NASA Artemis Concept Awards Nuclear Power Moon
The NASA Artemis Concept Awards for nuclear power on the Moon have just been announced, and they include three design concept proposals. All of them conceptualize a fission surface power system design that could be ready to launch by the end of the decade for a demonstration on the Moon.



If successful, this technology could serve as a test bed for future exploration under the Artemis umbrella. The contracts will be awarded through the Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory and are each valued at approximately $5 million. They will fund the development of initial design concepts for a 40-kilowatt class fission power system planned to last at least 10 years in the lunar environment. These fission systems are extremely reliable and could enable continuous power regardless of location, available sunlight, and other natural environmental conditions. In related news, this is what a nuclear reactor looks like when it starts up.

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New technology drives our exploration of the Moon, Mars, and beyond. Developing these early designs will help us lay the groundwork for powering our long-term human presence on other worlds,” said Jim Reuter, associate administrator for NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate.