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Development of a CubeSat-Scale Green Monopropellant Propulsion System for NASA's Lunar Flashlight Mission

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dc.contributor.author Huggins, Grayson
dc.contributor.author Talaksi, Ali
dc.contributor.author Lightsey, E. Glenn
dc.contributor.author Andrews, Dawn
dc.contributor.author Cavender, Daniel
dc.contributor.author Diaz, Carlos
dc.contributor.author McQueen, Donald
dc.contributor.author Williams, Hunter
dc.contributor.author Baker, John
dc.contributor.author Kowalkowski, Matthew
dc.date.accessioned 2022-01-12T22:44:32Z
dc.date.available 2022-01-12T22:44:32Z
dc.date.issued 2021-01-11
dc.identifier.citation AIAA SciTech 2021, Nashville, Tennessee, January 11-21, 2021
dc.identifier.clearanceno CL#20-6242
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2014/53314
dc.description.abstract NASA's Lunar Flashlight is a low-cost 6U CubeSat whose mission is to search for ice and mineral deposits inside of the scattered craters at Moon's southern pole. To conduct its primary science mission, Lunar Flashlight must be placed in a stable lunar polar orbit which requires the utilization of an on-board propulsion system. However, to this date, most CubeSats have been propelled by cold-gas or electric propulsion systems that have proven to scale well but lack sufficient impulse to conduct large $\Delta V$ maneuvers such as orbit insertions. To this end, the Lunar Flashlight mission has chosen to utilize a custom-designed green monopropellant propulsion system developed by the Georgia Institute of Technology under the leadership of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center and support from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The developed system is capable of providing more than the required propulsive capability for full mission success while fitting inside of a 2.5U volume and weighing less than six kilograms. The system utilizes the Advanced Space Craft Energetic Non Toxic (ASCENT) green monopropellant that provides higher specific impulse compared to traditional hydrazine while also being safer to handle. If successful, the presented propulsion system will enable Lunar Flashlight to be the first CubeSat to reach the Moon, the first to conduct an orbit insertion, and will be the first CubeSat demonstration of the ASCENT propellant.
dc.description.sponsorship NASA/JPL en_US
dc.language.iso en_US
dc.publisher Pasadena, CA: Jet Propulsion Laboratory, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, 2021
dc.title Development of a CubeSat-Scale Green Monopropellant Propulsion System for NASA's Lunar Flashlight Mission
dc.type Preprint


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