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performance evaluation of the russian spt-100 thruster at nasa lercPerformance measurements of a Russian flight-model SPT-100 thruster were obtained as part of a comprehensive program to evaluate engineering issues pertinent to integration with Western spacecraft. Power processing was provided by a US Government developed laboratory power conditioner. When received the thruster had been subjected to only a few hours of acceptance testing by the manufacturer. Accumulated operating time during this study totalled 148 h and included operation of both cathodes. Cathode flow fraction was controlled both manually and using the flow splitter contained within the supplied xenon flow controller. Data were obtained at current levels ranging from 3 A to 5 A and thruster voltages ranging from 200 V to 300 V. Testing centered on the design power of 1.35 kW with a discharge current of 4.5 A. The effects of facility pressure on thruster operation were examined by varying the pressure via injection of xenon into the vacuum chamber. The facility pressure had a significant effect on thruster performance and stability at the conditions tested. Periods of current instabilities were noted throughout the testing period and became more frequent as testing progressed. Performance during periods of stability agreed with previous data obtained in Russian laboratories.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Sankovic, John M.
(NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Hamley, John A.
(NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Haag, Thomas W.
(NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Date Acquired
September 6, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1994
Subject Category
Report/Patent Number
NAS 1.15:106401
Meeting Information
IEPC Conference(Seattle, WA)
Funding Number(s)
PROJECT: RTOP 506-42-31
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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