Heat Pipe Emitters for Thermionic Fuel Elements

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Missile Defense Agency
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 18178
Amount: $68,895.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 1992
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
780 Eden Road, Lancaster, PA, 17601
DUNS: N/A
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Kevin Horner-richardson
 (717) 569-6551
Business Contact
Phone: () -
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
Isothermalizing a Thermionic Fuel Element (TFE) may increase efficiency from 8.78% to 10.8%. Phase I will design an isothermal heat pipe for the thin emitter wall of a long TFE. Recently demonstrated two-phase flow in sintered power metal wick structures will be used to achieve isothermal conditions in heat pipes. Hardware will be tested to demonstrate the principle. A successful design will also permit out-of-core thermionic reactors whereby a heat pipe delivers heat from the core to the thermionic unit, circumventing current problems of fuel swelling, neutron damage and life expectancy and allowing simplification of future designs.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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