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A detailed discussion of magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) induction generators, and a mathematical model of a variable-velocity MHD generator. The linear MHD induction generator, which has no moving parts and can operate at very high temperatures and velocities, has been proposed for use in airborne and space power systems and for topping cycles in conventional power stations. It is almost identical to a linear induction motor or pump except for the longitudinal end effect problem and the fact that the rotor is a fluid. The model shows that a 30-Mw variable-velocity MHD generator of certain channel dimensions should have 80 percent net efficiency. MHD seems unsuited to central power stations but attractive for space, where high reliability during 5000- to 15,000-hour lifetimes justifies low efficiency. Impulse power in the multimegawatt range may also be a fruitful research area.

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