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Costa Rican Franklin Chang’s Plasma Engine Heads to Testing

Costa Rica News – Franklin Chang received the support of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to go forward with tests on his VASIMR plasma engine for travel into space last March.

franklin chang plasma engineNASA gave Chang $9 million for the testing of the engine.

Testing conducted on the VASIMR will use a vacuum chamber to see if the engine will operate continuously for 100 hours at a specific level of power.

The vacuum chamber is used to create a simulation of space.

Success in the contained experiment would suggest that the engine would function properly once it was released beyond the atmosphere. The testing will take place in the vacuum chamber located in Houston, Texas.

Chang’s engine differs from other rockets in that it uses plasma and magnetic fields to accelerate, instead of fuel.  

There are many benefits of Chang’s design and this advancement in the use of his engine could greatly benefit our knowledge of space.

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