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NASA’s great plan for tax-payer funded nuclear reactors on Mars

U.S. tests nuclear power system to sustain astronauts on Mars – #SCIENCE NEWS, JANUARY 19, 2018, Will Dunham, WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Initial tests in Nevada on a compact nuclear power system designed to sustain a long-duration NASA human mission on the inhospitable surface of Mars have been successful and a full-power run is scheduled for March, officials said on Thursday.

Officials from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and U.S. Department of Energy, at a news conference in Las Vegas, detailed the development of the nuclear fission system under NASA’s Kilopower project.

Months-long testing of the system began in November at the energy department’s Nevada National Security Site, with an eye toward providing energy for future human and robotic missions in space and on the surface of Mars, the moon or other solar system destinations………..

“Mars is a very difficult environment for power systems, with less sunlight than Earth or the moon, very cold nighttime temperatures, very interesting dust storms that can last weeks and months that engulf the entire planet,” said Steve Jurczyk, associate administrator of NASA‘s Space Technology Mission Directorate…….

President Donald Trump in December signed a directive intended to pave the way for a return to the moon, with an eye toward an eventual mission to Mars.

 The new system could potentially supply the power human crews on the Martian surface would need to energize habitats and run processing equipment to transform resources such as ice on the planet into oxygen, water and fuel, NASA said………Reporting by Will Dunham; Editing by Tom Brown https://www.reuters.com/article/us-space-nuclear/u-s-tests-nuclear-power-system-to-sustain-astronauts-on-mars-idUSKBN1F72T8
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January 19, 2018 - Posted by | technology, USA

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