Encyclopedia Astronautica
nuclear


Category of engines.

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Associated Engines
  • Nerva Alpha DoE nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 71.7 kN. Study 1972. The final Nerva Alpha flight engine reference configuration as documented at the end of its development. Isp=860s. More...
  • Nerva NTR DoE nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 333.4 kN. Study 1991. Late 1980's update of 1960's Nerva design. Isp=925s. More...
  • Nerva Gamma DoE nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 81 kN. Study 1972. Isp=975s. The final Nerva Gamma flight engine was an improved version of the Alpha, a small engine that could be launched together with its stage and a payload in a single space shuttle launch. More...
  • Nerva 2 DoE nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 867.4 kN. Developed 1950-74. Isp=825s. More...
  • NERVA 1mlbf Notional nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 8963 kN. DAC Helios, DAC Helios ISI studies 1963. Isp=850s. More...
  • Nerva DoE nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 266 kN. Study 1968. Early version of Nerva engine proposed for use in Saturn and RIFT configurations in 1961. Isp=800s. More...
  • Nerva 12 GW Notional nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. Study 1959. Used on Hyperion launch vehicle. More...
  • NPS-2 Rocketdyne nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. Nuclear Deep Space. Nuclear. Liquid hydrogen turbopumps, feed systems, and nozzles developed for KIWI-A, KIWI-B, Nerva, Pheobus IA, MFS-1, MFS-2, MFS-3, and Rover nuclear development systems. More...
  • Nuclear 12 Gw Notional nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 2892 kN. Helios A, Helios C study 1960. Nuclear second stage. Isp=830s. More...
  • Nuclear 14 Gw Notional nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 3334 kN. Study 1960. Nuclear second stage Isp=830s. Used on Helios B launch vehicle. More...
  • RD-0410 Kosberg nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 35.3 kN. Experimental nuclear engine, propellant LH2. Developed 1965-94. Isp=910s. Tested at Semipalatinsk test range in 1980s and was "the only operational nuclear engine in the USSR". First flight 1985. More...
  • RD-0411 Kosberg nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 392 kN. Full-size nuclear thermal engine. Design concept 1965-94. Planned full-size nuclear thermal engine for Mars expeditions. Never progressed beyond study stage. Isp=900s. More...
  • RD-410 Glushko nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 68 kN. UR-700M concept. Developed 1960s. More...
  • RD-600 Glushko nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 1960 kN. Isp=2000s. Gas core nuclear engine worked developed 1962-1970 for use in second stage of two-stage interplanetary rockets. More...
  • RN-6 Rocketdyne nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. Nuclear Deep Space. Nuclear. More...
  • RO-31 Kosberg nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 392 kN. UR-700 Third Stage. Study 1967. Engine proposed for UR-700 third stage to achieve 250 tonne payload to low earth orbit. Probably closely related to RD-0411. More...
  • Timberwind 250 DoE nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 2451.6 kN. Development ended 1992. Isp=1000s. Used on Timberwind launch vehicle. More...
  • Timberwind 45 DoE nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 441.3 kN. Development ended 1992. Isp=1000s. Used on Timberwind Centaur launch vehicle. More...
  • Timberwind 75 DoE nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 735.5 kN. Development ended 1992. Isp=1000s. Used on Timberwind Titan launch vehicle. More...
  • YaRD Type V Korolev nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 392 kN. Study 1963. Design considered in N1 nuclear upper stage studies. Outgrowth of work done by Bondaryuk and Glushko on YaRD engines for nuclear ICBM's, but using liquid hydrogen as propellant. Isp=900s. More...
  • YaRD Type V-B Korolev nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 392 kN. Study 1963. Isp=900s. Design considered in N1 nuclear upper stage studies. This version had 7,000 kg bioshield for manned missions. Used liquid hydrogen as propellant. More...
