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Radial Core Heat Spreader

Completed Technology Project

Project Description

Radial Core Heat Spreader
NASA’s planetary science and human exploration programs are developing long life nuclear power systems to address the growing electrical power requirements of future missions. Typically these power systems convert the nuclear heat to electricity using solid-state thermoelectric conversion. In the past decade, dynamic power conversion has made significant progress using free-piston Stirling convertors, which have shown orders of magnitude improvements in thermal to electric power conversion efficiency. This research aims to flight test an innovative passive thermal control system, called a Radial Core Heat Spreader (RCHS), which couples the Stirling convertor to the heat rejection system and provide up to 10 times the thermal conductance. Also see T0014 and this article.

Presentation at the Ninth International Conference on Two-Phase Systems for Ground and Space Applications Baltimore, MD Sept. 22-26, 2014: Two Phase Titanium Water Heat Pipe for Space Rated Stirling Power Conversion

This technology has been infused in Kilopower. Also see this presentation. More »

Anticipated Benefits

Primary U.S. Work Locations and Key Partners

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