News | 14.07.2017

European electric prolusion thrusters have been selected by Boeing for their commercial satellites

Safran Aircraft Engines and its PPS®5000 electric propulsion Hall Effect Thrusters (HET) have been selected by the satellite manufacturer Boeing to provide an electric propulsion subsystem to support orbit-raising on a commercial satellite program.

The first HET thrusters along with their PPU will be delivered in 2018 for a satellite launch planned in 2019.

This contract represents two important world first achievements:

  • The first use of a cluster of three HET thrusters, operating simultaneously, to perform orbital transfer duties (orbit-raising).
  • The first deployment of a HET thruster developing 5 kW of power – 10% more than current models used on telecommunications satellites.

Boeing is pioneer in the use of electric propulsion on commercial satellites, and in particularly on its 702SP all electric satellites. Boeing has been using Gridded Ion Engines (GIE) thrusters from US on its platforms, and this contact marks Boeing’s first use of HET thrusters for special missions/applications.

The adoption by the US satellite manufacturer Boeing of the European electric propulsion technology for its all electric satellites is a great step for the European industry and its competitiveness.

More info on Safran press releases.