Assessment of the US Industrial Program for AMTEC Development 929065

The Alkali Metal Thermal to Electric Converter (AMTEC) is a static energy conversion technology that is expected to provide low mass thermal to electric conversion with efficiencies between 20 and 35%. The US program to develop this technology for space power applications has grown substantially over the past 3 years. This expanding program has brought together several laboratories and technical consultants, in separately sponsored projects, to develop the key elements of the technology. An assessment of this multi-party program indicates that, in general, the effort has focused on the high priority technical elements with only moderate overlap between individual projects. There are, however, several areas where additional coordination is needed between major participants in the existing projects, and other areas where new projects should be started, in order to provide reliable space power systems without unnecessary delays.


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