Modeling Plasma Flow in a Magnetic Nozzle with the Lattice-Boltzmann Method
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Magnetic nozzles must convert thermal or gyro energy of the plasma to thrust while also inducing plasma detachment in order to be effective. Plasma detachment and methods to induce plasma detachment are examined. In particular, super Alfvenic detachment and resistive detachment are examined. A parametric study of the plasma flow is conducted. Plasma flow through a magnetic nozzle is simulated using a three-dimensional, timedependent magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) model. The MHD equations are modeled using the lattice-Boltzmann method and the linearized Boltzmann equation with the Bhatnagar-Gross-Krook operator for collisions. This thesis presents simulations of configurations and conditions related to the VASIMR propulsion scheme. This research demonstrates plasma detachment using resistive and super Alfvenic mechanisms by modeling plasma flow with the Lattice Boltzmann Method.
lattice boltzmann method
computational fluid dynamics
Ebersohn, Frans Hendrik (2010). Modeling Plasma Flow in a Magnetic Nozzle with the Lattice-Boltzmann Method. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from