Summary

Magnetorquers rods are a method of controlling the attitude of a spacecraft either directly, by interacting with the local Earth's magnetic field or, more usually, in combination with reaction wheels. This secondary method allows for the dumping of excess momentum in the reaction wheels without the need for a complex propulsion system.

The NSS magnetorquer rods use a magnetic alloy rod which produces an amplification effect over an air-cored magnetorquer. This allows a system that utilizes less power and is less susceptible to magnetic torque variations due to temperature. Each rod is typically bifilar wound for redundancy, or the windings can be activated together to increase the torque produced. While drive circuits for the rods can be supplied if required, they typically run directly between a switched power output and the on-board power control system.

Applications

  • Active damping for spin-stabilized, momentum-biased, and gravity-gradient-controlled satellites
  • Momentum dumping of reaction wheels ni three-axis stabilised spacecraft
  • Simple magnetic stabilization

Key features

  • High moment for low-power
  • Small size and low mass
  • Very small residual magnetic moment
  • Adaptable for size, moment, and power to meet optimal system requirements
  • Redundant windings available
  • Simple interface

Flight heritage

First flown in 2014, since then NSS has become one of the largest magnetorquer rod manufacturers globally having delivered >4,500 rods to a variety of international missions and constellation programs; all with differing performance requirements. To date, the NSS magnetorquer rods are baselined on >10 constellation programs.

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Last updated: 2024-02-06

TAURUS Magnetorquer Rods

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Specs

mass per length
approx. 30 g/cm length (12 mm core)
length
12 cm up to 75 cm
width
12 cm up to 75 cm
height
12 cm up to 75 cm
magnetic moment
from 2 Am2 up to 300 Am2
linearity
< ±5% across operating range
residual moment
< 0.3 Am2 at 100 Am
power consumption per magnetic moment
1 W / 50 Am2 typical (customisable)
power supply
5 V DC - 28 V DC (customisable)
thermal (acceptance)
-25 to 70 C
mechanical vibration
21.06 gRMS (random)
connector type
9-way D-type male (micro-D on smaller rods, dual pins per winding and redundant winding options available)
can be replaced by a Molex® Pico-Lock

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