Measurements of Fission-Fragment Ionizaton Phenomena

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Defense
Branch
Missile Defense Agency
Amount:
$68,067.00
Award Year:
1993
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
n/a
Agency Tracking Number:
19616
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
n/a
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
Science & Engineering Associat
Sea Plaza, 6100 Uptown Blvd., Ne, Suite 700, Albuquerque, NM, 87110
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
n/a
Principal Investigator:
James D. Cramer
(505) 884-2300
Business Contact:
() -
Research Institution:
n/a
Abstract
AN ADVANCED REACTOR WITH A 50-75% EFFICIENT ELECTRICAL ENERGY CONVERSION PROCESS INCORPORATED WITHIN A CORE COMPRISED OF FUEL AND MODERATOR PROVIDES OPTIONS HERETOFORE UNREALIZED. IN PRINCIPLE, THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE FEASIBILITY OF SUCH A COMPACT REACTOR COULD BE MET WITH THE DEVELOPMENT OF ENERGY CONVERSION MATERIALS THAT COULD OPERATE EFFICIENTLY IN THE HOSTILE RADIATION ENVIRONMENT OF SUBSTAINED NUCLEAR REACTION. CANDIDATE MATERIALS FOR SUCH ENERGY-CONVERSION ARE, FOR EXAMPLE, BORON-RICH COMPOUNDS THAT HAVE BEEN PROPOSED AS HIGH TEMPERATURE THERMOELECTRIC MATERIALS. MOST OF THE ENERGY LOSS OF A FISSION-FRAGMENT IN A SOLID IS CONVERTED TO IONIZATION OF THE SURROUNDING MATERIAL. THE IONIZATION ENERGY OF NEUTRON-INDUCED FISSION-FRAGMENTS COULD BE USED TO GENERATE ELECTRICAL ENERGY IN SUCH MATERIALS WITH EFFICIENCIES APPROACHING 75% COMPARED TO THE 5-10% PRESENTLY ACHIEVED WITH THERMAL EXCITATION. THE GENERAL REQUIREMENTS FOR THIS CONVERSION PROCESS ARE THAT THE FISSILE MATERIAL MUST BE EMBEDDED IN OR NEAR THE DEVICE WITHIN THE RANGE OF THE FRAGMENTS. THE INNOVATION PRESENTED HERE IS METHOD TO EASILY SIMULATING THE ENERGY DEPOSIT OF FISSION-FRAGMENTS IN CANDIDATE ENERGY-CONVERSION MATERIALS AND TO MEASURE DEVICE PERFORMANCE IN THE LABORATORY. ION BEAMS CAPABLE OF SIMULATING THE ENERGY AND MASS OF FISSION-FRAGMENTS ARE AVAILABLE TO SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING ASSOCIATES, INC. AT BOTH SANDIA NATIONAL LABORATORIES AND LOS ALAMOS NATIONAL LABORATORY.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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