Performance of bare-tether systems under varying magnetic and plasma conditions

Estes, Robert D. and Sanmartín Losada, Juan Ramón and Martínez-Sánchez, M. (2000). Performance of bare-tether systems under varying magnetic and plasma conditions. "Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets", v. 37 (n. 2); pp. 197-204. ISSN 0022-4650. https://doi.org/10.2514/2.3566.

Description

Title: Performance of bare-tether systems under varying magnetic and plasma conditions
Author/s:
  • Estes, Robert D.
  • Sanmartín Losada, Juan Ramón
  • Martínez-Sánchez, M.
Item Type: Article
Título de Revista/Publicación: Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets
Date: 2000
Volume: 37
Subjects:
Faculty: E.T.S. de Ingeniería Aeronáutica y del Espacio (UPM)
Department: Física Aplicada a la Ingeniería Aeronáutica [hasta 2014]
Creative Commons Licenses: Recognition - No derivative works - Non commercial

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Abstract

Electrodynamic tethered systems, in which an exposed portion of the conducting tether itself collects electrons from the ionosphere, promise to attain currents of 10 A or more in low Earth orbit. For the first time, another desirable feature of such bare-tether systems is reported and analyzed in detail: Collection by a bare tether is relatively insensitive to variations in electron density that are regularly encountered on each revolution of an orbit. This self-adjusting property of bare-tether systems occurs because the electron-collecting area on the tether is not fixed, but extends along its positively biased portion, and because the current varies as collecting length to a power greater than unity. How this adjustment to density variations follows from the basic collection law of thin cylinders is shown. The effect of variations in the motionally induced tether voltage is also analyzed. Both power and thruster modes are considered. The performance of bare-tether systems to tethered systems is compared using passive spherical collectors of fixed area, taking into consideration recent experimental results. Calculations taking into account motional voltage and plasma density around a realistic orbit for bare-tether systems suitable for space station applications are also presented.

More information

Item ID: 26613
DC Identifier: http://oa.upm.es/26613/
OAI Identifier: oai:oa.upm.es:26613
DOI: 10.2514/2.3566
Official URL: http://arc.aiaa.org/doi/abs/10.2514/2.3566?journalCode=jsr
Deposited by: Biblioteca ETSI Aeronauticos
Deposited on: 26 May 2014 08:33
Last Modified: 22 Sep 2014 11:42
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