06 December 2016
A non-toxic propulsion system developed by Chinese scientists will enable satellites to carry more payload and save on satellite launching costs, the system's developer the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation said in a statement. The ammonium dinitramide (ADN) technology used in the system proved successful when it was tested in the Shijian-17 satellite sent into space last month. Shijian-17 is tasked with verifying technology for observation of space debris, new electric sources and electric propulsion. According to scientists, the propulsion system is meant to help an orbiting satellite sustain its altitude as atmospheric drag and gravity can lead to gradual descent in orbit.
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