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Title: Reference reactor module for NASA's lunar surface fission power system

Surface fission power systems on the Moon and Mars may provide the first US application of fission reactor technology in space since 1965. The Affordable Fission Surface Power System (AFSPS) study was completed by NASA/DOE to determine the cost of a modest performance, low-technical risk surface power system. The AFSPS concept is now being further developed within the Fission Surface Power (FSP) Project, which is a near-term technology program to demonstrate system-level TRL-6 by 2013. This paper describes the reference FSP reactor module concept, which is designed to provide a net power of 40 kWe for 8 years on the lunar surface; note, the system has been designed with technologies that are fully compatible with a Martian surface application. The reactor concept uses stainless-steel based. UO{sub 2}-fueled, pumped-NaK fission reactor coupled to free-piston Stirling converters. The reactor shielding approach utilizes both in-situ and launched shielding to keep the dose to astronauts much lower than the natural background radiation on the lunar surface. The ultimate goal of this work is to provide a 'workhorse' power system that NASA can utilize in near-term and future Lunar and Martian mission architectures, with the eventual capability to evolve to very high power, low massmore » systems, for either surface, deep space, and/or orbital missions.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [4]
  1. Los Alamos National Laboratory
  2. INL
  3. ORNL
  4. SNL
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
988332
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-09-02470; LA-UR-09-2470
TRN: US1006674
DOE Contract Number:
AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: Nuclear and Emerging Technologies for Space 2009 ; June 15, 2009 ; Atlanta, GA
Research Org:
Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL)
Sponsoring Org:
DOE
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
21; ASTRONAUTS; BACKGROUND RADIATION; FISSION; NASA; PERFORMANCE; POWER SYSTEMS; REACTOR TECHNOLOGY; SHIELDING