Portable High Efficiency Power Source for Missile Technology

Period of Performance: 05/14/1999 - 11/13/1999


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Dynamic Structures & Materials, LLC
205 Williamson Square
Franklin, TN 37064
Principal Investigator


DSM is proposing the use of a novel high efficiency AMTEC (Alkali Metal Thermal to Electric Converter) as an increased efficiency power source for space missions and various ground applications. The AMTEC device is very flexible and adapts well to a variety of physical geometries. The proposed system can be easily adjusted and utilized in low earth orbit sensor satellite, or ground based assets. The size and configuration is similar to a battery. A proposed design is an energy converter with the following characteristics: efficiency of 20-40 percent, power to mass ratio greater than 0.5 kW/kg, no moving parts, low maintenance, high durability, efficiency independent of size, modular construction, and ability to use solar heat sources. AMTEC is compatible with many heat and fuel sources. AMTEC unit has high power density at 150 to 450 kilowatts/m3. Predicted cell power densities are near 80 watts per kilogram. AMTEC is environmentally friendly (no residue) and there is minimal risk of operational failure