NASA Sets Record with Ion Thrusters Test

Kenneth Rosen
NASA Sets Record with Ion Thrusters Test
Sunita Williams

NASA has completed a 43,000 hour stress test -- a record for ion thrusters -- on a new rocket propulsion system that could extend future space travel to farther reaches of the solar system.

Developed by NASA's Evolutionary Xenon Thruster Project, the 7-kilowatt ion thruster can burn 10-12 times longer than the conventional chemical thrusters used today. Though not practical for manned-spaceflight, the system could power exploratory rockets that reach outer planets and their moons.

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To find out more, watch the video above and let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Photo courtesy of NASA

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Sunita Williams

Captain Williams is a NASA astronaut who recently completed the first triathlon in space.

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This story originally published on Mashable here.