We found this well researched and well written paper at http://world.std.com:80/~megazone/ANP/intro.html. The author was kind enough to allow us to include it on our site. We hope that you find it as informative as we did.

The Decay of the Atomic Powered Aircraft Program

Brian D. Bikowicz

©1993 Brian D. Bikowicz


Interest in atomic energy hit full force following World War II. The scientists who had raced to produce a bomb had also developed theories for a number of possible uses for the atom. Martin Mann lists a number of them in his book, Peacetime Uses of Atomic Energy. Ideas ranged from power generation, to nuclear excavation, to nuclear propulsion for vehicles on land, sea, and in the air. There were proposals for nuclear ships, nuclear locomotives, nuclear automobiles, and nuclear aircraft. It is this last proposal that is the topic for this paper, which will examine the technical and socio-political aspects of the United States Air Force's Aircraft Nuclear Propulsion (ANP) program and associated programs, including the reasons the ANP program was undertaken, and the reasons it was canceled after a decade of work.

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This paper is posted with the permission of Mr. Brian D. Bikowicz.