Summary

The ENPULSION NANO IR³ is the next-generation FEEP system based on the flight-proven success story that is the ENPULSION NANO. Incorporation of lessons learned from a large number of acceptance test campaigns and in-orbit performance verifications led into an updated electronics design, thermostructural concept, and software functionality. The resulting product – the ENPULSION NANO IR³ – features increased reliability, radiation tolerance, and environmental resilience, and is configured to enable higher-thrust operating points.

RAD-TOLERANT ELECTRONICS

All EEE components of the ENPULSION NANO IR³ are procured in lot-controlled batches. Selected sets of these batches are subjected to radiation testing, so that each thruster can be traced back to a fully representative qualification model. EEE components were selected and integrated to be more tolerant to TID and SEE.

FLIGHT HERITAGE

The ENPULSION NANO IR³ is an updated version of the space proven ENPULSION NANO. It is directly building on its heritage, leveraging the proven design and component selection.

PROTECTIVE CASING

The thruster is assembled into a protective casing that shields the electronics from the hazardous space radiation environment, facilitates handling during integration, and allows side mounting.

VERSATILE PERFORMANCE

Thrust can be controlled through the electrode voltages, providing excellent controllability over the full thrust range and a low thrust noise. Due to the efficient ionization process, the ENPULSION NANO IR³ can provide a higher specific impulse than any other ion propulsion system currently on the market.

SAFE AND INERT SYSTEM

The ENPULSION NANO IR³ contains no moving parts and the indium propellant is in its solid state at room temperature. Avoiding any liquid and reactive propellants as well as pressurized tanks significantly simplifies handling, integration, and launch procedures.

PROPERTIES AND PERFORMANCE

While the required power to operate the ENPULSION NANO IR³ starts at around 8 W, at higher power levels one can choose between high thrust and high specific impulse operation. The ENPULSION NANO IR³ has been configured to enable thrust values up to 500 µN, and can operate at an Isp range of 1,500 to 4,000 s.

At any given thrust point, higher Isp operation will increase the total impulse, while also increas ing the power demand. The thruster can be operated along the full dynamic range throughout the mission. This means that high Isp and low Isp manoeuvres can be included in a mission planning as well as high thrust orbit manoeuvres and low thrust precision control manoeuvres.


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Last updated: 2021-10-26

ENPULSION NANO IR³

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Specs

dynamic thrust range
10 to 500 µN
nominal thrust
500 µN
specific impulse
1500 to 4000 s
propellant mass
220 g
total impulse
> 4000 N s
power at nominal thrust
45 W incl. neutralizer
length
98.0 mm
width
99.0 mm
height
95.3 mm
dry mass
< 1200 g
wet mass
< 1420 g
total system power
8 to 45 W
hot standby power
3.5 W
temperature envelope
-40 to 95 C
operating temperature
-20 to 40 C
voltage1
12 V
28 V

1. Other voltages available on request.

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