On August 30, 2012 NASA’s Radiation Belt Storm Probes (RBSP) were launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. RBSP is the first twin-spacecraft mission designed to explore the Earth’s Van Allen radiation belts, a harsh region of energetic particles and radiation where most satellites avoid operation due to risk of damage. Each of the satellites contain lithium ion battery cells provided by GS Yuasa Lithium Power. The battery cells will provide on board power for each of the satellites throughout the eclipse phase of a highly elliptical Mid-Earth Orbit. The battery cells will recharge from solar panels during the course of each sun facing orbital phase.
“Having worked extensively with Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, which built and will operate the spacecraft for NASA, we are excited by this recent launch and knowing that GS Yuasa is playing a part in this important scientific mission,” said GYLP company President William Moll. “GS Yuasa’s space qualified Lithium ion cells have a well deserved reputation for quality and reliability. With the launch of the two RBSP satellites, GS Yuasa now has more than 1,300,000 watt hours of lithium ion cells on orbit without anomaly or failure. On a total energy storage capacity basis (Wh), GS Yuasa is a world leader in Li-ion for space.”
GS Yuasa has provided battery cells for more than 60 domestic and international satellite programs in recent years. Orbital Science’s Cygnus™ cargo spacecraft that is scheduled to launch later this year will also be powered by GS Yuasa lithium ion cells. The Cygnus™ spacecraft supports NASA’s Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) program for the International Space Station. GS Yuasa completed development of the LSE family of Lithium‐ion cells certified for space applications in 1999 and launched the first LSE cells aboard mission spacecraft by 2005.