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Thales Alenia Space and Snecma Sign New Electric Propulsion Agreement

By Rachel Scharmann | May 29, 2014
      PPS 1350 (2)

      Snecma’s PPS 1350 plasma thruster. Photo: Snecma

      [Via Satellite 05-29-2014] Thales Alenia Space signed an agreement with Snecma to use the company’s PPS 500 plasma thruster as standard equipment on the new Spacebus platform, making for a satellite platform with all-electric propulsion. In addition, Snecma will factor in Thales Alenia Space’s requirements in its thruster qualification program.

      “This agreement consolidates our long-standing collaboration with Snecma. Their thrusters are already standard items on Spacebus and Alphabus platforms,” said Bertrand Maureau, VP of telecommunications at Thales Alenia Space. “This latest product, now under development with the support of [the French Space Agency] CNES and the French investment board CGI, allows Thales Alenia Space to expand our portfolio to include large platforms with all-electric propulsion, already being offered in the market.”

      Snecma offers a range of plasma thrusters and related propulsion systems with power ratings from 500 W to 20 kW. The company’s PPS 1350 plasma thruster is already in use on the Alphabus platform to provide orbital positioning and station keeping for satellites.