FURI | Spring 2019

Structural Optimization of CubeSat Housing for Pulsed Plasma Thruster (PPT) Modules

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CubeSats are small, affordable satellites that carry scientific payloads into space. PPTs (Pulsed Plasma Thrusters) are a method of propulsion that ablates Teflon to produce thrust for CubeSats. These compact thrusters must be aligned to ensure accurate and reliable propulsion. This alignment is ensured by structural design and optimization. The proper selection of materials and design for the CubeSat casing ensures mission success and reliable control once the satellite is in orbit. Reliable operation of CubeSats supports it as an affordable and accessible method of conducting science in space and encourages the commercialization of space ventures.

Student researcher

Isaiah Edward Wall

Aerospace engineering

Hometown: Chicago, Illinois, United States

Graduation date: Spring 2020

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