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Kilowatt-Class Fission Power Systems for Science and Human Precursor MissionsNuclear power provides an enabling capability for NASA missions that might otherwise be constrained by power availability, mission duration, or operational robustness. NASA and the Department of Energy (DOE) are developing fission power technology to serve a wide range of future space uses. Advantages include lower mass, longer life, and greater mission flexibility than competing power system options. Kilowatt-class fission systems, designated "Kilopower," were conceived to address the need for systems to fill the gap above the current 100-Wclass radioisotope power systems being developed for science missions and below the typical 100-kWe-class reactor power systems being developed for human exploration missions. This paper reviews the current fission technology project and examines some Kilopower concepts that could be used to support future science missions or human precursors.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Glenn Research Center
Document Type
Conference Paper
Mason, Lee
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Gibson, Marc
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Poston, Dave
(Los Alamos Scientific Lab. NM, United States)
Date Acquired
September 15, 2014
Publication Date
February 25, 2013
Subject Category
Fluid Mechanics And Thermodynamics
Report/Patent Number
Meeting Information
Meeting: Nuclear and Emerging Technologies for Space
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Country: Mexico
Start Date: February 25, 2013
End Date: February 28, 2013
Sponsors: American Nuclear Society
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 887359.
Distribution Limits
Public Use Permitted.
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