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Leonard M. Maki Nuclear Power Collection, 1958 - circa 1990s

By Finding aid prepared by Chris Petersen and Rachel Lilley.

Collection Overview

Title: Leonard M. Maki Nuclear Power Collection, 1958 - circa 1990s

Predominant Dates: 1960-1975

ID: MSS Maki

Primary Creator: Maki, L. M. (Leonard M.)

Extent: 0.8 cubic feet. More info below.

Arrangement: The archival materials in the collection have been arranged into five series: Series 1. Publications and Typescripts, 1958-1990; Series 2. Photographs and Artists’ Concepts, 1960-1967; Series 3. Reports, 1961, 1963; Series 4. Atomics International records, 1963; and Series 5. Artifacts, undated.

Date Acquired: 00/00/2006

Languages of Materials: English [eng]

Abstract

The Leonard M. Maki Nuclear Power Collection consists of materials related to the development of nuclear power systems in the twentieth century. Maki taught Nuclear Engineering courses at Oregon State University after his retirement from Rockwell International in 1987. Of particular note is a collection of records detailing ideas and prototypes for nuclear power systems designed to operate in outer space.

Scope and Content Notes

The Maki Collection consists of materials related to the development of nuclear power systems in the twentieth century.

The archival materials in this collection include publications and typescripts, photographs and artists’ concepts, reports, Atomics International records, and artifacts. The majority of these materials document several projects initiated by Atomics International to create nuclear power systems for use in outer space and at the ocean floor.

Series 1, Publications and Typescripts, includes scientific publications and offprints, and typescripts of seminars presented by Maki in the 1990s. Subjects addressed in the publications include aerospace nuclear power systems and safety, the application of nuclear space power in marine environments, and the analysis of various types of nuclear reactors.

The second series, Photographs and Artists’ Concepts, include photographs, and artists’ renderings of SNAP systems (Systems for Nuclear, Auxiliary Power), including SNAP-2, SNAP-8, SNAP-10, and SNAP-10A. Odd-numbered SNAPs were powered by radioisotope thermoelectric generators; even-numbered SNAPs were powered by compact nuclear reactors. Of special note in this series is a photograph of Leonard Maki, circa 1960s (Box 2, Folder 10).

Series 3, Reports, is comprised of a development plan for the SNAP-8 reactor that charts the program’s progress from its beginning in FY 1961, to expected delivery in FY 1966. Also included in this series is a report detailing the expected results for tests on parts of the 5 Kwe reactor.

The fourth series, Atomics International Records, includes two telephone directories, an organizational chart for the Compact Systems division of Atomics International, a costs list for the Space Electric Program, and charts that document Atomics International’s space power experience.

Series 5, Artifacts, is comprised of five artifacts contemporary to Leonard Maki's work as a nuclear engineer, including a piece of graphite similar to what would have been used in early nuclear reactors; a zirconium hydride rod and beryllium bolts similar to what would have been used in the SNAP reactors; an AECL Technologies (Atomic Energy of Canada Limited) paperweight; a Dietzgen “Trig-Easy” trigonometrical chart; and a slide rule in a hand-tooled, leather holster.

Biographical / Historical Notes

Leonard M. Maki was born June 21, 1929. He received a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Physics from the University of California, Berkeley in 1957, and a Master of Science in Nuclear Engineering from Berkeley in 1958.

A member of the American Nuclear Society, Leonard M. Maki spent over 28 years working as a nuclear engineer at Rockwell International (formerly Atomics International). While at Rockwell, his areas of expertise included nuclear waste repository design, decontamination and decommissioning, remote handling, waste management, safety analysis, instrumentation and control, criticality and shielding analysis, structural analysis and thermal analysis. More specifically, Maki served as the Program Development Manager responsible for marketing activities on the Sodium Advanced Fast Reactor (SAFR), and provided marketing support to Rocketdyne’s involvement in nuclear space power activities. He was the group leader responsible for design engineering on the SNAP-8 program, and subsequently was the Assistant Project Manager of SNAP Reactor Programs, a program directed toward the design, development, and fabrication of a 5-kWe reactor-thermoelectric power system for unmanned space missions. He also served as Assistant Manager of the ZrH Reactor Technology Programs, where he provide technical, administrative, and budgetary direction for ZrH reactor technology and aerospace nuclear safety.

Maki retired from Rockwell in 1987, and has taught courses on nuclear engineering at Oregon State University as well as several universities in southern California.



