Design and construction of a multimode, regulated power supply for use on a 30 kilowatt arcjet



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Texas Tech University


The power supply, used in this experiment, was designed from the start as a power source for a laboratory arcjet experiment. Therefore, it was never intended for use on a space-based arcjet. A phase control technique was used that gave the power supply complete and continuous variability from no output to full on. This type of power supply is unique to arcjet research since the ability for continuous variation allows the arcjet operating point (i.e., power level) to be changed while the arcjet is running. This capability allowed for the recording of continuous arcjet characteristic V-I curves. Another unique feature of a phase-controlled power supply is its unusually high output current ripple. This allowed for ripple-related cathode erosion studies at current ripple values never before possible.