web analytics

NASA: The N.E.X.T. Thing for Space Travel

The ion propulsion system (IPS), provided by NSTAR (NASA SEP Technology Application Readiness), uses a hollow cathode to produce electrons to collisionally ionize xenon. Credit: NASA

The ion propulsion system (IPS), provided by NSTAR (NASA SEP Technology Application Readiness), uses a hollow cathode to produce electrons to collisionally ionize xenon. Credit: NASA

The NASA Evolutionary Xenon Thruster or NEXT is an advanced Ion propulsion system developed at Glenn Research Center. Its unmatched fuel efficiency could give a real boost to future deep space exploration missions — extending the reach of NASA science missions and yielding a higher return on scientific research.