Summary

The ENPULSION MICRO R³ is a propulsion system based on the flight-proven ENPULSION NANO with modular design and flight heritage electronics. Building on the heritage of the ENPULSION NANO, ENPULSION has developed a scaled version of the technology to target small and medium size spacecrafts. The ENPULSION MICRO R³ is engineered in a modular approach, with units clustering easily together to form building blocks that can be arranged for various mission profiles.

The ENPULSION MICRO R³ is a scaled technology of the ENPULSION NANO which has a developmental history of over 15 years. During this time, there have been hundreds of emitters tested with an ongoing lifetime test that has surpassed 30,000 hours of firing. This endurance test continues without degradations.

One module and its tank only take up a volume of 1.6 L and can provide more than 50,000 Ns at 4,000 s Isp. The module is simply bolted to the outside of the spacecraft and can be used as a standalone unit or it can easily be clustered for higher thrust applications.

The thrust can be controlled through the electrode voltage, which provides excellent controllability, down to a precision of 50 µN as well as low thrust noise.

Even during active operation, no part of the thruster is pressurized, and no chemical energy is stored. This means that in case of a collision or impact, there will not be an explosive reaction which could harm the spacecraft and create debris.

With its efficient ionization process the ENPULSION MICRO R³ can deliver higher specific impulse than any other ion propulsion system currently on the market.

The Power Processing Unit is based on the heritage electronics used in the ENPULSION NANO, leveraging exhaustive on-orbit and testing heritage, as well as introducing component lot control and heritage in EEE part selection. The PPU can be either stacked or integrated separately from the thruster.

The ENPULSION MICRO R³ contains no moving parts and uses non-toxic Indium as the propellant. There are no liquids or reactive propellant as well as no pressurized vessels. Stored as a solid and filled at our facilities it requires no special handling, integration, or launch procedures.

The ENPULSION MICRO R³ can be integrated in a stacked configuration, with the PPU situated directly underneath the thruster head, with same footprint. Alternatively, the PPU box can be integrated separately from the thruster head.

The ENPULSION MICRO R³ can be operated at a wide range of thrust and specific impulse, depending on the power level available. The operational envelope is based on total system power including typical heater and neutralizers consumption.


Key features

  • Mature technology
  • Modular package with high total impulse
  • Dynamic precise thrust control
  • Debris safety
  • Controllable specific impulse up to 6,000 s
  • Heritage electronics
  • Safe and inert system compliant during launch
  • Wide operational envelope

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Last updated: 2022-04-22

ENPULSION MICRO R³

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Specs

9TRL
dynamic thrust range
200 µN - 1.35 mN
nominal thrust
1 mN
specific impulse
1500 to 6000 s
propellant mass
1.3 kg
total impulse
> 50 kN s
total system power
30 to 120 W
length
140 mm (thruster head)
140 mm (PPU box)
width
120 mm (thruster head)
120 mm (PPU box)
height
98.6 mm (thruster head)
34.0 mm (PPU box)
dry mass (including PPU)
2.6 kg
wet mass (including PPU)
3.9 kg
lead time
30 weeks after receipt of deposit
power at nominal thrust
90 to 100 W
hot standby power
10 to 15 W

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