Shuttle - Compatible High Performance Propulsion Module

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA9300-04-C-0037
Agency Tracking Number: 021NM-0836
Amount: $746,304.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2004
Solicitation Year: 2002
Solicitation Topic Code: AF02-051
Solicitation Number: 2002.1
Small Business Information
11 Tech Circle, Natick, MA, 01760
DUNS: 184629491
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Bruce Pote
 (508) 655-5565
Business Contact
 Judy Budny
Phone: (508) 655-5565
Research Institution
The Air Force Space Test Program (STP) seeks a space shuttle (SS) compatible, high performance, propulsion module (PM) to raise the orbit of a small, SS deployed, experimental payload (125 kg), to a 700+ km. Preliminary analysis identified the Busek 200 W Hall thruster fueled by nontoxic xenon propellant as the most promising technology. The Hall thruster based, 56 kg PM which includes, in addition to the main propulsion subsystem, a solar power system, batteries, power management electronics and ACS propulsion can raise a 181 kg spacecraft (PM + payload) to a maximum of 2458 km. The Hall thruster can also deliver discrete impulse bits (< 2 mN sec) and therefore be used for precise spacecraft positioning as envisioned for formation flying systems. In Phase I, Busek refined the mass, power and operational capability of the Hall thruster system in accordance with the requirements for a standardized plug and play module for the Shuttle Rocket for Payload Augmentation (SHERPA). In Phase II, the remaining subsystem of the propulsion module, the power processor unit and digital control interface unit (PPU/DCIU) will be designed and built at the engineering model level, further advancing the system for an eventual flight opportunity.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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