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A 9700-hour durability test of a five centimeter diameter ion thrusterA modified Hughes SIT-5 thruster was life-tested at the Lewis Research Center. The final 2700 hours of the test are described with a charted history of thruster operating parameters and off-normal events. Performance and operating characteristics were nearly constant throughout the test except for neutralizer heater power requirements and accelerator drain current. A post-shutdown inspection revealed sputter erosion of ion chamber components and component flaking of sputtered metal. Several flakes caused beamlet divergence and anomalous grid erosion, causing the test to be terminated. All sputter erosion sources were identified.
Document ID
19730022009
Document Type
Conference Paper
Authors
Nakanishi, S. (NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Finke, R. C. (NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Date Acquired
September 2, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1973
Subject Category
PROPULSION SYSTEMS
Report/Patent Number
NASA-TM-X-68284
E-7624
Meeting Information
Propulsion Specialist Conf.(Lake Tahoe, NV)
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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