Accession Number : AD0821357

Title :   DESIGN AND TEST OF A SNAPOODLE THERMOELECTRIC GENERATOR.

Descriptive Note : Final rept. Jul 65-May 67,

Corporate Author : TRW SYSTEMS GROUP REDONDO BEACH CA

Personal Author(s) : Lurie, Henry ; Leventhal, E. Lee ; Grossman, Irwin

Report Date : AUG 1967

Pagination or Media Count : 201

Abstract : A thermoelectric converter designed to operate with SNAPOODLE, a hybrid radioisotope thruster/electric power generator, was designed, and a section of the converter (the same diameter but one-third the length) was tested by TRW Systems. The full size converter was designed to deliver 220 watts at 6 volts with a thermal power input of 5 kw. In addition, the converter was to operate over a range of thermal power inputs. Detailed analyses were performed, including thermal analyses of the combined converter/thruster system. The effects of propellant flow through the thruster and mission life on performance and system weight were determined. Current-voltage curves were obtained from the test converter at several power input levels, and a 1500-hour test was conducted with an average hot-shoe temperature of 1000 C. An initial overall conversion efficiency of 4.15 percent was obtained, and a 7.5 percent reduction in power was noted during the 1500-hour test. In accordance with anticipated converter behavior, the rate of power decrease had diminished appreciably by the time the 1500-hour test was complete. A study was also made of the potential advantages of radioisotope hybrid power/propulsion systems. The results of this study showed that for short duration, low altitude missions, hybrid systems using either ammonia or hydrogen propellant look attractive. For long duration missions, the isotope systems appear to be competitive with the more conventional systems. (Author)

Descriptors :   *GENERATORS), (*THERMOELECTRICITY, (*ELECTRIC POWER PRODUCTION, THERMOELECTRICITY), THERMOCOUPLES, SILICON, GERMANIUM, SPACECRAFT NUCLEAR PROPULSION, RADIOACTIVE ISOTOPES, POLONIUM, HEAT, THRUST, THERMAL ANALYSIS, ELECTRIC PROPULSION, MANNED SPACECRAFT, SPACE FLIGHT, GASEOUS ROCKET PROPELLANTS.

Subject Categories : Electric Power Production and Distribution

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE