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Categories: Energy

Briefing Date:11/08/2001
Topic:Thermionics Quo Vadis? An Assessment of the DTRA's Advanced Thermionics Research and Development Program

THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES

National Research Council

Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences

Aeronautics and Space Engineering Board

*****

Congressional Briefings

November 8 - 9, 2001

273 Russell Senate Office Bldg.

and

2302 Rayburn House Office Bldg.

on

Thermionics Quo Vadis? An Assessment of the DTRA's Advanced Thermionics Research and Development Program

by

Tom Mahefkey, Consultant, Atlanta, Georgia and Chair, Committee on Thermionic Research and Technology, Aeronautics and Space Engineering Board, Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences, National Research Council

Thermionics -- the generation of energy from a heat source without the use of mechanical parts -- has been pursued since the 1960s as a promising source of power for spacecraft. Yet, despite the amount of research dedicated to its development, no thermionic system is in use today. This new report from the National Academies addresses the major technical challenges to the development of viable advanced thermionics systems and recommends R&D objectives to advance technology in this area in the United States.

This series of briefings was open to members of Congress and congressional staff only. The report was publicly released on November 12, 2001.

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