DLR’s Test Facility STG-ET


Neumann A.

Германский центр авиации и космонавтики, Linder Höhe, 51147, Cologne, Germany

e-mail: a.neumann@dlr.de


Chemical and cold gas thruster plume flow and plume spacecraft interaction are subject of research and application at the German Aerospace Center, DLR, Germany, since about three decades. DLR is extending these activities in Göttingen to cover electric space propulsion testing and thruster investigation. For this purpose a new high vacuum facility, named STG-ET, has been built especially for electric propulsion testing. The vacuum chamber measures 12.2 m in length and 5 m in diameter. The design focus is on plume interaction with spacecraft components and on long-term tests. The facility will be equipped with advanced measurement methods for plasma analysis and thrust and thrust vector measurement. Inauguration of the facility took place in October 2011. This paper describes the facility, special design features, and first tests performed in the vacuum chamber.

Ключевые слова:

vacuum chamber; electric space propulsion; xenon; thruster; cryopump

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