A summary of Office of Naval Research (ONR) on-going development of solar/fuel hybridization technologies that dramatically reduce fuel required for tactical Marine Corps operations. This video highlights the efforts of three key performers.
Video provided by the Office of Naval Research
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CERDEC tested a prototype handheld application that they hope will aid in managing power for forward operating bases, allowing the grid operator to monitor the fuel level of generator sets on a handheld device without having to be present. (Photo by Edric Thompson)
The U.S. Army demonstrated a proof of concept for a smart grid that could support tactical operations this summer at its integrated capabilities testbed at Fort Dix, N.J.
The U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command’s communications-electronics RD& E Center, or CERDEC, powered portions of a Tactical Operations Center and used the event to gather data and lessons learned that would help inform/support Department of Defense efforts to develop a solution that will reduce the number of generators needed, prevent overloads and grid collapse while reducing the number of generators needed, manpower requirements for grid operation and fuel consumption by 25 percent.
“The Army has traditionally addressed power generation through a collection of application-specific, stand-alone solutions. But no matter how good the individual technology, variations in loads lead to inefficiencies during operation. It’s nearly impossible to keep generators operating at peak efficiency when they are operating by themselves. That’s why the right solution is a mix of all technologies,” said Marnie DeJong, an electrical engineer with CERDEC’s Command, Power & Integration directorate.
Microgrid systems are currently the only solution that allows the incorporation of multiple technologies, such as renewables and energy storage systems, to supplement traditional power generation techniques, DeJong explained.
Sustainable energy seems to be the topic of conversation these days. The Office of Naval Research and the Naval Research Laboratory are testing zero-emission hydrogen fuel cells. That means vehicles can operate without emitting waste products that pollute the environment or disrupt the climate.
In this video, Dr. Karen Swider-Lyons, a Material Science Engineer at NRL, and other subject matter experts explain how hydrogen fuel cells work and why they are important to the U.S. Navy. Check out the NRL Chemistry Division, or for more NRL videos, click here.
Who knew algae-based fuel and fuel made from used cooking oil and non-food-grade animal fats could work together?
The U.S. Navy will employ such a biofuel blend to power aircraft and most vessels participating in a maritime exercise that’s slated to be conducted near Hawaii next summer, senior officials told reporters recently.
Navy Secretary Ray Mabus and U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack held a conference call with reporters to discuss a contract the Defense Logistics Agency announced last week for 450,000 gallons of biofuel that will power a Navy carrier group during a maritime exercise next summer.
U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist John Lill
The contract is the largest government purchase of biofuel in history, and provides $12 million to suppliers Solazyme and Dynamic Fuels LLC, a joint venture of Tyson Foods, Inc. and Syntroleum Corporation.
Solazyme’s biofuel is algae-based, Mabus explained, while Dynamic’s is made from used cooking oil and non-food-grade animal fats. (more…)
In preparation for the Navy’s largest demonstration of shipboard alternative fuel use, NAVSUP FLC San Diego fuel department personnel transferred about 20,000 gallons of a 50-50 blend of hydro-processed algae-derived algal oil and petroleum F-76 to SDTS, a decommissioned Spruance-class destroyer formerly known as Paul F. Foster (EDD 964).
Three tanker trucks transferred the fuel to SDTS over a six-hour period at the supply point’s Pier 180 aboard Naval Base Point Loma. Following the fueling operation, SDTS set sail for its 17-hour test transit back to Port Hueneme, Calif. (more…)
A sample of fungus that produces compounds similar to gasoline enclosed in a petri dish. DOD-funded researchers at Yale University are studying this fungus, found in Patagonia, as a cost-competitive source for the production of biofuels.
Daniel Spakowicz is a fourth-year student working towards a PhD in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry at Yale University. He is originally from Oshkosh, WI.
Current biofuels are very different from fossil-derived fuels. Their use requires the modification of our current engines and infrastructure, which can be very costly. In addition, current biofuels are made from food sources.
At Yale, we study a fungus that grows on dead trees and makes compounds similar to gasoline. If we could understand how this fungus is able to produce these compounds, then we may be able to scale it up to be a cost-competitive source of biofuel.
An October 4th, 2010, New York Times article, “U.S. Military Orders Less Dependence on Fossil Fuels,” described the DoD’s recognition of the vulnerability of long fuel supply convoys. What if the fuel was produced at a forward theatre? Imagine being able to make your own gasoline, wherever, from waste materials. Or, we could take the genes responsible for this production and put them into another organism, like algae, to make gasoline from sunlight.