Long duration hybrid power source for undersea operations

Period of Performance: 07/20/2016 - 01/16/2017


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Radiation Monitoring Devices, Inc.
44 Hunt Street Array
Watertown, MA 02472
Firm POC
Principal Investigator


We propose to develop a compact, hybrid, self-contained, quiet, and safe power source for the Shallow Water Surveillance System consisting of an integrated power source for rechargeable batteries, which will be kept fully charged or recharged with energy from a beta particle source. RMD is pioneering a new concept in betabatteries based on incorporating long life beta emitting isotopes directly into a high-brightness scintillator. Betabatteries provide an extremely high energy density, which can provide a long term stable and reliable source of power, without a need for either refueling or exposure to sun, wind, waves, or other environmental source. The proposed technology uses a self-irradiated scintillator and a photodiode which converts the light into electric power. In this effort we will develop CsI scintillator doped with radioactive thallium-204, which is a pure beta source with 3.7 years half-life. This technology will enable a compact, portable power supply station for recharging electronic devices. A system weighing less than 80 pounds would provide up to 10 watts for up to 3 years. It can also be used as an integrated hybrid lithium/betabattery device to increase the useful life of a rechargeable battery from a period of months to years.