Development of Magnetic Nozzle Simulations for Space Propulsion Applications
Glesner, Colin Christopher
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A means of space propulsion using the channeling of plasma by a divergent magnetic field, referred to as a magnetic nozzle has been explored by a number of research groups. This research develops the capability to apply the high order accurate Runge-Kutta discontinuous Galerkin numerical method to the simulation of magnetic nozzles. The resistive magnetohydrodynamic model of plasma behavior is developed for these simulations. To facilitate this work, several modeling capabilities are developed, including the implementation of appropriate inflow and far-field boundary conditions, the application of a technique for correcting errors that develop in the divergence of the magnetic field, and a split formulation for the magnetic field between the applied and the perturbed component. This model is then applied to perform a scaling study of the performance of magnetic nozzles over a range of Bk and Rm. In addition, the effect of the choice of simulation domain size is investigated. Finally, recommendations for future work are made.
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