- Conference date: 12−16 Jan 1992
- Location: Abuquerque, New Mexico (USA)
Clustering of rocket engines refers to the parallel connection of two or more small engines so that the performance of the propulsion system is superior to that of a single large engine. A general review of the technical merits of nuclear thermal rocket clustering is presented. A summary of previous analyses performed during the Rover program is presented and is used to assess clustering in the context of projected Space Exploration Initiative missions. A number of technical issues are discussed including cluster reliability, engine‐out operation, neutronic coupling, shutdown core power generation, shutdown reactivity requirements, reactor kinetics, and radiation shielding.
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