer, Douglas L.; Green, Michael J.

    1990-07-01

    The most complex aerothermodynamics encountered in the National Aerospace Plane (NASP) propulsion system are associated with the fuel-mixing and combustion-reaction flows of its combustor section; adequate CFD tools must be developed to model shock-wave systems, turbulent hydrogen/air mixing, flow separation, and combustion. Improvements to existing CFD codes have involved extension from two dimensions to three, as well as the addition of finite-rate hydrogen-air chemistry. A novel CFD code for the treatment of reacting flows throughout the NASP, designated GASP, uses the most advanced upwind-differencing technology.

  12. NASA's Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Mike; Mitchell, Sonny; Kim, Tony; Borowski, Stan; Power, Kevin; Scott, John; Belvin, Anthony; Clement, Steve

    2015-01-01

    HEOMD's (Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate) AES (Advanced Exploration Systems) Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) project is making significant progress. First of four FY 2015 milestones achieved this month. Safety is the highest priority for NTP (as with other space systems). After safety comes affordability. No centralized capability for developing, qualifying, and utilizing an NTP system. Will require a strong, closely integrated team. Tremendous potential benefits from NTP and other space fission systems. No fundamental reason these systems cannot be developed and utilized in a safe, affordable fashion.

  13. Emerging Physics for Novel Field Propulsion Science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hauser, Jochem; Dröscher, Walter

    2010-01-01

    All space vehicles in use today need some kind of fuel for operation. The basic physics underlying this propulsion principle severely limits the specific impulse and/or available thrust. Launch capabilities from the surface of the Earth require huge amounts of fuel. Hence, space flight, as envisaged by von Braun in the early 50s of the last century, will not be possible using this concept. Only if novel physical principles are found can these limits be overcome. Gravitational field propulsion is based on the generation of gravitational (gravity-like) fields by manmade devices. In other words, gravity-like fields should be experimentally controllable. Present physics believes that there are four fundamental interactions: strong (nuclei), weak (radioactive decay), electromagnetism and Newtonian gravitation. As experience has shown for the last six decades, none of these physical interactions is suitable as a basis for novel space propulsion. None of the advanced physical theories like string theory or quantum gravity, go beyond these four known interactions. On the contrary, recent results from causal dynamical triangulation simulations indicate that wormholes in spacetime do not seem to exist, and thus even this type of exotic space travel may well be impossible. Recently, novel physical concepts were published that might lead to advanced space propulsion technology, represented by two additional long range gravitational-like force fields that would be both attractive and repulsive, resulting from interaction of gravity with electromagnetism. A propulsion technology, based on these novel long range fields, would be working without propellant.

  14. Activities of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1986-01-01

    Work accomplished by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) under contract to NASA in 1985 is described. The work took place in the areas of flight projects, space science, geodynamics, materials science, advanced technology, defense and civil programs, telecommunications systems, and institutional activities.

  15. Propulsion opportunities for future commuter aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strack, W. C.

    1982-01-01

    Circa 1990 propulsion improvement concepts are discussed for 1000 to 5000 SHP conventional turboprop powerplants including engines, gearboxes, and propellers. Cycle selection, power plant configurations and advanced technology elements are defined and evaluated using average stage length DOC for commuter aircraft as the primary merit criterion.

  16. Collisionality scaling of turbulence and transport in advanced inductive plasmas in DIII-D

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Z.; McKee, G. R.; Petty, C.; Luce, T.; Chen, X.; Holland, C.; Rhodes, T.; Schmitz, L.; Wang, G.; Zeng, L.; Marinoni, A.; Solomon, W.; DIII-D Team

    2015-11-01

    The collisionality scaling of multiscale turbulence properties and thermal transport characteristics in high-beta, high confinement Advanced Inductive (AI) plasmas was determined via systematic dimensionless scaling experiments on DIII-D. Preliminary estimate indicates a weak collisionality dependence of energy confinement as v* varied by a factor of ~2. Electron density and scaled (~Bt2) temperature profiles are well matched in the scan. Interestingly, low-k density fluctuation amplitudes are observed to decrease at lower v* near ρ ~ 0 . 75 . Ion and electron thermal transport values, computed with ONETWO using experimentally measured profiles and sources, will be presented, along with multi-scale turbulence measurements obtained with various fluctuation diagnostics. Altering collisionality should change the relative contribution of different modes to transport.

  17. FY2011 Annual Progress Report for Propulsion Materials

    SciTech Connect

    Davis, Patrick B.; Schutte, Carol L.; Gibbs, Jerry L.

