The fully integrated ENPULSION NEO thruster is a highly specialized small satellite propulsion system. It is especially apt for the mobility requirements of small and medium-sized spacecraft. With no fluidic control system or external tanks, the integration of this small satellite electric propulsion system is as simple as bolting the thruster head and electronics on their respective panels and connecting the harness. The ENPULSION NEO thruster is designed to fit within a 15-inch ESPA class separation ring.

The ENPULSION small satellite propulsion system

To best meet the mobility requirements for small satellites – or “SmallSats” – the ENPULSION NEO thruster is designed for compactness, precision, reliability, and highest specific impulse, and draws on the learnings of close to 200 ENPULSION propulsion systems already in space.

Covering the mobility requirements of spacecraft of 200 to 1.000 kg, the ENPULSION NEO is designed for ease of integration. The thruster head combines emission surface, propellant, as well as propellant tanks and features no valves, fill plugs or flow controllers. It is easily bolted on the external panel of a spacecraft with minimal thermal requirements. The thruster head fits inside a number of 15-inch ESPA class separation rings.

Enpulsion Neo Thruster
Enpulsion Thrusters Satellite Classes Overview

SmallSat electric propulsion – highest ISP, precision, and robustness

With approximately two thousand ion-emission sites this small satellite propulsion system is inherently resilient to micro-damage. In addition, the electronics architecture is designed around parallel high voltage supplies to increase system robustness.

With its high specific impulse (> 2 500 s) and propellant density four times higher than xenon the NEO thruster system is both more compact and lighter than traditional electric propulsion systems.

FEEP – mature and reliable technology

Field Emission Electric Propulsion (FEEP) technology produces thrust by ions and an applied electrostatic field. By changing the field’s parameters, thrust and specific impulse can be varied as required. In a FEEP thruster, the solid metal propellant indium is liquified in orbit and a strong electrostatic field extracts, ionizes, and accelerates the propellant from the ion emitter.

Indium is the ideal alternative propellant. It is a widely available metal primarily used in semi-conductor manufacturing. It is a by-product of zinc refining and has a yearly production of around 1 000 tons shared between several countries. It is non-toxic as well as unpressurised in all phases of integration and flight.

The ENPULSION FEEP technology has no moving parts, and the propellant is in solid state during launch. In addition, it does not require pressurized tanks and no gaseous, liquid, or reactive propellants. This avoids any risks of propellant containment during launch.

ENPULSION’s electric propulsion systems do not feature any pressurized components, and no hazardous materials, which makes testing, integration and launch preparation as easy as possible.

Heritage and reliability

With close to 200 propulsion systems in space, more than 300 propulsion systems delivered to customers worldwide and more than 150 years of accumulated on-orbit operation, ENPULSION is the world’s leading manufacturer of electric propulsion systems for nano- and microsatellites.

ENPULSION is supporting more than 40 customers on 4 continents from its headquarters in Austria, as well offices in the US and France. Its products are based on the company’s proprietary Field-Emission Electric Propulsion (FEEP) technology, behind which are more than 30 years of research and development work in cooperation with the European Space Agency (ESA) and the FOTEC Research Facility.

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    Felix is what you call a global citizen. He grew up on 3 different continents and has called Buenos Aires, Chicago, Brussels as well as Athens his home. Naturally, Felix is also passionate about travelling and especially enjoys all kinds of water sports. For example, you can regularly catch him stand up paddleboarding in the early morning. Prior to joining ENPULSION Felix worked in Business & Strategy Consulting in Austria’s largest Banking Group and thus brings more than 5 years of experience in the Financial and Banking sector to the Management team. Besides, Felix’s future-oriented, clear-sighted approach to planning allows ENPULSION to tackle new challenges well-prepared.

    CEO & Founder

    Alexander Reissner started his career in the space business with RUAG Space, working in Thermal Hardware and later in Mechanical Engineering on projects like Sentinel or Bepi Colombo. He then joined the Austrian Institute of Technology and became the Team Leader for Electric Propulsion Systems. In 2013, he became the head of the Department of Aerospace Engineering shortly after it was moved to FOTEC. After growing this department from 5 to 17 scientists and engineers, he realized the potential of the FEEP technology in the SmallSat market and founded ENPULSION. His education took him from a Dipl.Ing. (MSc) in Physics at the Technical University of Vienna to the Korean Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) in South Korea where he started a PhD program in Aerospace Engineering. He then followed his supervisor to the Technical University of Dresden where he finished his PhD Program. Alexander Reissner was also appointed to be the General Chair of the International Electric Propulsion Conference (IEPC) in 2019, which took place in Vienna.

    CHRO & Co-Founder

    Thomas likes to make sure everything works smoothly, efficiently and he is always ready to solve a problem. He has a master’s degree in political science as well as specialized higher education in international business communications. He is additionally an ISO/IEC certified trainer and safety chancellor. Thomas brings to ENPULSION over ten years of work experience in project and general operations management. He has previously worked at the University of Vienna, the Vienna Chamber of Labor, and most recently at Casinos Austria, a worldwide, leading player in the global gaming industry. When he is not helping ENPULSION to thrive and reach its fullest potential, Thomas enjoys traveling, strolling through his home town Vienna, and grilling the perfect steak on his terrace!


    David is a Research Associate at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and avid traveller. He received his M.S. in applied physics in 2008, and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering in 2012 from Vienna University of Technology, Austria, and a M.A. in political science in 2012 from University of Vienna. Before joining ENPULSION, he was Research Scientist in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics working on the design and characterization of micromachined ionic liquid electrospray thrusters, which include multiple flight experiments. Before joining MIT's Space Propulsion Laboratory, he embarked on trip across the world, writing post-doc grant proposals along the way; secretly it was for beaches and sun. Aside from some teaching, he was previously working on the development of various types of electric and chemical propulsion systems. He worked on chemical green bi-propellant thrusters for small satellites and pulsed plasma thrusters for CubeSats at FOTEC and the Austrian Institute of Technology.

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