NASA seleccions to Ad Astra Rocket of Franklin Chang for development of phase II of motor space Company will be in the phase II of the contract of the motor Vasimr® - Expat Community

NASA seleccions to Ad Astra Rocket of Franklin Chang for development of phase II of motor space Company will be in the phase II of the contract of the motor Vasimr®

May 28, 2024 | Costa Rica, News & Articles | 0 comments

By Esteban Arrieta

Ad Astra Rocket Company, company of the exastronaut Costa Rican Franklin Chang Díaz, has been selected for the phase II of the contract of the NASA for advance in the development of the motor VASIMR®.

It deals of a system of propulsion of plasma of high power, that would allow to the human being to arrive finally to Mars.

This new contract, valued in $850 thousand implies that Ad Astra remains developing the “Horn of Rhinoceros” Generation 4 (Gen-4); which, is a component crucial that delivers high power of radiofrequency (RF) in the core of the motor, allowing heat the plasma to millions of degrees.

The contract of Phase II is a continuation of the successful contract of Phase I, that worth $150 thousand and that was completed in February.

During the phase I, Ad Astra developed and tested a version to small scale of the Horn of Rhinoceros Gen-4, validating its design innovative.

The three generations previous of this component have demonstrated improvements significant, and expects that the fourth generation continue this trend.

The design Gen-3 current of the Horn of Rhinoceros already supported a test of resistance of 88 hours in July of 2021, establishing a record for the company. The studies of the Phase I suggest that the Gen-4 will allow to the motor VASIMR® operate of way stable to more than 100 kW, surpassing the trend to the overheating of the Gen-3.

Besides, they anticipate reductions significant in the weight and improvements in the ease of manufacturing and assembly of the Gen-4.

With the new contract, Ad Astra will proceed to the manufacturing to great scale and to the tests integrated of the hardware Gen-4 in the prototype of laboratory VASIMR® VX-200SSÔ.

Franklin Chang Díaz, CEO of Ad Astra, expressed his enthusiasm for the advances continuous in the motor VASIMR®.

“It is exciting see the incredible quantity of innovation of our team in the improvement continuous of the motor VASIMR® from inside towards outside. I am proud of his incredible creativity and hard work to carry concepts technical as this quickly to the reality”, said Chang Díaz.

These improvements are designed to increase the robustness and the power maximum of the motor VASIMR®, bringing it closer to a level of preparation technological (TRL-6) that would allow his test in the space.

VASIMR®, acronym of Rocket Magnetoplasma of Impulse Specific Variable, works with plasma, a gas electrically charged that can be heated to temperatures extremes by waves of radio and controlled and guided by strong fields magnetic.

The field magnetic also isolates the structures nearby, allowing reach temperatures of escape very superior to the point of fusion of the materials.

In the propulsion of rockets, how greater is the temperature of the gases of escape, greater is its speed and greater is the efficiency of the fuel. The rockets of plasma present speeds of escape much more high that the attainable by his cousins chemicals, for what his consumption of fuel is extremely low.


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