Review of chemical-electric multimode space propulsion

Joshua L. Rovey, Christopher T. Lyne, Alex J. Mundahl, Nicolas Rasmont, Matthew S. Glascock, Mitchell J. Wainwright, Steven P. Berg

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Multimode propulsion is the integration of two or more propulsive modes into a single spacecraft propulsion system. In a multimode propulsion system, the key attribute is shared propellant between the different propulsive modes. Multimode propulsion is emerging as an enabling technology that promises enhanced capabilities for spacecraft and space missions, and can therefore play an important role in the future of in-space propulsion. Specifically, multimode propulsion has potential to provide unprecedented flexibility and adaptability to spacecraft, as well as provide mass savings for certain missions. These benefits extend to both medium and large spacecraft, as well as small satellites. Numerous multimode concepts have been explored and documented in the literature. Concepts combining cold gas, monopropellant, bipropellant, and solid chemical propulsion with electrothermal, electrostatic, and electromagnetic electric propulsion have all been investigated. Electrospray electric propulsion paired with monopropellant chemical propulsion has perhaps received the most recent attention. We review the concept of multimode propulsion, mission analyses, benefits, and specific multimode concepts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAIAA Propulsion and Energy Forum and Exposition, 2019
PublisherAmerican Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Inc, AIAA
ISBN (Print)9781624105906
StatePublished - 2019
EventAIAA Propulsion and Energy Forum and Exposition, 2019 - Indianapolis, United States
Duration: Aug 19 2019Aug 22 2019

Publication series

NameAIAA Propulsion and Energy Forum and Exposition, 2019


ConferenceAIAA Propulsion and Energy Forum and Exposition, 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited States

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy(all)
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Review of chemical-electric multimode space propulsion'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this