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Joint radioisotope electric propulsion studies – Neptune system explorer

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dc.contributor.author Khan, M. Omair
dc.contributor.author Amini, Rashied
dc.contributor.author Ervin, Joan
dc.contributor.author Lang, Jared
dc.contributor.author Landau, Damon
dc.contributor.author Oleson, Steven
dc.contributor.author Spilker, Thomas
dc.contributor.author Strange, Nathan
dc.date.accessioned 2013-10-17T22:25:18Z
dc.date.available 2013-10-17T22:25:18Z
dc.date.issued 2011-02-07
dc.identifier.citation Proceedings of Nuclear and Emerging Technologies for Space 2011, Albuquerque, New Mexico, February 7-10, 2011 en_US
dc.identifier.clearanceno 11-2569
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2014/43918
dc.description.abstract The Neptune System Explorer (NSE) mission concept study assessed opportunities to conduct Cassini-like science at Neptune with a radioisotope electric propulsion (REP) based spacecraft. REP is based on powering an electric propulsion (EP) engine with a radioisotope power source (RPS). The NSE study was commissioned under the Joint Radioisotope Electric Propulsion Studies (JREPS) project, which sought to determine the technical feasibility of flagship class REP applications. Within JREPS, special emphasis was given toward identifying tall technology tent poles, as well as recommending any new RPS technology developments that would be required for complicated REP missions. Based on the goals of JREPS, multiple RPS (e.g. thermoelectric and Stirling based RPS) and EP (e.g. Hall and ion engines) technology combinations were traded during the NSE study to determine the most favorable REP design architecture. Among the findings from the study was the need for >400We RPS systems, which was driven by EP operating powers and the requirement for a long-lived mission in the deep solar system. Additionally multiple development and implementation risks were identified for the NSE concept, as well as REP missions in general. Among the strengths of the NSE mission would be the benefits associated with RPS and EP use, such as long-term power (~2-3kW) at Neptune and flexible trajectory options for achieving orbit or tours of the Neptune system. Although there are still multiple issues to mitigate, the NSE concept demonstrated distinct advantages associated with using REP for deep space flagship-class missions. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship NASA/JPL en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher Pasadena, CA : Jet Propulsion Laboratory, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, 2011. en_US
dc.subject radioisotope power source (RPS) en_US
dc.subject Joint Radioisotope Electric Propulsion Studies (JREPS) en_US
dc.subject Neptune System Explorer (NSE) en_US
dc.subject electric propulsion (EP) en_US
dc.title Joint radioisotope electric propulsion studies – Neptune system explorer en_US
dc.type Preprint en_US


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