radioisotope thermoelectric generator

(redirected from Radioisotope thermoelectric generators)

radioisotope thermoelectric generator

(ther-moh-i-lek -trik) (RTG) See thermoelectric generator.

radioisotope thermoelectric generator

[¦rād·ē·ō′ī·sə‚tōp ¦thər·mō·i′lek·trik ′jen·ə‚rād·ər]
(nucleonics)
A device for converting nuclear energy to electrical energy in which the heat produced by radioactivity of a radioisotope is used to produce a voltage in a thermocouple circuit; chief use has been in space vehicles and in instruments left on the lunar surface. Abbreviated RTG.
References in periodicals archive ?
Open Competition: A range of works on reception on board the ship, transportation, disassembly and premises for long term storage of radioisotope thermoelectric generators, decommissioning
There would also be the requirement of a reliable, steady supply of energy, so the use of radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) would be preferred.
In addition to DISR, the Titan IV/Centaur and the propulsion system, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company designed and built the three radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) that power spacecraft systems.
Included in NASA plans are the nuclear rocket to Mars; a new generation of Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTGs) for interplanetary missions; nuclear-powered robotic Mars rovers to be launched in 2003 and 2009; and the nuclear powered mission called Pluto-Kuiper Belt scheduled for January, 2006.
Since 1961, NASA has launched 25 spacecraft carrying radioisotope thermoelectric generators, devices that convert the heat produced by decaying plutonium into electricity.
If there is an accident then, the radioisotope thermoelectric generators containing the plutonium would probably fall into "the ocean waters .
If the Titan IV or Centaur, or both, explode over Africa and the radioisotope thermoelectric generators "impact rock surfaces," as NASA euphemistically puts it, the probe would probably release plutonium on the continent.
In addition to the propulsion system, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company designed and built the three radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) that power spacecraft systems and the Descent Imager/Spectral Radiometer (DISR) instrument on the Huygens probe.