Boeing Palomar Micro CubeSat Propulsion System

boeing-palomar-micro-propulsion-system-v2The Boeing Palomar Micro CubeSat Propulsion System is a fully integrated CubeSat micro propulsion system that includes a propellant tank, plenum and eight thrusters. The Palomar MiPS is designed to occupy the center of a 3U CubeSat. This smart module is designed to interface with the spacecraft through an I2C data bus for command and control.

The Palomar Micro Propulsion System is primarily a reaction control system with thrusters arranged so that use of all six degrees of freedom (DoF) in rotation and translation are possible.

Additional propellant is available by stretching the tank lobes, allowing for a custom propulsion module mass and volume based on specific mission needs.

Upgrades to other propellants available.


  • Over 200,000 thruster firings in a simulated space environment
  • Ten frictionless valves for thrust, plenum pressure regulation, and filling
  • Eight independent thrusters
  • Simple command protocol for operation and health monitoring
  • Liquid isobutane propellant provides high storage density; other propellants available
  • Complete propulsion system in one monolithic
  • 5V power supply and I2C serial data interface
Max Operating Pressure 150 psia Cycle Life 120,000 firings
Proof Pressure 225 psia Total Impulse 85 N/sec
Burst Pressure 375 psia Minimum Impulse Bit 0.75 mN/sec
Thrust 35 mN Operating Voltage 4.75 to 5.25 vdc
Internal Leakage 3.0 scc/hr Peak Power <5 watts (two thrusters)
External Leakage 1.0 x 10 -6 scch Dry Mass 890 grams
Operating Temperature 0°C to +50°C Propellant Mass 173 grams
Non-Operating Temperature -10°C to +60°C Total Mass 1,063 grams
Vibration 23 Grms

Performance characteristics are based on customer requirements. As such, they are not representative of component capabilities or limitations.

Envelope Drawing


Flow Schematic