Airbus Defence and Space, Thales Alenia Space Tap Air Liquide for Xenon Satellite Fuel
[Via Satellite 01-29-2016] European satellite manufacturers Airbus Defence and Space and Thales Alenia Space have signed two multiyear contracts for high purity xenon with Air Liquide. Xenon is used as fuel for electric propulsion systems. Collectively the contracts are worth approximately $22 million.
Xenon is a very scarce gas on Earth. Air Liquide uses proprietary technologies to extract xenon from air and relies on diversified sourcing capabilities to ensure a sustainable supply. Advanced analytical equipment is used to produce customer-specific xenon, from standard to ultra-high purity, for the industrial, medical, electronics and space sectors. High purity xenon is used as propellant for satellite orbit raising and station-keeping.