MEGAHIT

Megawatt Highly Efficient Technologies for Space Power and Propulsion Systems for Long-duration Exploration Missions

 Coordinatore FONDATION EUROPEENNE DE LA SCIENCE 

 Organization address address: QUAI LEZAY MARNESIA 1
city: STRASBOURG CEDEX
postcode: 67080

contact info
Titolo: Mr.
Nome: David
Cognome: Weber
Email: send email
Telefono: +33 3 88 76 71 50
Fax: +33 3 88 76 71 80

 Nazionalità Coordinatore France [FR]
 Totale costo 565˙903 €
 EC contributo 495˙382 €
 Programma FP7-SPACE
Specific Programme "Cooperation": Space
 Code Call FP7-SPACE-2012-1
 Funding Scheme CSA-CA
 Anno di inizio 2013
 Periodo (anno-mese-giorno) 2013-03-01   -   2014-08-31

 Partecipanti

# participant  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    FONDATION EUROPEENNE DE LA SCIENCE

 Organization address address: QUAI LEZAY MARNESIA 1
city: STRASBOURG CEDEX
postcode: 67080

contact info
Titolo: Mr.
Nome: David
Cognome: Weber
Email: send email
Telefono: +33 3 88 76 71 50
Fax: +33 3 88 76 71 80

FR (STRASBOURG CEDEX) coordinator 117˙209.61
2    NATIONAL NUCLEAR LABORATORY LIMITED

 Organization address address: Daresbury Park - Daresbury 1100
city: WARRINGTON
postcode: WA4 4GB

contact info
Titolo: Dr.
Nome: Ozma
Cognome: Taylor
Email: send email
Telefono: +44 1925 289810
Fax: +44 1925 289988

UK (WARRINGTON) participant 87˙298.00
3    State Scientific Centre of Russian Federation-Federal State Unitary Enterprise Keldysh Research Center

 Organization address address: ONEZHSKAYA ULICA 8
city: MOSKVA
postcode: 125438

contact info
Titolo: Dr.
Nome: Alexander
Cognome: Semenkin
Email: send email
Telefono: +7 495 456 2063
Fax: +7 495 456 8228

RU (MOSKVA) participant 81˙320.00
4    DEUTSCHES ZENTRUM FUER LUFT - UND RAUMFAHRT EV

 Organization address address: Linder Hoehe
city: KOELN
postcode: 51147

contact info
Titolo: Mrs.
Nome: Ines
Cognome: Sander
Email: send email
Telefono: +49 421 244201169
Fax: +49 421 244201120

DE (KOELN) participant 79˙488.16
5    CENTRE NATIONAL D'ETUDES SPATIALES - CNES

 Organization address address: Place Maurice Quentin 2
city: PARIS
postcode: 75039

contact info
Titolo: Ms.
Nome: Nathalie
Cognome: Bernhard
Email: send email
Telefono: +33 5 61283359
Fax: +33 5 61273936

FR (PARIS) participant 67˙303.00
6    THALES ALENIA SPACE ITALIA SPA

 Organization address address: Via Saccomuro 24
city: ROMA
postcode: 131

contact info
Titolo: Mr.
Nome: Enrico
Cognome: Gaia
Email: send email
Telefono: +39 011 7180742
Fax: +39 011 7180228

IT (ROMA) participant 62˙764.06

Mappa


 Word cloud

Esplora la "nuvola delle parole (Word Cloud) per avere un'idea di massima del progetto.

russia    international    space    megahit    megawatt    mission    dipop    http    powered    roadmap    payload    power    technologies    back    solar    faster    exploration    had       nuclear    technological    electric    deep    inpps    sources    chemical    robotic    spacecraft    missions    propulsion    democritos    mars   

 Obiettivo del progetto (Objective)

'Space exploration is one of Europe’s priorities. Nuclear propulsion and power sources are “…essential and enabling key assets for a significant number of exploration missions…” (2005 European WG report on Nuclear Power Sources for Space) and can thus be considered as key technologies for deep-space exploration in Europe, Russia, and the USA. On the other hand, this technological development requires important financial efforts. Such a development should thus take place in the frame of an international collaboration as this has been the case, e.g. for the International Space Station. Among concepts that allow going to Mars are the very high power chemical propulsion or the nuclear propulsion. Megawatt level Nuclear-Electrical Propulsion is more interesting than chemical propulsion (higher payload ratio, cheaper in the long term, reduced launch mass and number of launchers, faster transit). Robotic science missions to the outer solar system could be used as test-beds and would benefit from this technology (faster missions or heavier payload), as well as surface power sources for In-Situ Resource Utilization and life support. The aim is to develop a European roadmap enabling such a program, taking advantage of each international partner's specific skills. The role of every partner will be based on its technical and economical capabilities, ambitions, interests and national policy. The objective is to set up an international network and adequate coordination means with future potential partners, leading to the establishment of a common roadmap involving all identified stakeholders, that will be driven by technological choices to suit long term objectives for space exploration. It will define common research objectives, draw-up research agenda and initiate research alliances. This project will help Europe invest in the research areas for which funding support will be particularly effective to ensure a key role for Europe in space exploration.'

Introduzione (Teaser)

Since the Treaty of Lisbon was signed in 2007, the EU has the mandate to coordinate space activities in Europe. As the EU works towards this goal, researchers investigated the development of nuclear electric in-space propulsion systems that can go beyond the capabilities of conventional spacecraft.

Descrizione progetto (Article)

Electric thrusters use electromagnetic radiation to heat up and ionise gas such as xenon or hydrogen. A magnetic nozzle directs the produced superheated plasma out the back, creating thrust. A nuclear electric spacecraft, with a nuclear core producing ~5-10MW of power, would be able to deliver either heavy cargo or astronauts to Mars orbit and back in a relatively short time and in a flexible way (trajectory wise).

Serious work on the concept of nuclear-powered spacecraft began in France and the United Kingdom in the 1980s. But, the former Soviet Union had launched multiple fission reactors between 1965 and 1987. The MEGAHIT (Megawatt Highly Efficient Technologies for Space Power and Propulsion Systems for Long-duration Exploration Missions) project had, therefore, as its second objective to create a European community including Russia to power a manned Mars mission and sample return from giant planets.

Building a roadmap for the development of such in-space propulsion systems was the first objective of the project MEGAHIT. A nuclear reactor as a power source is not a new concept in space, but Europe has not flown a nuclear-powered spacecraft to date.

The consortium formalised a technology plan for the development of such a nuclear-powered spacecraft. Together with the roadmap for low- and medium-power systems prepared within the project http://www.dipop.eu/ (DIPOP), MEGAHIT's International Nuclear Power and Propulsion System (INPPS) roadmap offers a pathway to advance Europe's current capabilities.

Potential collaboration opportunities with space-faring nations were explored. It is a long-range technology development activity, but part of Europe's mission architecture for deep-space exploration is to use nuclear powered spacecraft. Follow-on projects from the MEGAHIT project are expected to generate specific initiatives in robotic exploration of our solar system and human spaceflight.

The EU H2020 project http://www.h2020-democritos.eu (DEMOCRITOS) is following up on several of the highlighted technology demonstrators of the MEGAHIT INPPS technology roadmap.

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