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Battel Engineering, Inc.
10020 North 58th Street
Scottsdale, AZ  85253
office: (480) 991-9747
fax: (480) 991-9748
email: bateng@earthlink.net

95. Mars Atmosphere Breakdown Simulator

One of the more challenging problems associated with the Mars surface environment is the fact that its atmosphere is in the range of 10 Torr which is in the Paschen breakdown regime. Therefore, high voltage systems must not only be electrostatically shielded from the atmosphere but they must also be tested for their response and reliability in cases where the output can be exposed to such pressures. This picture shows a simple test setup using a commercially available gas tube for verifying the reliability of the HVM output when exposed to Mars atmosphere. The gas tube breakdown at 300 volts results in a relaxation oscillator similar to what would occur at Mars.

 

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Image Steve Battel, Battel Engineering, Inc. All rights reserved.