Nuclear Engine

Aerojet Rocketdyne offers unique expertise to benefit the nuclear industry, providing more than 70 years of experience designing and producing highly reliable, high-performance systems that operate in extreme environments.

  • System Engineering & Integration
  • Probabilistic Risk Assessment (PRA I-III)
  • External Events and Common Cause Failure Analysis
  • Reliability, Availability and Maintainability
  • Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA)
  • System Safety and Hazard Analysis
  • Software Safety Analysis
  • Failure Detection, Isolation and Recovery (FDIR)
  • Failure Investigation and Root Cause Analysis (RCA)
  • Advanced Hydrogen Mitigation Technology

Program Milestones

More than 50 years of space nuclear, terrestrial and liquid metal reactor heritage technologies


2004 – present  -  Multi Mission Radioisotope (MMRTG)

2004 - Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter (JIMO)

1980s - 1990s -  Dynamic Isotope Power Systems (DIPS)

1980s - 1990s  - SP-100

1950s - 1960s - SNAP Reactor Assembly


1970s - 1980s - Thermal Hydrogen Recombiner

1984 – 1988 - Sodium Advanced Fast Reactor (SAFR)

1972 – 1982 - Clinch River Breeder Reactor (CRBR)

1970s - 1980s - Fast Flux Test Facility

1962 - Hallan Power Plant

1957 - Sodium Reactor Experiments

Aerojet Rocketdyne is powering the Mars Curiosity rover around the surface of the red planet with an in-space, nuclear powered battery called the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator, or MMRTG. It’s a uniquely capable source of power that converts heat into electricity, providing continuous electrical power that allows day and night operation. The MMRTG has a design life of 14 years, and is built to operate in a range of harsh environments – from the vacuum of deep space to extreme planetary surface atmospheres, like Mars.