Fitting of a prototype of an ablative plasma engine
We conducted a rough fitting of a prototype of an ablative plasma engine for the cubesat format satellites. The engine is developed by MEPhI (Igor Egorov is the head of the laboratory). The engine turned out to be compact with very good design characteristics which we plan to check during flight tests. It is supposed to be tested in flight on satellites scheduled to be sent into space by "our" next launch.
The propulsion system will make it possible to maintain or change the sat orbit, including the removal of worked out in orbit satellite, as well as to phase the sats relative to each other in the same orbit. In the future the modified version of the propulsion system will make it possible to use it in the attitude control and stabilization system of the small spacecraft to unload the flywheels on the flight path to the Moon and in the circumlunar orbit.
The prototype is now being tested in a vacuum chamber, work is underway to interface the engine with a satellite platform.