RAFAEL designs, develops and manufactures Electrical Propulsion Systems (EPS) for space applications.
The EPS designed by RAFAEL for the Venµs satellite is designed to support and operate two IHET-300 thrusters. These thrusters are of Hall Effect type, designed for low power operation.
EPS main components are the Hall Effect Thrusters (HET), Propellant Management Assembly (PMA), Digital Xenon Flow Controller (DXFC), Power Processing Unit (PPU), and two Filter Units (FU).
The PMA is composed of a tank, storing 16kg of high pressurized Xenon, and a set of valves, pressure reducers and manifolds transporting the gas. The PPU contains the power supplies and the sequencer command logic to operate the thrusters. The FU’s function is to filter and mitigate the thruster oscillations.
For missions requiring flexibility in operating the satellite thrust, a variable thrust mechanism is incorporated. The RAFAEL EPS incorporates a DXFC that serves as the ‘throttling’ device for the xenon flow rate through the HET-300 anode. The EPS can operate with two thrusters, one at a time, as selected by the Thruster Selection Unit (TSU) as required by the mission.