Micropropulsion experiment on UNISAT-2

F Santoni*, P Tortora, F Graziani, G Manzoni, E Di Fabrizio, L Vaccari

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

The design and implementation of an experimental micropropulsion system, under development jointly by Mechatronic and INFM, is described. The flight experiment will be performed on-board the microsatellite UNISAT-2, in the framework of a cooperation between Universita di Roma "La Sapienza", Mechatronic and INFM. The main goal of the experiment is to have a preliminary assessment of the microthruster performance in orbit. The thruster configuration for the UNISAT-2 experiment is coldgas, using pressurized nitrogen (N-2). The micro convergent-divergent nozzles, obtained by a 500m thickness silicon wafer, have a throat area of about 300mum(2) through which the pressurized gas flow is accelerated. Ground test performed to evaluate the microthruster performance are described, showing that the maximum thrust is in the order of 500muN. Two pairs of microthrusters are mounted with their thrust direction orthogonal to the spin-axis of the UNISAT-2 spacecraft, and are used to perform spin-up/spin-down maneuvers. Measuring the satellite spin rate variation, after thruster activation, the average thrust is evaluated.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2002 IEEE AEROSPACE CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS, VOLS 1-7
PublisherIEEE
Pages479-486
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)0-7803-7231-X
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes
EventIEEE Aerospace Conference - BIG SKY, Malta
Duration: Mar 9 2002Mar 16 2002

Publication series

NameIEEE AEROSPACE CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS
PublisherIEEE
ISSN (Print)1095-323X

Conference

ConferenceIEEE Aerospace Conference
CountryMalta
CityBIG SKY
Period03/9/0203/16/02

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