Kinetic Simulations of Plasma Plume Potential in a Vacuum Chamber
Direct simulation Monte Carlo and particle-in-cell simulations are carried out to study the potential of a mesothermal plasma plume in a vacuum chamber. The results show that the beam potential with respect to the ambient in a vacuum chamber is different from that in space because the facility plasma can prematurely terminate the plume expansion process. As a result, the plume potential measured in a vacuum chamber may be significantly lower than that under the in-space condition. This can lead to underestimation of the backflow of charge-exchange ions and ionized contaminants in plasma thruster plume modeling.
J. J. Wang et al., "Kinetic Simulations of Plasma Plume Potential in a Vacuum Chamber," IEEE Transactions on Plasma Science, vol. 43, no. 9, pp. 3047-3053, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), Jul 2015.
The definitive version is available at https://doi.org/10.1109/TPS.2015.2457912
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Keywords and Phrases
Charge transfer; Monte Carlo methods; Thermal plumes; Charge exchanges; Direct simulation Monte Carlo; Kinetic simulation; Particle-in-cell simulations; Plasma thrusters; Plume expansion; Space conditions; Vacuum chambers; Plasma simulation; Particle-in-cell (PIC); Plasma beam emission; Plasma plume potential; Vacuum chamber testing
International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)
Article - Journal
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