The ANU have proudly announced that their Space Plasma Power and Propulsion group have sold a plasma thruster design to EADS-Astrium for use in a satellite.
- “EADS-Astrium has decided to fund the University of Surrey to produce a prototype Helicon Double layer thruster suitable for space use. For this to occur the University of Surrey requires the expertise of the SP3 group here at ANU,” said Dr Charles. “It is our thruster which will show that this type of propulsion system is suitable for space use and space missions that EADS-Astrium will fund.”
The importance of these thrusters is that they can fire their fuel out the back end faster, which means they can get more acceleration (or Delta V if you prefer) for the same weight of fuel.