Thruster

33-kW Nested Channel Magnetically-Shielded Hall Thruster (N30)


The N30 after first assembly.

Developed
2018-2019
Approx. Specs.
Ø50 cm x 15 cm, 100 kg
Tested at PEPL
2019 – ongoing
Developer
PEPL, NASA JPL

The N30 is a 30-kW class dual-channel magnetically shielded Hall thruster. The thruster was developed by the University of Michigan in collaboration with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. This new thruster provides a testbed for nested Hall thruster physics and technology development. The inner channel of the N30 shares the geometry, anode/gas distributor, and near-field magnetic field shape with the H9, a 9 kW magnetically shielded Hall thruster. This allows for direct comparisons between the inner channel and the H9. The outer channel also provides magnetic shielding up to 800 V, with a total discharge power of 33 kW in dual channel mode. A new lanthanum-hexaboride cathode was designed to enable high current operation while still fitting the form factor of the H9. Characterization of the inner channel indicates a peak thrust of 451 mN and peak efficiency of 65% at 600 V, and peak specific impulse of 2830 seconds at 800 V. Performance testing is on-going for other firing configurations and all results thus far indicate state-of-the-art performance.

Selected Publications


  • Impact of Neutral Density on the Operation of High-Power Magnetically Shielded Hall Thrusters

    Cusson, Sarah E.

    University of Michigan, Ph.D. Dissertation, 2019

  • Investigation of the Hall Thruster Breathing Mode

    Dale, Ethan T.

    University of Michigan, Ph.D. Dissertation, 2020