BepiColombo's ion thrusters pass first test enroute to Mercury

ESA’s BepiColombo spacecraft enters the record books as it fires up its four ion thrusters for the first time. On November 20, 2018 at at 12:33 pm CET (11:33 GMT), the first of the thrusters that make up the most powerful solar electric propulsion system ever to be launched into space went into Thrust Mode, generating a force of 75 mN and on Sunday, the unmanned Mercury probe used two of its thrusters to carry out its first course maneuver…
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