Airbus and Northrop Grumman to develop power system for Lunar Gateway Station


Credits: Airbus

Strasbourg, 11 January 2022 - Airbus Crisa, an affiliate company of Airbus, along with Northrop Grumman will be developing the Power Management and Distribution (PMAD) system for the Habitation and Logistics Outpost (HALO). The contract worth more than $50 million will provide key addition to NASA’s Artemis programme.


The new Lunar Gateway station, scheduled for launch in 2024, will initially have two modules and will be expanded in successive years to five modules. The station is intended to serve as a space laboratory as well as an intermediate logistics post for future trips to the surface of the Moon and on to Mars. The two initial modules are known as PPE and HALO. PPE (Power and Propulsion Element) has solar arrays that power the station and thrusters that allow it to maintain a stable orbit around the Moon. HALO is the Habitation and Logistics Outpost module where the astronauts will live during the estimated 40 days of the first missions.


The PMAD has four power units and will manage the electricity from the solar panels of the Power and Propulsion Element (PPE). It will distribute the power to onboard equipment and the rest of the station as required, always ensuring the safety of the crew on board. The PMAD will power the life support system, the interior lighting, the communications systems and the scientific experiments. It will ensure that HALO's battery remains at optimal levels and is ready for use when the panels do not receive sufficient sunlight. PMAD must also provide power to visiting vehicles when they dock.



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