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dc.contributor.authorBrieda, Lubosen_US
dc.date.accessioned2014-03-14T20:40:33Z
dc.date.available2014-03-14T20:40:33Z
dc.date.issued2005-06-02en_US
dc.identifier.otheretd-06262005-233343en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10919/33755
dc.description.abstractThis thesis describes development of the DRACO plasma simulation code. DRACO is an electro-static (ES) code which uses the particle-in-cell (PIC) formulation to track plasma particles through a computational domain, and operates within the Air Force COLISEUM framework. The particles are tracked on a non-standard mesh, which combines the benefits of a Cartesian mesh with the surface-resolving power of an unstructured mesh. DRACO contains its own mesher, called VOLCAR, which is also described in this work. DRACO was applied to a fully kinetic simulation of an ion-beam neutralization. The thruster configuration and running parameters were based on the NASA's 40cm NEXT ion thruster. The neutralization process was divided into three steps. Electron dynamics was studied by assuming an initial beam neutralization, which was accomplished by injecting both electrons and ions from the optics. Performing the simulation on a full-sized domain with cell size much greater than the Debye length resulted in a formation of a virtual anode. Decrease of the cell size to match the Debye length was not feasible, since it would require a million-fold increase in the number of simulation nodes. Instead, a scaling scheme was devised. Simulations were performed on thruster scaled down by a factor of 100, but its operating parameters were also adjusted such that the produced plasma environment did not change. Loss of electrons at the boundary of the finite simulation domain induced a numerical instability. The instability resulted in a strong axial electric field which sucked out electrons from the beam. It was removed by introducing an energy based particle boundary condition. Combination of surface scaling and energy boundary resulted in physically sound simulation results. Comparison were made between the Maxwellian and polytropic temperatures, as well as between simulation electron density and one predicted by the Boltzmann relationship. The cathode was modeled individually from the beam by introducing a positively charged collector plate at a distance corresponding to the beam edge. The local Debye length at the cathode tip was too small to be resolved by the mesh, even if mesh-refinement was incorporated. Since the simulation was not concerned with the near-tip region, two modifications were performed. First, the a limiting value of charge density at the tip was imposed. Second, the cathode potential was allowed to float. These two modifications were necessary to prevent development of a strong potential gradient at the cathode tip. The modified cathode model was combined with ion injection from the optics to model the actual beam neutralization. Three configurations were tested: a single thruster, a 2x2 cluster with individual cathodes and a similar cluster with a single large neutralizer. Neither of the cases achieved neutralization comparable to one in the base-line pre-neutralized case. The reason for the discrepancy is not known, but it does not seem to be due a loss of electrons at the walls. The difference could be due to limited extent of the modeled physics. An additional work is required to answer this question.en_US
dc.publisherVirginia Techen_US
dc.relation.haspartbrieda_thesis.pdfen_US
dc.rightsI hereby certify that, if appropriate, I have obtained and attached hereto a written permission statement from the owner(s) of each third party copyrighted matter to be included in my thesis, dissertation, or project report, allowing distribution as specified below. I certify that the version I submitted is the same as that approved by my advisory committee. I hereby grant to Virginia Tech or its agents the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible, under the conditions specified below, my thesis, dissertation, or project report in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. I retain all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis, dissertation or project report. I also retain the right to use in future works (such as articles or books) all or part of this thesis, dissertation, or project report.en_US
dc.subjectplasma simulationen_US
dc.subjectbeam neutralizationen_US
dc.subjectelectron dynamicsen_US
dc.titleDevelopment of the DRACO ES-PIC code and Fully-Kinetic Simulation of Ion Beam Neutralizationen_US
dc.typeThesisen_US
dc.contributor.departmentAerospace and Ocean Engineeringen_US
dc.description.degreeMaster of Scienceen_US
thesis.degree.nameMaster of Scienceen_US
thesis.degree.levelmastersen_US
thesis.degree.grantorVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State Universityen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineAerospace and Ocean Engineeringen_US
dc.contributor.committeechairWang, Joseph J.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberVanGilder, Douglasen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberScales, Wayne A.en_US
dc.identifier.sourceurlhttp://scholar.lib.vt.edu/theses/available/etd-06262005-233343/en_US
dc.date.sdate2005-06-26en_US
dc.date.rdate2005-08-11
dc.date.adate2005-08-11en_US


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