With the emergence of the “New Space”, more and more CubeSats are being launched. On these small platforms (CubeSats are made up of one or more standard cubes of 10 cm edge length), several subsystems have to coexist. If electric propulsion solutions help in saving space and weight to be carried on board, their electromagnetic compatibility with onboard communication systems is still questioned.
The ISAE-SUPAERO in collaboration with the CNES and the LAPLACE are currently developing simulation tools and characterization methods to provide engineers with CubeSats sizing tools and efficient testing facilities to address this issue. This experimental bench developed at ISAE-SUPAERO allows the characterization of a plasma discharge representative of an electric thruster, as well as the measurement of its interactions with microwave signals generated by nearby communication antennas. The experimental data obtained will finally allow the calibration of the numerical analysis tools currently being developed by our teams.