The Helicon Double Layer Thruster, developed by researchers at the Australian National University, will be featured on the ABC’s Catalyst program this Thursday evening, 2nd August, at 8pm EST (details here). The story will include interviews with Professor Rod Boswell and Dr Christine Charles and show footage of the HDLT prototype being tested in a new space simulation vacuum chamber at the ANU. The HDLT is a new Australian plasma rocket engine that has been tested in conjunction with the European Space Agency in 2005 (see SMH article here) and could be used aboard future communications satellites and spacecraft that travel to the Moon, Mars and beyond.
More details about the HDLT can be found at Space Plasma, Power & Propulsion Group’s website here. For those who are unable to see the program, a link to an online version of the Catalyst program will hopefully be available after the program has aired.