Author: Chris Petersen and Rachel Lilley

Administrative Information

More Extent Information: 3 boxes; 46 photographs

Statement on Access: The collection is open for research.

Acquisition Note: Accessioned from Leonard Maki in February 2006.

Separated Materials: The books originally donated as part of the collection have been separated, catalogued, and are now part of Special Collections and Archives Research Center Atomic rare books collection.

Related Materials:

Other collections documenting nuclear physics, nuclear energy, and nuclear reactor design include the Eugene Starr Papers, the Theodore Rockwell Papers, and the Nuclear Science Technical Reports.

Books on nuclear power, nuclear power systems in space, marine applications of nuclear energy, and reactor design can be found in SCARC's History of Atomic Energy rare book collection. SCARC's Nuclear History LibGuide provides information about a variety of resources pertaining to nuclear and atomic history.

Preferred Citation: Leonard M. Maki Nuclear Power Collection (MSS Maki), Oregon State University Special Collections and Archives Research Center, Corvallis, Oregon.

Processing Information: Initial arrangement by Chris Petersen. Revised arrangement by Rachel Lilley.

Finding Aid Revision History: Finding aid appended and revised in February 2018.

Creators

Maki, L. M. (Leonard M.)
Rockwell International. Atomics International Division.

People, Places, and Topics

American Nuclear Society
History of Science
Maki, L. M. (Leonard M.)
Nuclear reactors--Shielding (Radiation)
Nuclear reactors--United States--Safety measures.
Project SNAP.
Rockwell International. Atomics International Division.
Submerged nuclear power plants

Forms of Material

Information artifacts.
Photographic prints.


