Nasa’s lunar atmosphere dust environment explorer (LADEE) spacecraft is to be equipped with a propulsion system from Space Systems / Loral (SS/L).

LADEE is a small observatory that will study the moon’s thin atmosphere and dust above the lunar surface.

The 130kg spacecraft will be launched on a Minotaur V launch vehicle.

The propulsion system for the satellite will be a variant of the system used on SS/L’s geostationary satellites for television, radio, broadband internet, meteorology and other services.

LADEE is scheduled for lift-off in May 2012.