EaglePicher Batteries Powering Mars InSight Lander

November 29, 2018 - EaglePicher® Technologies, the leading producer of battery power solutions for aerospace and defense, provided lithium-ion and thermal batteries to complete NASA’s InSight lander mission to Mars.

Two of EaglePicher’s 8-cell, 28 volt, 30 amp-hour batteries are mounted to InSight’s baseplate and will be used to store solar power that the lander collects. The lithium-ion batteries are from EaglePicher’s Yardney division located in East Greenwich, Rhode Island. This battery design was originally qualified and used in the 2005 Phoenix lander mission.

Today’s version of the battery has a lifespan that will enable it to operate over the several years-long mission. Thanks to a new, remarkable engineering development of electrolyte formulation, the batteries will continue to operate down to -35°C (-31°F) with no lithium plating. This will enable the battery to endure all Martian seasons. EaglePicher batteries were used in the Mars rovers Spirit, Opportunity and Curiosity.

The InSight lander also uses an EaglePicher single-use, non-rechargeable thermal battery to support its main batteries during entry, descent and landing. These batteries are critical to the landing phase. They were used on the deployment subsystems to be able to safely land the vehicle on the surface of Mars. This thermal battery, designed and produced at EaglePicher’s Joplin, Missouri facility, was originally manufactured and qualified for the Mars Exploration rover missions in 2002.

EaglePicher has a long history of supporting America’s space mission. Since the earliest days of space travel, the company’s products have powered launch vehicles, satellites, space research missions, and manned and unmanned missions. In fact, EaglePicher batteries have over 2.5 billion cell hours in space without a mission failure.

EaglePicher looks forward to continuing their partnership with NASA. Chief Executive Officer Gordon Walker says the company is looking to the future, “We are already set up to provide batteries for a 2020 Mars rover mission, continuing the EaglePicher legacy of involvement in space and Mars exploration.”

To learn more about how EaglePicher Technologies products are used in satellite and spacecraft missions, visit www.eaglepicher.com/markets/space.

Image courtesy NASA/JPL-Caltech

About EaglePicher Technologies
EaglePicher Technologies, designs, develops and produces mission-critical power solutions. EaglePicher is an industry leading producer of batteries, battery management systems and energetic devices. For over 75 years, the company has served highly demanding requirements for aerospace, aviation, defense and medical battery applications. As the leading provider of thermal battery systems to the Department of Defense, EaglePicher supplies power for the majority of the U.S. military’s missile and precision guided munitions systems. EaglePicher’s space heritage dates to the earliest days of the U.S. space program, from the first satellite to the Mars rovers. The company has provided lithium-ion batteries to military aircraft and high altitude unmanned aerial vehicles. EaglePicher has nine North American manufacturing and research and development sites and employees over 900 team members. For more information, please visit www.eaglepicher.com.

Media Contact:
Heather Smriga
Marketing Communications Manager
Phone: 417-629-6581
Email address: heather.smriga@eaglepicher.com