The development of the STAR thruster is currently funded by a UK Space Agency National Space Technology Programme (NSTP) Flagship grant: Super-High Temperature Resistojets for All-Electric Telecommunication Satellites (STAR). The thruster is at TRL 5, with Engineering Models under production and the qualification campaign set to be completed by Q2-2021. The project consortium corresponds to the supply chain of the thruster.
The innovative heater technology has also broader applications, currently under investigation through the project HEETS (Highly Efficient Electro-Thermal System) funded by the ICURe programme (SETsquared).
In the clip: STAR thruster during testing in thermal vacuum chamber pulsing at a maximum temperature of 2,400 K.
Manufacturing of a high-temperature resistojet heat exchanger by selective laser melting
Numerical study of a novel monolithic heat exchanger for electrothermal space propulsion
Validation of an additively manufactured resistojet through experimental and computational analysis
Endurance testing of the additively manufactured STAR resistojet
Novel Non-Destructive Inspection of the STAR Additively Manufactured Resistojet