  • YaRD Type AF Korolev nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 196 kN. Study 1963. Design considered in N1 nuclear upper stage studies. Outgrowth of work done by Bondaryuk and Glushko on YaRD engines for nuclear ICBM's, but using liquid hydrogen as propellant. Isp=950s. More...
  • YaRD Type A Korolev nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 177 kN. Study 1963. Design considered in N1 nuclear upper stage studies. Outgrowth of work done by Bondaryuk and Glushko on YaRD engines for nuclear ICBM's, but using liquid hydrogen as propellant. Isp=900s. More...
  • YaRD OKB-670 Bondaryuk nuclear/ammonia+alcohol rocket engine. 1667 kN. Development ended 1960. Isp=470s. Proposed for YaRD nuclear-powered ICBM. Propellant was heated in the reactor and exhausted through four expansion nozzles. More...
  • YaRD OKB-456 Glushko nuclear/ammonia rocket engine. 1373 kN. Development ended 1960. Isp=470s. Used nuclear reactor in cylindrical housing, operating at 3000 deg K. Propellant heated in the reactor and exhausted through four expansion nozzles More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Superraket Russian nuclear orbital launch vehicle. The ancestor of the N1 lunar launch vehicle, this was the first heavy lift launch vehicle actively considered in the USSR. The 2,000 tonne liftoff mass was similar to the later N1 design, but the first stage would use a staggering cluster of around 66 Kuznetsov NK-9 engines (as opposed to the modest 24 NK-15's of the first N1 configuration). The real difference was in the second stage, which used the nuclear YaRD engine, giving the launch vehicle nearly double the later N1's payload capacity. More...
  • Nova C American nuclear orbital launch vehicle. General Dynamics Nova vehicle using Nova A as first two stages, nuclear spacecraft with jettisonable tanks as upper stage. More...
  • Nova D American nuclear orbital launch vehicle. General Dynamics Nova vehicle using Nova B as first two stages, nuclear spacecraft with jettisonable tanks as upper stage. More...
  • Saturn I RIFT American nuclear orbital launch vehicle. In the first half of the 1960's it was planned to make suborbital tests of nuclear propulsion for upper stages using a Saturn IB first stage to boost a Rover-reactor powered second stage on a suborbital trajectory. The second stage would impact the Atlantic Ocean down range from Cape Canaveral. More...
  • Saturn C-3BN American nuclear orbital launch vehicle. Version of Saturn C-3 considered with small nuclear thermal stage in place of S-IVB oxygen/hydrogen stage. More...
  • Saturn C-5N American nuclear orbital launch vehicle. Version of Saturn C-5 considered with small nuclear thermal stage in place of S-IVB oxygen/hydrogen stage. More...
  • N1 Nuclear A Russian nuclear orbital launch vehicle. A version of the N1 with a nuclear upper stage was studied by Korolev in 1963. It was concluded that the optimum design would allow a single N1 to launch a direct manned lunar landing and return. However for manned Mars missions, a nuclear electric engine was found to be much more efficient. This essentially killed further consideration of thermal nuclear upper stages within the bureau. More...
  • N1 Nuclear V-B Russian nuclear orbital launch vehicle. N1 with nuclear upper stage. This variant of the Type V nuclear engine used a very heavy radiation shield to protect the crew of any manned spacecraft payload. More...
  • N1 Nuclear AF Russian nuclear orbital launch vehicle. A variant of the first alternative considered in the 1963 nuclear N1 study. This was a 'high thrust' version of the Type A engine - apparently with higher propellant rate, lower specific impulse, and lower engine weight. Due to the very low density of the enormous liquid hydrogen upper stages, these immense vehicles would have been very ungainly (and had interesting stress problems during ascent!) More...
  • N1 Nuclear V Russian nuclear orbital launch vehicle. Second primary alternative considered for the 1963 nuclear N1 study. The immense liquid hydrogen tank of the second nuclear stage would have dwarfed the N1 first stage mounted below it in the shadows. The extremely poor thrust to weight ratio of the Type V engine design compared to that of the Type A remains unexplained. More...

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