Through the application of a new approach to energy analysis to microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), the Flat Plasma Spectrometer (FlaPS) presented here provides a solution to the investigation of plasma distributions in space. It is capable of measuring the kinetic energy and angular distributions of ions/electrons in the space environment for energies ranging from a few eV to 50keV. A single pixel of a FlaPS instrument has been designed, built and tested to occupy a volume of approximately one cubic centimeter, and is characterized by a high throughput-to-volume ratio, making it an ideal component for small-scale satellites. The focus of this paper is on the design, fabrication, simulation, and testing of the instrument front end that consists of a collimator, parallel plate energy analyzer, and energy selector mask. Advanced micro-fabrication techniques enable fabrication of the miniature plasma spectrometer with geometric factor 4.9x10-5 cm2-sr per pixel and an entrance aperture area of 0.01cm2. Arrays of narrow collimator channels with 4° angular divergence and high transmission allow energy analysis of ions/electrons without the need for focusing, the key feature that enables large mass reduction. It is also shown that the large plate factors achievable with this approach to energy analysis offers definite advantages in reducing the need for excessively high voltages.