    2011-12-01

    Annual Progress Report for Propulsion Materials focusing on enabling and innovative materials technologies that are critical in improving the efficiency of advanced engines by providing enabling materials support for combustion, hybrid, and power electronics development.

  18. Propulsion control and control theory: A new research focus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeller, J. R.

    1980-01-01

    Technological developments necessary for the implementation of advanced digital control concepts for aircraft propulsion are identified and discussed. Developments associated with the replacement analog controllers with digital control systems, sensors and actuators, and control modes and software are reported.

  19. Pulsed Plasma Thruster (PPT) Technology: Earth Observing-1 PPT Operational and Advanced Components Being Developed

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pencil, Eric J.; Benson, Scott W.; Arrington, Lynn A.; Frus, John; Hoskins, W. Andrew; Burton, Rodney

    2003-01-01

    In 2002 the pulsed plasma thruster (PPT) mounted on the Earth Observing-1 spacecraft was operated successfully in orbit. The two-axis thruster system is fully incorporated in the attitude determination and control system and is being used to automatically counteract disturbances in the pitch axis of the spacecraft. The first tests conducted in space demonstrated the full range of PPT operation, followed by calibration of control torques from the PPT in the attitude control system. Then the spacecraft was placed in PPT control mode. To date, it has operated for about 30 hr. The PPT successfully controlled pitch momentum during wheel de-spin, solar array acceleration and deceleration during array rewind, and environmental torques in nominal operating conditions. Images collected with the Advanced Landsat Imager during PPT operation have demonstrated that there was no degradation in comparison to full momentum wheel control. In addition, other experiments have been performed to interrogate the effects of PPT operation on communication packages and light reflection from spacecraft surfaces. Future experiments will investigate the possibility of orbit-raising maneuvers, spacecraft roll, and concurrent operation with the Hyperion imager. Future applications envisioned for pulsed plasma thrusters include longer life, higher precision, multiaxis thruster configurations for three-axis attitude control systems or high-precision, formationflying systems. Advanced components, such as a "dry" mica-foil capacitor, a wear-resistant spark plug, and a multichannel power processing unit have been developed under contract with Unison Industries, General Dynamics, and C.U. Aerospace. Over the last year, evaluation tests have been conducted to determine power processing unit efficiency, atmospheric functionality, vacuum functionality, thruster performance evaluation, thermal performance, and component life.

  20. Mechanisms Underpinning Increased Plasma Creatinine Levels in Patients Receiving Vemurafenib for Advanced Melanoma

    PubMed Central

    Hurabielle, Charlotte; Pillebout, Evangéline; Stehlé, Thomas; Pagès, Cécile; Roux, Jennifer; Schneider, Pierre; Chevret, Sylvie; Chaffaut, Cendrine; Boutten, Anne; Mourah, Samia; Basset-Seguin, Nicole; Vidal-Petiot, Emmanuelle; Lebbé, Céleste; Flamant, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Context Serum creatinine has been reported to increase in patients receiving Vemurafenib, yet neither the prevalence nor the mechanism of this adverse event are known. Objective We aimed to evaluate the frequency and the mechanisms of increases in plasma creatinine level in patients receiving Vemurafenib for advanced melanoma. Methods We performed a retrospective monocentric study including consecutive patients treated with Vemurafenib for an advanced melanoma. We collected clinical and biological data concerning renal function before introduction of Vemurafenib and in the course of monthly follow-up visits from March 2013 to December 2014. Cystatin C-derived glomerular filtration rate was evaluated before and after Vemurafenib initiation, as increase in serum cystatin C is specific to a decrease in the glomerular filtration rate. We also performed thorough renal explorations in 3 patients, with measurement of tubular secretion of creatinine before and after Vemurafenib initiation and a renal biopsy in 2 patients. Results 70 patients were included: 97% of them displayed an immediate, and thereafter stable, increase in creatinine (+22.8%) after Vemurafenib initiation. In 44/52 patients in whom Vemurafenib was discontinued, creatinine levels returned to baseline. Serum cystatin C increased, although proportionally less than serum creatinine, showing that creatinine increase under vemurafenib was indeed partly due to a renal function impairment. In addition, renal explorations demonstrated that Vemurafenib induced an inhibition of creatinine tubular secretion. Conclusion Thus, Vemurafenib induces a dual mechanism of increase in plasma creatinine with both an inhibition of creatinine tubular secretion and slight renal function impairment. However, this side effect is mostly reversible when Vemurafenib is discontinued, and should not lead physicians to discontinue the treatment if it is effective. PMID:26930506