11,924 research outputs found

    Closed Loop solar array-ion thruster system with power control circuitry

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    A power control circuit connected between a solar array and an ion thruster receives voltage and current signals from the solar array. The control circuit multiplies the voltage and current signals together to produce a power signal which is differentiated with respect to time. The differentiator output is detected by a zero crossing detector and, after suitable shaping, the detector output is phase compared with a clock in a phase demodulator. An integrator receives no output from the phase demodulator when the operating point is at the maximum power but is driven toward the maximum power point for non-optimum operation. A ramp generator provides minor variations in the beam current reference signal produced by the integrator in order to obtain the first derivative of power

    Self-reconfiguring solar cell system

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    A self-reconfiguring solar cell array is disclosed wherein some of the cells are switched so that they can be either in series or in shunt within the array. This feature of series or parallel switching of cells allows the array to match the load to achieve maximum power transfer. Automatic control is used to determine the conditions for maximum power operation and to switch the array into the appropriate configuration necessary to transfer maximum power to the load

    Simplified dc to dc converter

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    A dc to dc converter which can start with a shorted output and which regulates output voltage and current is described. Voltage controlled switches directed current through the primary of a transformer the secondary of which includes virtual reactance. The switching frequency of the switches is appropriately varied to increase the voltage drop across the virtual reactance in the secondary winding to which there is connected a low impedance load. A starting circuit suitable for voltage switching devices is provided

    New energy storage concept uses tapes

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    Energy storage system uses movable permeable tapes with cathode and electrolyte material that is drawn across an anode to produce electric power. The system features long shelf life, high efficiency, and flexible operation

    Simplification of power electronics for ion thruster neutralizers

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    A need exists for less complex and lower cost ion thruster systems. Design approaches and the demonstration of neutralizer power electronics for relaxed neutralizer keeper, tip heater, and vaporizer requirements are discussed. The neutralizer circuitry is operated from a 200 to 400 V bus and demonstrates an order of magnitude reduction in parts count. Furthermore, a new technique is described for regulating tip heater power and automatically switching over to provide keeper power with only four additional components. A new design to control the flow rate of the neutralizer with one integrated circuit is also presented

    Simplified power supplies for ion thrusters

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    The initial development and demonstration of power supplies with an order of magnitude reduction in parts count, leading to increased reliability at lower weight, while still maintaining thrust system performance are discussed. Two new self-regulating keeper power supply circuits were developed and tested. One supply comprises 14 parts and uses an input voltage range of 18 to 36 volts, the other operates from 200 to 400 volts and requires 22 components. A technique for controlling heater power is also demonstrated

    Power electronics for a 1-kilowatt arc jet thruster

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    After more than two decades, new space mission requirements have revived interest in arcjet systems. The preliminary development and demonstration of new, high efficiency, power electronic concepts for start up and steady state control of dc arcjets is reported. The design comprises a pulse width modulated power converter which is closed loop configured to give fast current control. An inductor, in series with the arcjet, serves the dual role of providing instantaneous current control, as well as a high voltage arc ignition pulse. Benchmark efficiency, transient response, regulation, and ripple data are presented. Tests with arcjets demonstrate that the power electronics breadboard can start thrusters consistently with no apparent damage and transfer reliably to the nondestructive high voltage arc mode in less than a second

    The 5-kW arcjet power electronics

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    The initial design and evaluation of a 5 kW arcjet power electronics breadboard which as been integrated with a modified 1 kW design laboratory arcjet is presented. A single stage, 5 kW full bridge, pulse width modulated (PWM), power converter was developed which was phase shift regulated. The converter used metal oxide semiconductor field effect transistor (MOSFET) power switches and incorporated current mode control and an integral arcjet pulse ignition circuit. The unoptimized power efficiency was 93.5 and 93.9 percent at 5 kW and 50A output at input voltages of 130 and 150V, respectively. Line and load current regulation at 50A output was within one percent. The converter provided up to 6.6 kW to the arcjet with simulated ammonia used as a propellant
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