ISS Astronauts Test RINGS Propulsion Tech

nsaIn the latest development, scientists at the laboratory of Space Power and Propulsion at the University of Maryland have prepared a solution to move a single and small spacecraft with the help of electromagnets. The solution is called as Resonant Inductive Near-field Generation System (RINGS). This development is very crucial for the formation flying of satellites.

The solution will allow the smaller Satellites to fly without carrying any sort of propellant. The individual satellites can now fly with this Electromagnetic Propulsion Technology.

In this technology the small satellites change their polarity in order to attract or repel the other satellite. This keeps the centre of gravity to be one for all the satellites. Till now, smaller satellites required propellant to move in formation and to stick to their position, but that increases their weight and also reduces their service life.

Although, the researchers have performed few gravity tests in a NASA plane, yet some units are sent to the International Space Station for better and long tests. The scientists would conduct four sessions to test the performance of RINGS on the ISS and would send it back to the Earth for further analysis.

Formation flying is used for performing crucial jobs in the space without taking the help of large satellites. In this method, small satellites fly in a coordinated pattern. Sensor arrays are used to change the direction of these satellites.