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NASA issues nuclear thermal propulsion study contracts
Posted: Fri, Jul 16, 2021, 7:16 PM ET (2316 GMT)
NASA awarded three contracts Tuesday to begin concept studies of nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP) systems. The contracts, each worth $5 million, went to teams led by BWX Technologies, General Atomics and Ultra Safe Nuclear Technologies. The yearlong studies will refine concepts for nuclear reactors that would be part of NTP systems, which promise much higher efficiencies and shorter travel times than conventional chemical propulsion systems. NASA says it's cooperating on NTP technology development with DARPA, which has its own NTP technology program.
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