13. Does the VASIMR® superconducting magnet require persistent-switch technology?

No. The high-temperature superconducting (HTS) magnet used in a VASIMR® engine does not require persistent-switch technology. Present-day HTS technologies have very small losses in splices and connections within the magnet that require some current regulation, and the cryocooler power needed to maintain active current leads has a very small effect on the overall efficiency of the rocket. Perhaps HTS persistent switch technologies can be considered as they become available for future designs, but they are not required by the present VASIMR® design.

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