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Reactor/Brayton power systems for nuclear electric spacecraftStudies are currently underway to assess the technological feasibility of a nuclear-reactor-powered spacecraft propelled by electric thrusters. This vehicle would be capable of performing detailed exploration of the outer planets of the solar system during the remainder of this century. The purpose of this study was to provide comparative information on a closed cycle gas turbine power conversion system. The results have shown that the performance is very competitive and that a 400 kWe space power system is dimensionally compatible with a single Space Shuttle launch. Performance parameters of system mass and radiator area were determined for systems from 100 to 1000 kWe. A 400 kWe reference system received primary attention. The components of this system were defined and a conceptual layout was developed with encouraging results. The preliminary mass determination for the complete power system was very close to the desired goal of 20 kg/kWe. Use of more advanced technology (higher turbine inlet temperature) will substantially improve system performance characteristics.
Document ID
19800064087
Document Type
Conference Proceedings
Authors
Layton, J. P.
Date Acquired
August 10, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1980
Subject Category
SPACECRAFT PROPULSION AND POWER
Meeting Information
Energy to the 21st century(Seattle, WA)
Funding Number(s)
CONTRACT_GRANT: JPL-955008
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Other