DOD Contracts News Release: No. 194-97 April 23, 1997


General Atomics, San Diego, Calif., is being awarded a
$5,401,936 cost plus fixed fee contract for the research,
development, test and evaluation of advanced in-core
thermionic technologies to support long duration space missions
for national security purposes. Focus is on the advancement of
thermionic performance rather than an overall system design
improvement since no specific mission has yet been identified on
which to base detailed system requirements. The objectives of
the Advanced Thermionic Program (ATP) are to advance the
state of the art of thermionic power conversion in the United
States, develop high performance and highly reliable thermionic
converters that provide high output power per unit of system
mass, demonstrate the capabilities of these thermionic
converters, show their feasibility for use in thermionic systems,
and develop corresponding system level conceptual designs.
Work will be performed in San Diego, Calif. (91%); and
Auburn, Ala. (9%), and is expected to be completed by August
14, 1999. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the
current fiscal year. There were 32 bids solicited on Oct. 18,
1996, and three bids were received. The contracting activity is
the Defense Special Weapons Agency, Alexandria, Va.