An illustration of a satellite propelled by an air-breathing electric thruster | ESA/Sitael

Air-Breathing Thruster Aims to Power Satellites Almost Indefinitely

The novel European Space Agency technology would scoop up atmospheric nitrogen and oxygen during near-Earth orbits and turn it into fuel.

Air-breathing ion thruster | ESA/Sitael
The test setup for a prototype air-breathing thruster and compressor, visible here inside a vacuum chamber | ESA/Sitael