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Steady-State Irradiation of Characterized Instruments for Nuclear Thermal Rockets Using In-Pile Experiment Apparatus

by Dan Floyd, Tyler R Steiner, Emily N Hutchins, Richard Wood, Nora D Ezell
Publication Type
Journal Name
Nuclear Technology
Publication Date
Page Numbers
1 to 11

The development of nuclear rocket technology is critical for further exploration of extra-terrestrial bodies. Nuclear rockets can provide various advantages over current chemical rockets. However, the harsh environment provides several challenges regarding instrument performance. Temperature extremes, radiation (reactor and space), and the inability to conduct traditional maintenance activities can lead to severe degradation in instrument performance. To better understand the effects of radiation on instrumentation, an irradiation campaign has been designed to test a set of instruments provided by a collaborator in the aerospace industry. Details concerning instrument performance before and after irradiation are provided to allow for an analysis of the tested instruments. Additionally, the design of the irradiation test is described in detail.