Advanced Electric Propulsion Diagnostics


Bundesmann C. *, Scholze F. **, Neumann H. ***

Leibniz Institute of Surface Modification,

**e-mail: frank.scholze@iom


We set up an advanced diagnostic system for in-situ characterization of electric propulsion thrusters. The system uses a high precision 5-axis positioning system and several diagnostic tools, such as a telemicroscope, a laser head, a pyrometer, a Faraday probe and a plasma monitor, for gathering a comprehensive set of performance parameters of electric propulsion thrusters, including, for instance, erosion of lifetime limiting mechanical parts, surface temperature of selected thruster parts, current density distribution, ion energy distribution and beam composition. The capabilities of the system are, exemplarily, demonstrated for a gridded ion thruster and a Hall-effect thruster.


electric propulsion; in-situ diagnostics; telemicroscope; laser head; pyrometer; Faraday probe; plasma monitor; gridded ion thruster; Hall effect thruster

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