NASA plans to build a base and a nuclear power plant on the moon by 2026 and is inviting proposals from companies ready for the challenge.
According to a statement issued by the Department of Energy, the plan will include the construction of a 10-kW class fission surface power system used for demonstration purposes. The plant is to be built and assembled on Earth and then sent to the moon on a launch vehicle. This vehicle will take the plant to orbit the moon, from where a lander will take it to the surface of the satellite.
The demonstration will continue for a year, and if successful, it could open the gates for other missions on both the Moon and Mars.
Anthony Calomino, head of NASA’s nuclear technology portfolio in space technology, said, “Once the technology is proven through demonstration, future systems can be scaled up or for long-term missions to the moon and eventually to Mars.” Multiple units can be used. ” Mission Directorate.
“Four units provide 10 kW of power each, which will provide enough power to set up an outpost on the Moon or Mars. The ability to produce large amounts of electric power on planetary surfaces using a fission surface power system would enable large-scale exploration, installation of human outposts and the use of in situ resources, while there is a possibility of commercialization. “
The Moon’s resources, though unproven, have been the subject of conversation for some time. Over the past decade, several lunar missions have sprung up, trying to locate Earth’s natural satellite for minerals and hydrogen.
The nuclear power plant demonstrator will have the capacity to run for 10 years, according to plans, its generation capacity will be sufficient to deliver electricity equivalent to three to four large homes.
By Irina Slavin for Oilprice.com
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