The applications derived from this technology will be numerous and far reaching. Below are just a few examples NEPEC could affect greatly.
An initial target market for the technology is the underwater unmanned vehicle (UUV). Today, 30% of the fleet is nuclear powered with larger scale reactors operating in the 100MW range; these reactor plants require large, loud cooling systems in order to operate – correspondingly large vessels to house them and their operators. However, as UUVs become more prevalent, smaller, quieter nuclear power systems will become more relevant to meet these vessels’ long-life, high-energy density needs. The NEPEC will be a natural fit to supplying this type of power.
Radioisotope batteries in the form of radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) have been the standard for power in space for over sixty years. However, with the dwindling supply of Pu-238 and the advent of privatized space flight, new technologies are needed. NEPEC's fuel derives from available isotopes in constant production by nuclear reactors. Not only is the fuel abundant, can also be chosen to either produce five times the power or last five times longer than Pu-238 depending on the mission's specific needs.
Radioisotope batteries can provide power for long durations in remote areas like the north or south pole and deep wilderness. This is important for oil drilling and logging sites that require power in the most remote places. Additionally, large quantities of radioisotopes are already used in nondestructive imaging of oil pipelines; making adoption of nuclear power supplies relatively easy.