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Radiation heating in selected NERVA engine componentsThe role of heating from nuclear radiation in design of the NERVA engine is treated. Some components are subjected to very high gamma heating rates in excess of 0.5 Btu/cubic inch/sec in steel in the primary nozzle or 0.25 Btu/cubic inch/sec in aluminum in the pressure vessel. These components must be cooled by a fraction of the liquid hydrogen propellant before it is passed through the core, heated, and expanded out the nozzle as a gas. Other components that are subjected to lower heating rates such as the thrust structure and the disk shield are designed so that they would not require liquid hydrogen cooling. Typical gamma and neutron heating rates, resulting temperatures, and their design consequences are discussed. Calculational techniques used in the nuclear and thermal analyses of the NERVA engine are briefly treated.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Courtney, J. C. (Aerojet Nuclear Systems Co. Sacramento, CA, United States)
Hertelendy, N. A. (Aerojet Nuclear Systems Co. Sacramento, CA, United States)
Lindsey, B. A. (Aerojet Nuclear Systems Co. Sacramento, CA, United States)
Date Acquired
August 6, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1972
Publication Information
Publication: NASA, Washington Proc. of the Natl. Symp. on Nat. and Manmade Radiation in Space
Subject Category
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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IDRelationTitle19720009951Analytic PrimaryProceedings of the National Symposium on Natural and Manmade Radiation in Space