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NASA to Launch Power Plant on Moon

Nov 15, 2022

NASA and DOE selected three design concept proposals for a fission surface power system design that could potentially be ready to launch on the moon by the end of the decade.

Space science during the last few decades has widely developed and the hunger for discovering the vast and mostly unknown universe is growing immensely. Many scientists and space exploration agencies are in continuous search of cutting-edge technology for exploring space and for these explorations and research energy emerges as a key factor.

NASA and DOE(Department Of Energy) researchers recently tested technology for developing a Nuclear Fission reactor that could power a human outpost on the moon or Mars.

A Nuclear Fission reactor produces electricity by splitting atoms and releasing energy in the form of heat. The new nuclear power system is part of NASA's project which started in 2006 called Fission Surface Power which researches and develops designs to use in outer space.

Nuclear power is being considered for lunar and space missions because, unlike other alternatives like solar power, it can provide continuous energy for the human life support system, recharge gadgets, robots, and rovers, power for mining resources, and many more. Nuclear power does not require storage devices(batteries or fuel cells) like solar systems which add up the unwanted mass into the system. A nuclear power system in space can be more reliable as it does not depend upon the sun as solar systems do. Fission Surface Power can provide abundant and continuous power regardless of any environmental and climatical conditions on the Moon or Mars.

In 2021, in partnership with NASA, the DOE issued a Request for Proposal asking American companies to design concepts for a fission surface power system that could be ready to launch within a decade for a demonstration on the Moon. In June 2022 NASA and DOE selected three design concept proposals for a fission surface power system design that could potentially be ready to launch by the end of the decade. This system would then be demonstrated on the moon. NASA plans to demonstrate and use a fission surface power system first on the moon, followed by Mars.

Fission Surface Power can soon be seen working and hopefully playing an important role in future space expeditions, which could increase the time spent on space for research and can be a sustainable energy resource with less harm to the environment.

FORCE is an energy-saving product of ENPOSS that can be used with any electricity-using facilities that use the energy produced from nuclear fission to save electricity by increasing the flow of electricity and reducing the loss of electricity also contributing to saving electricity utility bills and reducing greenhouse gases produced by electricity generation.

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