Speculative Technological Convergence – Nuclear power for Ten Thousand Exoskeletons

Previously this site speculated on near term technology that would enable a powerful version of the science fiction Bolo supertank.

Now the converged projection is that technology will soon enable effective exoskeletons with compact electric engines, mass-produced portable nuclear reactors, UAVs with electric engines, higher electrical density and longer lasting ultracapacitor/battery combinations.

Hyperion Power Generation plans to sell and build the four thousand 27-30MWe reactors over the first ten year period or less. [2013-2022] Each reactor should weight 15-20 tons and cost about $25 million.

The highest power to weight ratio electric engines could be used to power the Sarcos exoskeleton.

The person wearing the exoskeleton can carry 100-200kg without tiring so having 60kg of weight for an electric engine, ultracapacitors and batteries would work to power the exoskeleton. The Pipestrel motorized glider has 46kg of lithium batteries that store 6kwh of power. The AK30K016 electric motor, which weighs 14 kg, generates 30kw (40HP), 1800 RPM, 200Nm at 95% efficiency. The Hyperion Power Generation reactor could use 15-20% of its power to supply the power for ten thousand exoskeletons. A fleet of robotically flown electric UAVs could deliver charged power-packs of batteries/ultracapacitors to the exoskeletons.

Long lasting ultrabatteries should be commercially available in 2011

The fleet of UAVs can also provide air support and airspace control for the exoskeleton troops.

Beamed power and wireless energy transfer alternative to UAV supply chain
Wireless energy transfer has been demonstrated by Intel at 75% efficiency over short distances.

A recent experiment beamed power over 92 miles.