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Aircraft Nuclear Propulsion Project

This report outlines the practicality and potentialities of the circulating fuel aircraft reactor (Part I) and then describes in detail the Aircraft Reactor Experiment (Part II)-with which pertinent and reliable data can most economically be obtained to permit the design, development, and construction of the actual aircraft reactor
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ORNL nb36h-cockpit ANR
Courtesy of ORNL
ORNL Aircraft Nuclear Power Plant Design

This report tries to provide a critical evaluation of the more promising reactors on the basis of a common, reasonable set of design conditions and assumptions.
The types of propulsion system that might be used are discussed. Aircraft performance considerations are presented on the basis of a representative power plant, and the shield data used are validated in a section on shielding.
The effects of nuclear considerations on the size, shape, and composition of the reactor core are presented, and in the light of the preceding presentation, possible combinations of materials and the limitations on the materials are discussed.
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Operation of the Aircraft Reactor Experiment

This report summarizes the ARE experience and is concerned primarily with the nuclear operation of the reactor.
The experiment is described, and the data obtained during the time from the start of the critical experiment until the reactor was shut down are analyzed.
The material is presented in essentially chronological order, and frequent reference is made to appended material which includes important detailed data and information.
The operation of the Aircraft Reactor Experiment (ARE) culminated four years of endeavor at ORNL in the field of nuclear propulsion of aircraft.
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Mechanix Illustrated Issue: Aug, 1955
Courtesy of Mechanix Illustrated
Issue: Aug, 1955

Zero Power Reactor Experiment at Elevated Temperature

An experiment using a full-scale mockup of the core and reflector of Pratt and Whitney Aircraft Reactor No.1 (PWAR-1), a reflector-moderated reactor, was performed at zero power and elevated temperatures in the ORNL Critical Experiments Facility.
This report presents the experimental measurements, and includes a discussion of the important engineering design features and construction problems.
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