"Kilopower could be a promising technology for lunar night operations and extended surface missions," Wittry said.
He explained that the Kilopower project was in a pre-formulation phase.
"Through a partnership with [US] Department of Energy, the project is establishing design requirements for embedded heat pipes, heat interface designs, and mission concept requirements for a future technology demonstration mission," he said.
Wittry added that in the pre-formulation phase, the developers are also evaluating concepts for a future flight demonstration.
"Such a demonstration could pave the way for future Kilopower systems that power human outposts on the Moon and Mars, including missions that rely on in-situ resource utilization to produce local propellants and other materials," he explained.
Kilopower is a lightweight fission nuclear power system capable of providing up to 10 kilowatts of electrical power - enough to run several average households - continuously for at least ten years. Kilopower units would provide enough power to establish an outpost on the moon or distant planets.