NASA wants nuclear reactors on the Moon

As part of NASA’s Artemis lunar project, the US is funding the design of small nuclear reactors that could power space exploration

NASA wants nuclear reactors on the Moon
22 Jun, 2022 00:42 HomeWorld News

NASA wants nuclear reactors on the Moon

US space agency is funding fission power systems through Project Artemis

NASA would like to have nuclear power reactors for lunar and planetary expeditions, the US space agency said on Tuesday, announcing three contracts for developing concept designs by the end of the decade, in partnership with the Department of Energy. Military-industrial behemoth Lockheed Martin is one of the companies involved, along with the nuclear veteran Westinghouse.

“fission surface power system” ready to launch by the end of the decade. John Wagner, director of the DOE’s Idaho National Laboratory, called the project “a very achievable first step toward the US establishing nuclear power on the Moon.” 

NASA said.

“Developing these early designs will help us lay the groundwork for powering our long-term human presence on other worlds,” said Jim Reuter of NASA's Space Technology Mission Directorate.

“continuous power regardless of location, available sunlight, and other natural environmental conditions,” the space agency said. NASA also hopes to get “critical information” from the nuclear industry that could lead to developing atomic propulsion systems for deep space exploration missions.

no longer on track to achieve that, citing lack of funding.