NASA has successfully tested its Green Propellant Infusion Mission or GPIM. The craft, which utilizes the green fuel, fired its five thrusters with no issues to be had. This has happened a few days after the launch of a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket, a launch that took place on the 25th of June.
NASA’s GPIM is currently using a new fuel that is more eco-friendly. This fuel has been utilized so that it could be tested in the field. The hope is that it could replace hydrazine, which is toxic and widely used in space missions. The greener fuel has much less toxicity, which is safer for humans as well as the environment. Rocket fuel presents risks of toxicity because it needs to be handled for the preparation of the launch.
The craft’s thrusters engaged in quick succession to lower its orbit. This is done as a testing operation so that mission control can verify system integrity and operation.
NASA successfully tested its Green Propellant Infusion Mission
Christopher Mclean, an investigator at Ball Aerospace, is pleased with the current state of the craft. He comments: “Test operations were flawless and the propulsion subsystem is interacting with the small spacecraft as designed.” “We had a textbook checkout.“
GPIM was primarily designed to test the new rocket fuel. Over a few months, the small craft will give NASA information concerning the performance of the fuel. Mission objectives are testing the fuel and the propulsion system. This will be done by conducting three lowering burns. Taking the craft into a lower orbit.
Upon reaching favorable parameters, the fuel will have more use other than reducing toxicity. It will reduce price as well, making space travel less expensive. The new fuel mixture, with the designation AF-M315E, burns more efficiently than hydrazine by a factor of nearly 50 percent. Higher density also boosts efficiency concerning fuel consumption and storage.
Emmy Skylar started working for Debate Report in 2017. Emmy grew up in a small town in northern Manitoba. But moved to Ontario for university. Before joining Debate Report, Emmy briefly worked as a freelance journalist for CBC News. She covers politics and the economy.