Box and Folder Listing

Series 1: Publications and Typescripts, 1958-1990
This series includes scientific publications and offprints, and typescripts of seminars presented by Maki in the 1990s. Subjects addressed in the publications include aerospace nuclear power systems and safety, the application of nuclear space power to marine environments, and the analysis of various types of nuclear reactors.
Box-Folder 1.1: J. G. Asquith and Leonard Maki, "Design of the FFTF Fuel Storage Facility (FSF)", circa 1977
Box-Folder 1.2: Atomics International, Hallam Nuclear Power Facility, 1963
Box-Folder 1.3: Atomics International, New Career Horizons with Atomics International, circa 1961
Box-Folder 1.4: Robert L. Detterman, "Aerospace Nuclear Safety", January 30, 1968
Box-Folder 1.5: H. M. Dieckamp, Nuclear Space Power System, 1967
Box-Folder 1.6: D. J. Gylfe, Reactor Space Power Systems, 1968
Box-Folder 1.7: R. A. Johnson and Leonard Maki, "Adaptation of Nuclear Space Power Plants to Marine Applications", August 13, 1967
Box-Folder 1.8: Henry Lurie and Leonard Maki, "Fluidized Bed Reactor Concept for a Gas Turbine Power Plant", May 27, 1958
Box-Folder 1.9: Leonard Maki and H. R. Brager, "Operating Capabilities and Growth Potential of the SNAP 8 Reactor", June 24, 1965
Box-Folder 1.10: Leonard Maki and E. J. Donovan, "The Reference ZrH Reactor", June 18, 1969
Box-Folder 1.11: J. F. O'Brien, Proceedings of the ANPP Reactor Analysis Seminar, October 11-12, 1960
Box-Folder 1.12: R. D. Oldenkamp, E. Guenther and S. Golan, "The Sodium Advanced Fast Reactor", circa 1989
Box-Folder 1.13: R. D. Oldenkamp, E. Guenther, J. E. Brunings and R. Hren, "Update - Sodium Advanced Fast Reactor (SAFR) Concept", circa 1990
Box-Folder 2.1: T.H. Pigford and L.D. Posey, Course book: NE 250A, Nuclear Reactor Theory, 1959
Box-Folder 2.2: Rockwell International, "Reference Advanced Liquid Metal Reactor (LMR) Program - Executive Summary", April 4, 1988
Box-Folder 2.3: Rockwell International, Space Exploration Initiative, 1990
Box-Folder 2.4: Leonard Maki, "The Glory Days of the US Reactor Space Power Program, 1956 to 1973" [seminar typescript], circa 1990s
Box-Folder 2.5: Leonard Maki, "SNAP Development Challenges" [seminar typescript], circa 1990s
Series 2: Photographs and Artists’ Concepts, 1960-1967
The Photographs and Artists’ Concepts series includes real world photographs, and artists’ renderings of SNAP systems (Systems for Nuclear, Auxiliary Power), including SNAP-2, SNAP-8, SNAP-10, and SNAP-10A. Odd-numbered SNAPs were powered by radioisotope thermoelectric generators; even-numbered SNAPs were powered by compact nuclear reactors. Also included in this series is a photograph of Leonard Maki, circa 1960s (Box 2, Folder 10).
Box-Folder 2.6: The SNAP-10A Reactor Space Power System, 1962, 1964-1965
Images include an artist's concept of the SNAP-10A System, photographs of the SNAP-10A radiator structure and system mock-up, documentation of the testing, transport and launch of the system, and an artist's concept of the SNAP-10A in orbit (10 images).
Box-Folder 2.7: Underwater Applications of Space Nuclear Power Plants, 1963-1964
Conceptual design studies were performed to evaluate the feasibility of using nuclear space power plants for underwater applications. These studies concluded that design changes would be required, but the resulting configurations could be quite attractive for a variety of missions. Images include an artist's concept of an HMBR Reactor, a photograph of a SNAP-8 reactor mockup undergoing shock and vibration testing, and a "Buzz Sawyer" comic strip that incorporates an exact copy of the SNAP-8 reactor in its three-panel narrative of the installation of a nuclear power plant at an underwater laboratory (3 images).
Box-Folder 2.8: The SNAP-8 Developmental Reactor, 1963
The SNAP-8 was a complete prototype reactor system that was operated in a large underground vacuum chamber to simulate space operation. Images include photographs and artistic depictions of the apparatus, including its ground test assembly and fuel loading (6 images).
Box-Folder 2.9: The SNAP-2 Reactor Space Power System, 1964-1965
The SNAP-2 was an upgraded version of the SNAP-10A designed to operate a small mercury Rankine power plant. Images include photographs of the SNAP-2 reactor and control components, the assembled reactor and control system, a schematic diagram of the developmental reactor test, and an artistic depiction of the mercury Rankine power plant (6 images).
Box-Folder 2.10: An Advanced Zirconium Hydride Reactor, circa late 1960s
The Advanced ZrH Reactor was a higher powered, longer lived space power reactor on which work was initiated in the late 1960s. The program was terminated before an actual reactor was built. Images include a photograph of Leonard Maki posing with a model of the Advanced ZrH Reactor as well as an artist's conception of the reference design for the reactor (2 images).
Box-Folder 2.11: Nuclear Reactor Space Power Missions, circa 1960s
The SNAP reactor space power plants were proposed for a wide range of missions. This folder includes artists conceptions of several of these proposed missions including the powering of large orbiting space stations and lunar modules, communications satellites, laser beam weapons, underwater structures and mobile units for military use (16 images).
Box-Folder 2.12: Assorted SNAP images, 1962-1967
Images include photographs of a compact lead-telluride thermoelectric generator designed for space reactor applications, an irradiation test assembly, the induction heating of a SNAP-8 fuel element and an artist's conception of a nuclear-powered satellite (4 images).
Series 3: Reports, 1961-1973
This series is comprised of a development plan for the SNAP-8 reactor that charts the program’s progress from its beginning in FY 1961, to expected delivery in FY 1966. Also included in this series is a report detailing the expected results for tests on parts of the 5 Kwe reactor.
Box-Folder 2.13: "SNAP 8 Development Plan", September 18, 1961
Box-Folder 2.14: "5 Kwe Reactor Test Program", circa 1973
Data set, which may have been compiled by Atomics International, includes descriptions of various tests conducted as part of the program, including the conditions, purpose and expected results specific to a given test.
Series 4: Atomics International Records, 1963
Series 4 includes two telephone directories, an organizational chart for the Compact Systems division of Atomics International, a costs list for the Space Electric Program, and charts that document Atomics International’s space power experience.
Box-Folder 2.15: Records, 1963
Series 5: Artifacts, undated
The Artifacts series is comprised of five artifacts contemporary to Leonard Maki's work as a nuclear engineer, including a piece of graphite similar to what would have been used in early nuclear reactors; a zirconium hydride rod and beryllium bolts similar to what would have been used in the SNAP reactors; an AECL Technologies (Atomic Energy of Canada Limited) paperweight; a Dietzgen “Trig-Easy” trigonometrical chart; and a slide rule in a hand-tooled, leather holster.
Box-Folder 3.1: Reactor materials: Graphite, Zirconium Hydride rod and Beryllium bolts, undated
Box-Folder 3.2: AECL Technologies paper weight, undated
Box-Folder 3.3: Slide rule and trigonometrical chart, undated

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