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NASA, Frontier Aerospace Test Lunar Lander Thrusters Ahead of Artemis Mission

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Frontier Aerospace and NASA have completed testing of two prototype thruster systems being developed to support landers for the Commercial Lunar Payload Services program and the Artemis mission in 2024.

NASA said Wednesday the 10-day assessment included 60 hot-fire tests to evaluate the capacity of two thrusters that Frontier Aerospace built under the agency’s Thruster for the Advancement of Low-temperature Operation in Space program.

The NASA and Frontier Aerospace team simulated spaceflight conditions and collected data on factors such as pressure, temperature and combustion chamber stability to evaluate the TALOS thrusters’ capacity.

“NASA will soon verify this versatile thruster design for space so that the agency and commercial companies can easily implement the technology in future missions,” said Greg Barnett, project manager for TALOS at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center.

Astrobotic Technology, a contractor under the CLPS effort, intends to use the thrusters to power its Peregrine lunar lander that will carry science and technology payloads to the lunar surface in 2021.