Mars Rover MMRTG

Ensuring performance in extreme conditions

UDRI Advanced High-Temperature Materials researchers engage in the characterization, life prediction, and testing of ceramic and refractory materials. We can evaluate the strength, fracture, fatigue, creep, and thermophysical properties of materials in varying atmospheric environments and temperatures up to 1600 degrees Celsius.

Our current focus areas include studies of ceramics, metal, ceramic matrix composites, thermoelectric materials, carbon-carbon composites, optical ceramics, thermal barrier coatings, and optical coatings. The group is a nationally-known leader in the mechanical and thermophysical characterization of high-temperature ceramic materials.


  • Armor Materials
  • Biomechanics and Biomaterials
  • Chemical Compatibility and Radiation Effects on High-Temperature Materials
  • Ceramics and Glass Development and Processing
  • Ceramics Summary and Design Data Files (Compendium)
  • Digital Library of Ceramic Microstructure
  • High-Temperature Creep & Stress Rupture
  • High-Temperature Materials Characterization
  • Mechanical and Thermophysical Testing of Beryllium Oxide (BeO)
  • Subsurface Damage Characterization Laboratory (SDCL)
  • Thermal Analysis
  • Thermal Cycle Fatigue Testing of Coatings

Contact us today and let us help with your challenges in materials performance.

Contact Us: 937-229-2113  |  E-Mail  |  Form

Top: Working qualification units of the Mars Rover Curiosity’s Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG). Developed and maintained by UDRI's Advanced High-Temperature Materials researchers, the MMRTG converts heat created by naturally decaying plutonium radioisotopes into electricity to power the rover’s instruments, computers, wheels, robotic arm, and radio.

In the News

Mars Rover

A Step Toward Mars

A highly successful test of a prototype power generator at the University of Dayton Research Institute bodes well for NASA's plans to expand its exploration of Mars with the next rover mission.

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University of Dayton Research Institute

300 College Park 
Dayton, Ohio 45469 - 0101