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Microsatellite technology has become increasingly popular in recent years as it can offer significant cost savings, higher reliability, and is generally more affordable for a large variety of commercial applications. Since many microsatellite missions require considerable propulsion capabilities, miniaturization of the propulsion subsystem is critical in(More)
Although several operational codes are available for the prediction of plume dynamics of Hall thrusters and their interactions with spacecraft surfaces, their coverage of the range of physical phenomena involved and their ability to model complex geometries and material combinations has tended to be fairly restricted. We have initiated the development of a(More)
Hall thrusters and other types of electric propulsion have become a tempting alternative to traditional chemical propulsion systems due to the high specific impulses they provide at relatively high efficiencies. Unlike conventional chemical propulsion systems, electric propulsion devices do not rely on the internal energy stored within their propellant.(More)
A full Particle-In-Cell code, written by James Szabo [23], was used to model a 50W TAL and 3kW SPT thruster. This code treats single and double ions, neutrals and electrons as particles, moved forward by a leapfrog algorithm at each timestep, matching the lowest of the plasma and the cyclotron times. At the end of each timestep, a successive-over-relaxation(More)
For a typical satellite constellation design problem, sometimes there are two conflicting goals. On one hand one wishes to provide continuous coverage of a particular area. On the other hand one would like to use the minimum number of satellites as possible. For coverage locations nearer the equator, these requirements are easily fulfilled by using a(More)