Recently, under the guidance of Prof. Wang Weizong and Dr. Yan Jiaqi from the School of Astronautics, the work by six students, including Dai Qi, Chen Changrui, Cao Hanzhang, Li Hao, Di Sihan and Zhang Jiebo, won the grand prize in the 2nd National University Students Innovation Contest on Plasma Science and Technology.
Their work, named “Inertial Electrostatic Confinement Aspirating Electric Thruster”, is based on a project “Research on technology of advanced space electronic propulsion technology for micro-spacecraft” by Prof. Wang Zongwei and supported by the Beijing Innovation and Entrepreneurship Training Program for College Students. During one-year preparation, in spite of the pandemic, the team collaborated and developed an inertial electrostatic confinement aspirating electric thruster characterized by simple structure, no neutralizer, high ionization rate, low power consumption, low ablation loss, and long service life, achieving successful ignition in a low-pressure environment and stable operation in different modes. The work also has other innovative features which enable it to have a promising future in the fields of near-space propulsion and deep space exploration.
Meeting the demand of the country and related industries and focusing on frontier hot spots and applications of plasma science, the contest aims at instructing students to participate in innovative activities, cultivating talent with inter-disciplinary ability, and forming an all-rounded integration and collaborative development of different scientific fields. The contest this year was held under the concept of “interdisciplinary integration and innovation-driven development”, setting five tracks including comprehensive creation, low-carbon energy, green environmental protection, life and health, and cutting-edge science and technology. After the preliminary selection and recommendation of each participating unit, the organizing committee received 291 valid entries, among which 128 entries from 52 universities and research institutes were finally shortlisted for the finals. In the final round, after a fierce competition, a total of 6 grand prizes, 34 first prizes, 54 second prizes, and several third prizes were awarded.
In recent years, the School of Astronautics has adhered to the principle of “leading scientific innovation and cultivating talents through practice”, and has made great efforts to prepare students to be innovative through practice from the aspects of regulations, teaching resources, and platforms. Various kinds of courses and activities carried out by the school plays a positive role in helping students win the grand prize in the contest this year.
Reported by Liu Wei
Reviewed by Liu Rui
Edited by Jia Aiping
Translated by Li Yifan