0
research-article

Mass Optimization of a Supercritical CO2 Brayton Cycle Power Conversion System for a Mars Surface Fission Power Reactor

[+] Author and Article Information
Kurt E. Harris

Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering Utah State University Logan, UT
kuharris@gmail.com

Kevin J. Schillo

Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering University of Alabama in Huntsville Huntsville, AL 35899
kjs0011@uah.edu

Yayu M. Hew

Aeronautics and Astronautics Engineering Stanford University Stanford, CA 94305
ymhew@stanford.edu

Akansha Kumar

Center for Space Nuclear Research Idaho National Laboratory Idaho Falls, ID 83401
akansha.tamu@gmail.com

Steven D. Howe

Talos Power LLC Idaho Falls, ID 83402
showe@hbartech.com

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4035974 History: Received October 24, 2016; Revised February 06, 2017

Abstract

In NASA's Design Reference Architecture 5.0 (DRA 5.0), fission surface power systems (FSPS) are described as “enabling for the human exploration of Mars”. This study investigates the design of a power conversion system (PCS) based on supercritical CO2 (S-CO2) Brayton configurations for a growing Martian colony. Various configurations utilizing regeneration, intercooling, and reheating are analyzed. A model to estimate the mass of the PCS is developed and used to obtain a realistic mass-optimized configuration. This mass model is conservative, being based on simple concentric tube counterflow heat exchangers and published data regarding turbomachinery masses. For load following and redundancy purposes, the FSPS consists of three 333 kWe reactors and PCS to provide a total of 1MWe for 15 years. The optimal configuration is a S-CO2 Brayton cycle with 60% regeneration and two stages of intercooling. Analyses are mostly performed in MATLAB, with certain data provided by a COMSOL model of part of a low-enriched uranium (LEU) ceramic metallic (CERMET) reactor core.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.

References

Figures

Tables

Errata

Discussions

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In