Meet Diego García Lahuerta: simulation of plasma flows in EPTs

Hi! I am Diego García Lahuerta, and I am one of the PhD students of the ZARATHUSTRA team. In the following paragraphs you will learn what my work is about.

In my thesis, I am working on fluid dynamic simulations of electrodeless plasma thrusters. This is a very demanding topic as it involves many different aspects of physics and mathematics. It is an essential part of the ZARATHUSTRA project , wich aims for a better understanding of the behaviour of EPTs. At the moment my research is focused on the simulation of the external part of simple magnetic nozzles in order to validate our models and methods against results existing in the literature; the next step will be to simulate the external region of the Magnetic Arch thruster, a challenging 3D problem that has never been analyzed before.

This is a central part of the project as the geometry of the external magnetic field is one of the most novel features of the Magnetic Arch Thruster and therefore the expansion of the plasma is expected to have a very different behavior than that of cylindrical EPTs.

My participation in the Zarathustra project so far has been very exciting as it has let me participate in an intellectually stimulating environment and deepen my knowledge on numerical methods and plasma physics. In the next years, our work has the potential to unravel the physics of the operation of these devices, which would have a strong impact on the technology of space propulsion.

Simulation figure
Authored by: Mario Merino
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