11. How heavy is a VASIMR® engine?
Depending on the mission, a VASIMR® propulsion system's mass becomes competitive with other electric propulsion technologies as power is increased above several 10s of kilowatts. It becomes even more competitive at higher power levels because some of the major VASIMR® components, like the magnet and rocket core, do not become larger as power is increased. Our publication, [IEPC-2013-149], describes the preliminary design reviewed in June of 2013 for a 200 kW VASIMR® engine with a mass of 620 kg including the RF generators and radiators. Please see this publication, and also FAQ9, for additional information.