Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corp. and Aerojet Rocketdyne have collaborated to test launch a thruster for NASA’s Green Propellant Infusion Mission with the goal of further developing an eco-friendly fuel.
Ball Aerospace works with a team of government and industry experts intending to fly the 22 Newton Thruster aboard a Ball Configurable Platform spacecraft using a blend of hydroxyl ammonium nitrate fuel and oxidizer as the propellant, the company said Tuesday.
The initiative aimed to demonstrate the spacecraft fuel as an alternative to hydrazine.
Jim Oschmann, Ball’s vice president and general manager for civil space and technologies, said the company and Aerojet Rocketdyne intend to demonstrate the technology required to engineer a green propellant for future space flights.
Ball Aerospace has teamed up with co-investigators from Aerojet Rocketdyne, NASA’s Glenn Research Center and Kennedy Space Center, and the U.S. Air Force’s research laboratory at Edwards Air Force Base and missile systems center at Kirkland Air Force Base.
The thruster will launch along with four 1N thrusters to begin the orbit inclination and altitude changes.