Faculty Advisor

Gatsonis, Nikolaos A.

Project Center

MIT Lincoln Laboratory-Lexington, Massachusetts


This project presents the design and fabrication of a hydrogen peroxide six-axis propulsion system for picosatellites. An experimental test setup is designed and fabricated with a torsional thrust stand for measurements of the steady-state thrust. The setup includes a thrust block, a catalyst block, a feed system, and sensors for measuring the chamber pressure and temperature. Safety procedures are established. The optimum catalyst bed-length is established with analytical modeling assuming operation with 98 weight percent hydrogen peroxide. Nitrogen, helium, and water pressurization tests are performed as well as a nitrogen firing test and a valve-actuation test. Experimentation under atmospheric conditions and a chamber pressure of 95 psia shows approximately 0.6 N of thrust.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

October 2015


Aerospace Engineering


Mechanical Engineering

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project


Restricted-WPI community only

Advisor Department

Mechanical Engineering

Your accessibility may vary due to other restrictions.