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Estimates of power requirements for a Manned Mars Rover powered by a nuclear reactorThis paper assesses the power requirement for a Manned Mars Rover vehicle. Auxiliary power needs are fulfilled using a hybrid solar photovoltaic/regenerative fuel cell system, while the primary power needs are meet using an SP-100 type reactor. The primary electric power needs, which include 30-kW(e) net user power, depend on the reactor thermal power and the efficiency of the power conversion system. Results show that an SP-100 type reactor coupled to a Free Piston Stirling Engine yields the lowest total vehicle mass and lowest specific mass for the power system. The second lowest mass was for a SP-100 reactor coupled to a Closed Brayton Cycle using He/Xe as the working fluid. The specific mass of the nuclear reactor power system, including a man-rated radiation shield, ranged from 150-kg/kW(e) to 190-kg/KW(e) and the total mass of the Rover vehicle varied depend upon the cruising speed.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Morley, Nicholas J.
(NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
El-Genk, Mohamed S.
(New Mexico Univ. Albuquerque, United States)
Cataldo, Robert
(NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Bloomfield, Harvey
(NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Date Acquired
August 15, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1991
Publication Information
Publication: In: Space nuclear power systems; Proceedings of the 8th Symposium, Albuquerque, NM, Jan. 6-10, 1991. Pt. 1 (A93-13751 03-20)
Subject Category
Ground Support Systems And Facilities (Space)
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits
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