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Portable electrical power sources are being used in increasing numbers for a variety of applications on the ground and in outer space. The trend to miniaturization and transistorization has accelerated this practice. Chemical, nuclear, and solar energy are the three prime sources that are being used in power sources which will fulfill the new requirements. Each of these sources, in combination with new electrical conversion devices, has advantageous and unique characteristics which make it desirable for this application. The characteristics of various types of recently developed electrical power sources are described and compared, and data are presented which illustrate the best operating conditions for each system.