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|Title:||PROGRESS ON 241Am PRODUCTION FOR USE IN RADIOISOTOPE POWER SYSTEMS|
|Authors:||BAKER S.r.; BELL K.j.; BROWN J.; CARRIGAN C; CARROTT Michael; GREGSON C; CLOUGH M; MAHER C.j.; MASON C; RHODES C.j.; RICE T.g.; SARSFIELD Mark; STEPHENSON K; TAYLOR R.j.; TINSLEY T.p.; WOODHEAD D.a; WISS Thierry|
|Citation:||SP-719 - 10TH EUROPEAN SPACE POWER CONFERENCE CD-ROM PROCEEDINGS|
|Publisher:||European Space Agency|
|Type:||Articles in periodicals and books|
|Abstract:||Electrical power sources used in outer planet missions are a key enabling technology for data acquisition and communications. Power sources generate electricity from the thermal energy from alpha decay of the radioisotope 238Pu via thermo-electric conversion. Production of 238Pu requires specialist facilities including a nuclear reactor and reprocessing plants that are expensive to build and operate, so naturally, a more economical alternative is attractive to the industry. Within Europe 241Am is a feasible alternative to 238Pu that can provide a heat source for radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) and radioisotope heating units (RHUs). As a daughter product of 241Pu decay, 241Am is present at 1000s kg levels within the UK civil plutonium stockpile. A chemical separation process is required to extract the 241Am in a pure form and this paper describes such a process, successfully developed to the proof of concept stage.|
|JRC Directorate:||Nuclear Safety and Security|
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