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Nuclear fuel for aircraft

  1. Aug 12, 2010 #1
    Investigate the potential for the use of a nuclear fuel source for aircraft propulsion: If anybody have related document and ideas please post it
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 12, 2010 #2

    russ_watters

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    Sounds like homework...
     
  4. Aug 13, 2010 #3

    mathman

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    About fifty years ago there was a major research program to develop a nuclear powered airplane. The problem of shielding was too big and the program eventually died.
     
  5. Aug 13, 2010 #4
    Are you referring to the program that eventually turned out the XB-70 Valkyrie?
     
  6. Aug 13, 2010 #5

    Astronuc

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  7. Aug 13, 2010 #6
    My understanding of the project was the nuclear engines were part of the WS-110A program. The point of the program was to make a long range, high endurance, high altitude and high speed bombers to penetrate USSR airspace. The nuclear engines were abandoned when high energy jet fuel (JP-6) was developed.
     
  8. Aug 14, 2010 #7

    Astronuc

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    Nuclear propulsion for aircraft and rockets was abandoned because more efficient chemical propuslion systems were developed, and the thermonuclear warheads were reduced in size and mass. Note that commercial nuclear power for ships was also abandoned, but the navy uses is for submarines and aircraft carriers because of the 'essentially' unlimited range.

    Some insight into the politics - http://www.megazone.org/ANP/politics.shtml
     
  9. Aug 16, 2010 #8

    QuantumPion

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    Actually Russia still has something like half a dozen nuclear-powered icebreakers.
     
  10. Aug 16, 2010 #9

    Astronuc

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    True, but they are Naval or Coast Guard I believe. I was referring to Civilian Maritime, rather than Naval vessels.

    Naval vessels are normally capable of defending themselves against highjacking. It's a security, safety and proliferation concern.
     
  11. Aug 16, 2010 #10

    mheslep

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    Is that a valid concern in your view, given the creation of a civilian maritime nuclear vessel?
     
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