Transport of Sputtered Carbon During Ground-Based Life Testing of Ion Thrusters
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- High voltage, high power electron bombardment ion thrusters needed for deep space missions will be required to be operated for long durations in space as well as during ground laboratory life testing. Carbon based ion optics are being considered for such thrusters. The sputter deposition of carbon and arc vaporized carbon flakes from long duration operation of ion thrusters can result in deposition on insulating surfaces, causing them to become conducting. Because the sticking coefficient is less than one, secondary deposition needs to be considered to assure that shorting of critical components does not occur. The sticking coefficient for sputtered carbon and arc vaporized carbon is measured as well as directional ejection distribution data for carbon that does not stick upon first impact.
- NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) Collection.
- Document ID: 20050186905.
AIAA Paper 2005-4413.
Joint Propulsion Conference; 10-13 Jul. 2005; Tuscon, AZ; United States.
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