Michael Bretti - High Vacuum Propulsion Testing Chamber

My name is Michael Bretti, and I am an electrical engineer with an intense dedication and passion for the fields of pulsed power, particle beam systems, plasma physics, high vacuum engineering, and electric space propulsion. I have been interested in these unique and niche applications for many years, and from my years of research, and my love for a practical, hands-on DIY experimental approach to engineering, have begun to explore ways of developing and sharing resources on these technologies and making them more accessible, and to lower the boundary of entry into these advanced engineering systems. These efforts have lead to the start of Applied Ion Systems.

Applied Ion Systems is a unique open-source effort aimed at pushing the boundaries of charged particle beam, pulsed power, plasma systems, and propulsion systems at a low-cost, hobbyist DIY level, while providing professional-level engineering specifications, analysis, designs, and resources. The two major areas of focus that are currently under development include high power particle accelerator technology, and ion/plasma thruster micro-propulsion for CubeSats and other small satellite applications – both of which have yet to be explored and developed at the low-cost hobbyist budget level.

With the advent of the maker movement, and rapid growth of makerspaces, maker communities, and DIY science, many technologies are becoming much more available to the average experimenter or small research group. From 3D printing, to fusors, CubeSats, biohacking, robotics, IoT, and many, many other technologies, the open source community has made extraordinary contributions to the wealth of accessibility of technology and making. Only as more and more dedicated DIYers pursue these areas can more advancements and contributions be made to lower the entry level barrier to these exciting technologies.

The long term goal of Applied Ion Systems is to break through this barrier for new high-tech areas, usher in these technologies to the maker community, and lead the advancement and development of these technologies with an unconventional approach. It is my hope and goal that through these efforts, such normally intensive and high cost fields of science and engineering will be more accessible. I am also currently and actively working on developing and providing complete solutions specifically in the area of low-cost propulsion systems for low-funded small-satellite groups.

If you would like to discuss, collaborate, donate to, or sponsor the efforts at Applied Ion Systems, please feel free to reach out at appliedionsystems@gmail.com. All of the efforts and resources provided here at Applied Ion Systems are done in my own spare time, and are the result of hundreds of hours of personal research, design, and testing, and either completely funded out of pocket, or through the occasional lucky find of free components through stead-fast and determined resourcefulness. If you enjoy the resources provided, and have found them helpful in your own projects, or share the same passion and vision of breaking through technological barriers and making such technologies more accessible, please consider supporting these efforts.

You can also follow the design efforts, builds, and updates on social media from the Applied Ion Systems Twitter and Instagram pages. Get immediate project info, data, and pictures of what is being developed currently at Applied Ion Systems (links at the bottom of the page under Follow @).