HOW OUR TECHNOLOGY WORKS

Our thrusters take a different approach to generating ions, compared to traditional ion engines.

Ionic Liquid

Our thrust-producing ions are supplied from our ionic liquid propellant — a safe, non-toxic liquid salt. This novel source of ions allows us to avoid the use of large ionization chambers, pressurized tanks, bulky valves, and external cathodes.

Thruster “Chips”

Our technology is built around a thruster “chip” architecture. Each chip houses hundreds of microscopic emitters that produce beams of ions generated from our novel propellant source: ionic liquid.

Generating Thrust
Similar to traditional ion engines, our systems produce thrust by using electric fields to accelerate ions. Ions leave the thruster chips through small holes in the extractor grids over each chip, and propel the spacecraft in the opposite direction.

 

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BENEFITS OF ION ELECTROSPRAY PROPULSION

  • Smaller, simpler design. No need for an ionization chamber, valves, pipes, external neutralizing cathode, or active pumping or pressurization in Accion's thrusters.

  • Conversion efficiency. Up to 60 percent higher than plasma thrusters.

  • Wide thermal stability. The thermal stability of ionic liquid ranges from roughly –100 to 400°C.

  • Batch manufacturing techniques used to fabricate our thrusters allow for increased reliability and reduced cost.

  • Reduced lifecycle cost. Due to safety of propellants.

  • Rideshare safe. The passive nature of our non-toxic, non-explosive ionic liquid propellant allows our thrusters to comply with all rideshare and launch regulations.


UNPARALLELED POTENTIAL OF ION ELECTROSPRAY

The underlying physics of our thruster technology allow for much greater thrust density compared to conventional electric propulsion options. As we continue to reduce pitch — the distance between the emitter tips on each thruster chip — we'll develop engines that can do more for their size than any other propulsion system.