Dawn Aerospace Awarded €200K by ESA to Enhance the Performance of Green Bipropellant Thrusters

Dawn Aerospace Awarded €200K by ESA to Enhance the Performance of Green Bipropellant Thrusters

The European Space Agency has awarded Dawn Aerospace €200k GSTP funding to increase the performance of its green bi-propellant thrusters for satellites.

Dawn has received over €10 million in orders for satellite propulsion systems in the last 12 months, specifically the B20 and B1 green propellant thrusters and associated turn key systems. Thirty-three of these thrusters on eight spacecraft are already in orbit, with over 100 more thrusters either delivered to customers or in production. All current systems are in ‘Low Earth Orbit.’

“To support deep space missions like GTO to GEO transfers, or lunar and Mars insertions, we need to deliver large delta-v maneuvers,” says Stefan Powell, Dawn CEO and CTO. “To optimize our thrusters for these high-demand applications, we are increasing the performance and qualification levels of our already very successful products.”

The GSTP funding will go toward better understanding and improving thermal management to reduce stress on the combustion chamber materials, enabling longer-duration burns, higher total propellant throughput, and potentially higher specific impulse.

“We have already demonstrated that some of the key changes to the thruster are indeed viable. Early testing shows that there is a lot more performance to squeeze out of our design,” says Powell. “This funding will enable us to rapidly explore various different design options, after which we will qualify the most promising improvements for our customers.”

Following the demonstration of their key technologies in January 2021, The company has secured contracts with several SmallSat constellation builders, including Blue Canyon’s X-SAT Saturn-class satellites, Pixxel's hyperspectral imaging constellation, and the Indonesian Space Agency's (LAPAN) early-tsunami warning constellation.

With one hundred 1N and 20N thrusters on order — forecast to triple in the coming year — Dawn’s green bi-propellant technology is on track to become the second most prolific chemical propulsion type on orbit, after hydrazine — the toxic fuel  Dawn is working to replace.

Click here to learn more about Bipropellant thrusters.

Publisher: SatNow

GNSS Constellations - A list of all GNSS satellites by constellations


Satellite NameOrbit Date
BeiDou-3 G4Geostationary Orbit (GEO)17 May, 2023
BeiDou-3 G2Geostationary Orbit (GEO)09 Mar, 2020
Compass-IGSO7Inclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)09 Feb, 2020
BeiDou-3 M19Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)16 Dec, 2019
BeiDou-3 M20Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)16 Dec, 2019
BeiDou-3 M21Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)23 Nov, 2019
BeiDou-3 M22Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)23 Nov, 2019
BeiDou-3 I3Inclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)04 Nov, 2019
BeiDou-3 M23Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)22 Sep, 2019
BeiDou-3 M24Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)22 Sep, 2019


Satellite NameOrbit Date
GSAT0223MEO - Near-Circular05 Dec, 2021
GSAT0224MEO - Near-Circular05 Dec, 2021
GSAT0219MEO - Near-Circular25 Jul, 2018
GSAT0220MEO - Near-Circular25 Jul, 2018
GSAT0221MEO - Near-Circular25 Jul, 2018
GSAT0222MEO - Near-Circular25 Jul, 2018
GSAT0215MEO - Near-Circular12 Dec, 2017
GSAT0216MEO - Near-Circular12 Dec, 2017
GSAT0217MEO - Near-Circular12 Dec, 2017
GSAT0218MEO - Near-Circular12 Dec, 2017


Satellite NameOrbit Date
Kosmos 2569--07 Aug, 2023
Kosmos 2564--28 Nov, 2022
Kosmos 2559--10 Oct, 2022
Kosmos 2557--07 Jul, 2022
Kosmos 2547--25 Oct, 2020
Kosmos 2545--16 Mar, 2020
Kosmos 2544--11 Dec, 2019
Kosmos 2534--27 May, 2019
Kosmos 2529--03 Nov, 2018
Kosmos 2527--16 Jun, 2018


Satellite NameOrbit Date
Navstar 82Medium Earth Orbit19 Jan, 2023
Navstar 81Medium Earth Orbit17 Jun, 2021
Navstar 78Medium Earth Orbit22 Aug, 2019
Navstar 77Medium Earth Orbit23 Dec, 2018
Navstar 76Medium Earth Orbit05 Feb, 2016
Navstar 75Medium Earth Orbit31 Oct, 2015
Navstar 74Medium Earth Orbit15 Jul, 2015
Navstar 73Medium Earth Orbit25 Mar, 2015
Navstar 72Medium Earth Orbit29 Oct, 2014
Navstar 71Medium Earth Orbit02 Aug, 2014


Satellite NameOrbit Date
NVS-01Geostationary Orbit (GEO)29 May, 2023
IRNSS-1IInclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)12 Apr, 2018
IRNSS-1HSub Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (Sub-GTO)31 Aug, 2017
IRNSS-1GGeostationary Orbit (GEO)28 Apr, 2016
IRNSS-1FGeostationary Orbit (GEO)10 Mar, 2016
IRNSS-1EGeosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)20 Jan, 2016
IRNSS-1DInclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)28 Mar, 2015
IRNSS-1CGeostationary Orbit (GEO)16 Oct, 2014
IRNSS-1BInclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)04 Apr, 2014
IRNSS-1AInclined Geosynchronous Orbit (IGSO)01 Jul, 2013