Busek Delivers High-Performance Electric Propulsion Systems for Government and Commercial Space Missions

Busek Delivers High-Performance Electric Propulsion Systems for Government and Commercial Space Missions

Busek is one of the leaders in the development and manufacture of high-performance in-space thrusters, sensors, and subsystems. From technology pathfinders to turnkey systems for satellite constellations, the firm's products provide thrust for challenging government and commercial missions. Busek's broad technology portfolio, experience across multiple space propulsion disciplines, and unique manufacturing, test, and flight expertise, enable it to provide unbiased solutions to best-fit customer needs.

Busek has provided a wide range of thrusters, electronics, space systems, research, and complete mission and system engineering support for customers including the major aerospace primes, NASA, and the US Air Force. Busek's flight heritage includes products developed for AFRL TacSat-2, USAFA FalconSat-3, FalconSat-5, and NASA/ESA Lisa Pathfinder.

Busek's thruster portfolio includes Hall Thrusters, Electrospray Thrusters, RF Ion Thrusters, and Monopropellant Thrusters that are developed and assembled in-house maintaining high volume and high reliability.

Hall Thrusters: Hall thrusters generate thrust by creating and accelerating ionized gas via an electric field. With no moving mechanical parts and a simple electrical layout, Hall thrusters are extremely reliable with no on-orbit thruster failures have been reported to date. 

Electrospray Thruster: Electrospray thrusters are characterized by precise thrust control (on the order of nano-Newtons) and extremely efficient operation (over 80%). This makes them the superior solution for ultra-precise spacecraft pointing, with pointing accuracy exceeding that of reaction wheels alone by ~2 orders of magnitude.

RF Ion Thruster: In the sub-100W system range, scaling conventional EP Hall thrusters is prohibitively inefficient. The 6U CubeSat form factor is unfavorable for any pressure vessels. These systems tend to be small, power limited, and require a new type of thruster. 

Monopropellant Thruster: Busek's Green Monopropellant Thrusters feature a patented monolithic catalyst that is efficient yet extremely robust. Available thruster sizes range from 0.1N to 22N class, with demonstrated vacuum-specific impulse greater than 230 sec. The default green monopropellant of choice is ASCENT propellant, which has a 10% higher specific impulse and 45% greater density than hydrazine, a highly toxic monopropellant.

Busek has conducted decades of research on Hall thrusters and plasma physics since its inception and built the first U.S. Hall thruster to fly in space

Some of their key accomplishments include: 

The first US Hall thruster in space 

• The first microPPT thrusters 

The first flight-proven electrospray thrusters 

• The first propellant-less Carbon Nano-tube Field Emission Cathode Neutralizer 

• The world’s lowest noise thrust stand (noise level below 0.1µN/rt-Hz in the 1mHz-100mHz bandwidth) 

Busek has over 33,000 square feet of engineering, laboratory, product assembly, and testing facility space. Their two locations are specifically designed and fully equipped for the development, testing, and assembly of sophisticated space hardware and subsystems.

Click here to learn more about Busek's Spacecraft Thrusters.

Publisher: SatNow


  • Country: United States
More news from Busek

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