Faculty Advisor

Gatsonis, Nikolaos A.


The Electric Thruster Environmental Effects Verification (ETEEV) experiment aims to test low-power Pulsed Plasma and Hall thrusters in space as part of the NASA Hitchhiker program. The ETEEV payload includes a suite of plasma instruments mounted on a pallet in the shuttle bay, as well as a mechanical diagnostics boom (MDB) that will take plume measurements. This project considers the design of the MDB based on the ETEEV science requirements and safety requirements as set forth by NASA in their CARS document for HItchhiker payloads. Potential designs are discussed, including a rorating boom, a swinging boom, and a hybrid swinging/rotating design. Based on the relative advantages of each design, the rotating/swinging boom design is recommended. Loading and vibrational analyses of this design follow, and a required materials list is drafted. Having passed these stages, realization of the design can take place, allowing an engineering model to be built for further testing and refinement.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

January 2001


Mechanical Engineering

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project


Restricted-WPI community only

Advisor Department

Mechanical Engineering