Overview of the ElectroDynamic Delivery Express (EDDE)

Jerome Pearson, Joseph Carroll, Eugene Levin, John Oldson, Paul Hausgen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

The ElectroDynamic Delivery Express (EDDE) is an autonomous space vehicle that can deliver multiple small satellites from any low earth orbit (LEO) to any other desired low earth orbit within months, without using fuel. EDDE uses solar power to drive multiampere currents through a multi-kilometer aluminum tape. The tape sees a force normal to both itself and the local magnetic field. The tape is electrically connected to the ambient ionosphere to close the current loop externally. EDDE spins at ~8X/orbit to improve both stability and operational flexibility. Changing the current as a function of orbit and spin phase imposes forces and torques that allow any desired changes in orbit and spin. This allows far higher performance than possible with a "hanging" electrodynamic tether. For high-inclination orbital plane changes in LEO, EDDE can be more than twice as fast as more conventional high-specific-impulse electric rockets, and has much higher delta-V capability, since it does not expend propellant. EDDE seems particularly well suited to distributing multiple small payloads to custom orbits. EDDE may also enable removal of most existing orbital debris from LEO. We describe two options for a low-cost proof-of-concept demonstration in space.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication39th AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference and Exhibit
StatePublished - 2003
Externally publishedYes
Event39th AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference and Exhibit 2003 - Huntsville, AL, United States
Duration: 20 Jul 200323 Jul 2003

Publication series

Name39th AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference and Exhibit

Conference

Conference39th AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference and Exhibit 2003
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityHuntsville, AL
Period20/07/0323/07/03

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