Charity Wangari

Charity Wangari
31-212M
cwangari 'at' mit.edu
 
Degrees Pursued: Masters, Doctorate
 
Research Interests: Developing novel fabrication techniques using various materials for
applications in Electrospray Propulsion; Material Science; Microfabrication.

Research Summary:

The present research climate in space propulsion involves investigations into pathways to maximize thrust output from electrospray propulsion devices, while maintaining high specific impulses. The basic architecture of these thrusters depends on accelerating charges species at high electrostatic forces to generate thrust. An array of needle-like features act as surfaces from which a select propellant carrying these charged species is transported and extracted at the apex region. Porous substrates are sometimes used to make these emitters because they support liquid bulk transport. Unfortunately, the resolution of the emitter geometry depends on the granularity of these materials, thereby contributing to reduced thrust outputs, as off-axis emissions become a consistent behavior. We are interested in using other materials to generate a new generation of emitter geometries that will ideally support uniaxial emission, thereby aiding in maximizing thrust outputs.