How does solar electric propulsion (ion propulsion) work?
DS1's engine makes thrust by magnetically charging atoms and then repelling them from the spacecraft. This stream of atoms spewing out the back of the thruster pushes DS1 forward. Solar power provides the energy. The process is like this:
What is an atom?
What is an ion?
Could NASA use ion propulsion to put a ship into space?
What is the difference between an ion engine and a conventional one?
Can you use ion propulsion on Earth?
How do conventional rockets work?
How does propulsion work?
What is energy?
What is thrust?
What is plasma?
How fast does DS1 go?
How are ions accelerated?
What causes ions to leave DS1?
What is a cathode?
What happens to the ions once they leave the space craft?
What would happen if DS1 ran out of fuel?
Why is an ion engine solar powered?
Why is an ion plume blue?
What does electrically charged mean?
How are atoms charged?
Are ion engines radioactive?
Why do ion engines need a vacuum to work?
What else uses plasma?