To power up space missions and colonies on other worlds, NASA has tested a new type of reactor. It has prepared the nuclear reactor in collaboration with US department of energy. This nuclear reactor can provide juice to human colonies on the Moon and the Mars for more than a decade. It also has the ability to power up several homes. It can even resist the harsh environment on both these planets. This nuclear rocket uses conventional uranium fuel. This uranium fuel is long lasting and can provide 10 kilowatts of energy.
The researchers and scientists have tested this Kilopower reactor in America’s Nevada desert. They have operated this reactor at full power for about 28 hours. They have also tested its core components. These tests prove that it would not melt even after failure in operations. This discovery will prove a lot helpful for future space probes. Here, it is worth mentioning that NASA is trying to colonize both the Moon and the Mars at some time in future. The power supply has always remained a great hurdle in various space missions.
The researchers have used various kinds of fuels from Pluto’s probe to Curiosity Rover. They say that nuclear power is the only durable and long lasting source. Here, it is very interesting to note that the two spacecraft’s sent to space in 1977 are still phoning home. They are using the power generated by a little quantity of Plutonium that they carried with them. But, due to lack of production of Plutonium, they are now using Uranium in this new nuclear reactor. It would operate through fission process that is being used in atomic bombs on the Earth.
Uranium-235 is an ideal substance to use for fuel core in this Kilopower nuclear reactor. They have also used a sheet of Beryllium for accelerating the fission process.