Optimum Design of Low-Pressure Micro-Resistojet Applied to Nano- and Pico-Satellites

Daduí Cordeiro Guerrieri, Marsil A. C. Silva, Angelo Cervone, Eberhard Gill

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

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A Low-Pressure Micro-Resistojet (LPM) is under development at TU Delft with the intention to provide future nano- and pico-satellites with the necessary capability to execute formation flying maneuvers, orbit change maneuvers, and station keeping. In this particular type of electro-thermal thruster, water is a green propellant of excellent performance, which can be stored as a liquid or solid operating at very low pressure, under evaporation or sublimation conditions. The formed vapor flows to a series of hot microchannels in a heater chip. Then, the flow is heated and expanded at high Knudsen numbers to a high exhaust velocity. This concept is very promising when associated to the typical CubeSat or PocketQube requirements that demand low tank pressure, low system mass, intrinsic safety, “green” propellants – non-corrosive, non-flammable, non-toxic, with limited energetic content – and a sufficiently long operational life. This paper discusses the optimization of the LPM design applied to two different missions, one for a CubeSat mission which requires a formation flight and other for a PocketQube mission which will be used as a flight demonstration platform.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationESA Space Propulsion 2018 Conference, Seville, Spain
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2018
EventESA Space Propulsion 2018 Conference - Seville, Spain
Duration: 14 May 201818 May 2018
Conference number: 20


ConferenceESA Space Propulsion 2018 Conference
Abbreviated titleSpace Propulsion 2018
Internet address


  • LPM
  • Micro-Resistojet
  • green propulsion
  • Low-pressure
  • FMMR


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