Astronauts could soon benefit from electricity that could power their needs while they stay on the surface of the Moon!
NASA and the US Department of Energy (DOE) have announced they are in search of design concepts for a nuclear fission power plant that will be built on the Moon.
Fission is the process current nuclear power plants use.
Paired with solar cells, batteries and fuel cells, the proposed project is expected to power space exploration vehicles for experiments and technologies to produce water and other supplies, NASA said.
The selected system would provide at least 40kW of power, enough to continuously power 30 households for ten years.
The space agency said the technology could be ready to launch for a demonstration on the Moon within a decade.
Jim Reuter, Associate Administrator for NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, commented: “Plentiful energy will be key to future space exploration.
“I expect fission surface power systems to greatly benefit our plans for power architectures for the Moon and Mars and even drive innovation for uses here on Earth.”
Todd Tofil, Fission Surface Power Project Manager at NASA’s Glenn Research Center, said: “NASA and the DOE are collaborating on this important and challenging development that, once completed, will be an incredible step towards the long-term human exploration of the Moon and Mars.”