The new engine will allow microsatellites to perform "adult" tasks.
Stellar Exploration claims that such a miniature two-component engine will give microsatellites the ability to perform interplanetary missions.
LOGAN, Utah - Stellar Exploration, based in San Luis Obispo, California, is currently conducting an assessment test of a small-sized jet system, with which small vehicles will be able to carry out interplanetary missions.
“What’s not typical of this technology, which Stellar Exploration developed in collaboration with Malin Space Science Systems from San Diego, is its power,” says Mike Luks, president of Space Exploration Engineering, specializing in missions in the space between Earth and the Moon, near the moon and in deep space. The engine, which works on hydrazine and nitrogen tetroxide, is capable of accelerating a 12U cube and weighing about 28 kilograms to two kilometers per second.
“The tiny two-component motor that Stellar built unexpectedly gives to many cubsat the ability to perform what previously could only be much larger and therefore more expensive devices,” wrote Luks in an e-mail to us: “Not a single development that is on the market The moment for Kubsat is not even this close. Despite its size, this is a serious, “adult” jet engine, built on well-known technologies, and with its help microsatellites will finally cease to “splash around in the frog pool”.
Funding for the design and construction of Stellar Exploration was obtained under the program of Promising Small Missions of the NASA (Small Innovative Missions for Planetary Exploration) planets, which supports the development and development of scientific missions for small vehicles. The company expects that for the first time its development will be used at the Kubsat, which will be sent to Mars along the way with the NASA mission to Psyche asteroid in 2022. Psyche will fly past Mars, so the Kubsat must have sufficient thrust reserves to move from the asteroid to orbit around the Red Planet.
“But we are also looking for other practical applications,” SpaceNews explained Thomas Svitek, President of Stellar Exploration, at a conference on small satellites. “For example, such an engine can be put on a small robotic descent module, or microsatellite, which will go from a geo-transition to geostationary orbit, or a satellite that will navigate itself to the Molniya orbit .
“Plus, it is designed for fairly low tank pressures, which reduces safety requirements. We immediately conceived everything so that there were fewer problems with constraints, ”added Sweetek.