An axially propagating two-stream instability in the Hall thruster plasma

S. Tsikata, J. Cavalier, A. Héron, C. Honoré, N. Lemoine, D. Grésillon and D. Coulette
Phys. Plasmas 21, 072116 (2014)

Collective Thomson scattering experiments reveal the presence of high-frequency, axial electron density fluctuations at millimetric wavelengths in the Hall thruster plasma. The properties of these fluctuations are investigated experimentally and via linear kinetic theory.The relative drift of electrons and ions in the axial direction is found to be insufficient to cause excitation of the observed mode. Instead, the mode is determined to be a two-stream instability arising due to the velocity difference between singly and doubly charged ion populations in the plume.

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