Due to its compact size and non-toxic propellant, Bradford ECAPS' 100mN HPGP Thruster is especially suited to small satellites and CubeSats. Key features of this system include:

  • Non-toxic propellant makes for easier and less costly integration on secondary or ‘piggy-back’ missions.
  • Allows for more secondary or ‘piggy-back’ launch opportunities, especially missions where there is concern about the hazards of hydrazine and its risks to the primary payload.
  • Allows for more capable missions than spacecraft without propulsion
  • Allows for more agile mission profiles than electric propulsion. Spacecraft take significantly less time to execute maneuvers and orbit changes.
  • Higher performance over hydrazineallows for more payload or longer mission duration.
  • ‘Fuel at the factory’ – integrate in place

Integrated small satellite modules using the 100mN HPGP are also offered in conjunction with VACCO as part of their MiPS (Micro Propulsion System) within their CubeSat Propulsion line of products (www.cubesat-propulsion.com). The VACCO MiPS integrates arrays of 100mN HPGP and cold gas thrusters working in symphony to provide highly capable and highly modular microsatellite propulsion systems.

VACCO MiPS and Bradford ECAPS 100mN HPGP are slated to be aboard two upcoming missions, ArgoMoon ( www.cubesat-propulsion.com/argomoon-propulsion-system/) and Lunar Flashlight (www.cubesat-propulsion.com/lunar-flashlight-propulsion-system/), both intended to be sent around the Moon to conduct scientific exploration. In particular, Lunar Flashlight represents a demonstration of four 100mN HPGP thrusters (providing 3,320 N-sec total impulse) working in unison to map the Lunar surface.

Specifcations Table

Thruster Type HPGP
Propellant LMP-103S
Thrust Class 100 mN
Primary Operational Mode Δ ∨
Inlet Pressure Range 2.3 - 4.5 Bar
Thrust Range 30 - 100 mN
Nozzle Expansion Ratio 100:1
Steady State ISP (vacuum) Typical 192 - 2050 Ns/Kg
(196 - 209 s)
Density Impulse (vacuum) 2387 - 2542 Ns/L
Minimum Impulse Bit ≤ 5 mNs
Overall Length 55 mm ec. FCV
Mass 0.040 kg ex. FCV
FCV Type Solenoid
- No of Seats Single Seat
- Pull-in Voltage 10 ± 2.5 VDC
- Holding Voltage 3.3 VDC
- Coil Resistance (each coil) Ω 40
Nominal Reactor Pre-heating Voltage 9 VDC
Regulated Reactor Ore-heating Power 6.3 - 8 W
Target Life - Qual. Level  
Pulses 2,000
Propellant Throughput 1 kg
Longest Continues Firing 18 minutes
Accumulated Firing Time 5 hours
Firing Sequences 150
Demonstrated Life  
Pulses 6,696
Propellant Throughput 0.4 kg
Longest Continues Firing Time 30 minutes
Accumulated Firing Time 2.3 hours
Firing Sequences 128
Maturation Level TRL 5/6
Current Status  
  EQM in Qualification