There is no person who can’t feel a swell of pride and awe as they watch gigantic naval ships leave the dock with weaponry bristling and crews waving to those they’re leaving behind. The United States Navy has played so many important roles throughout the history of this country and will continue to play so many more that those in charge of the military have decided to start going green in an attempt to cut fuel costs, increase rapid response deployment capabilities, and help save the environment while they’re at it. The Navy just announced the commission of a new amphibious assault ship, the USS America and while the ship is devastatingly (literally) impressive, one of the most impressive facts is that it’s the second US Navy ship to be powered by a hybrid electric drive. While it might not seem like all that much, saving fuel and increasing efficiency is one of the most aspects of military development and this new ship is showing that the Navy is taking future fuel issues seriously and planning ahead.
Fuel and energy is always one of the leak points in any countries military plans; logistics always are. There have been countless examples throughout history of giant armies faltering and failing due to poor logistics and an insufficient amount of fuel (either petroleum based or other). As weapons, technology, and armor increases, so to does the amount of fuel and energy needed to keep everything running in perfect condition and at complete readiness. With fuel convoys and refueling missions being some of the most dangerous and costly, in terms of both money and lives, these new hybrid engines will help to cut down on the need to put so many of our men and women in harms way. Along with these new ship engines, the military is also starting to use solar panels to both help charge generators on base as well as to charge electronics in the field (these panels go on uniforms). It seems as though we’re moving away from relying on fuel for out military and that can only mean it will be quicker and more efficient in the future.
If you’d like to read more, the link is here.