Naval Power and Force Projection

Summer 2017

Military magazines in the United States and Canada, covering Armor and Mobility, focuses on tactical vehicles, C4ISR, Special Operations Forces, latest soldier equipment, shelters, and key DoD programs

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Page 26 of 35

Bogdanowicz: So, first of all, even though we're called NAVSUP Energy, what we really are is Navy petroleum. We are experts at the military specification fuels that are used by the warfighter. The way DoD looks at it, and the Navy as well, is to take this stuff and break it into two parts. There's the consumption side, operational energy, and then there is the supply side, energy. 'Operational' is once we're using energy, or actual petroleum manipu- lation in the supply chain. My focus is on the industrial base and getting the requirements to them, transporting it and storing it, and giving it to the warfighter. On the other side of the equation is, how are we using it? There are ways to economize and ways to change usage. One of the primary areas addressed by the Great Green Fleet was in coming up with new opera- tions procedures. For example, when you launch aircraft from a carrier, there is a certain sequence in which aircraft launch, what they do once they get airborne, when they decide to do aerial refueling, and when they bring them back. The Navy took a hard look at it and said, I think there are some different ways we could do this and still meet the mission using less fuel. Another example is on ships that have two jet turbine engines, such as the L2500 class. They can burn either diesel or jet fuel. Since jet engines like to spin at steady revolutions per minute (RPMs), unlike a diesel engine which operates at variable rates, the way we control how fast the ship goes through the water is by leaving jet engine propulsion operating at a steady rate, and then just change the pitch on the propel- ler. A greater pitch means you push more water, and hence go faster. If you want less power, you can shut down an engine or just trail a propeller to conserve energy. The culture the Navy has been trying to address is in incentivizing commanding officers at the operational level to find the right balance between operational risk and readiness on the one hand, and efficiency and conservation on the other hand. And so, that's sort of this cultural evolution that we've been going through. The Great Green Fleet was an attempt to accelerate that. DoD P&E: What are some alternative propulsion methods the Navy is looking to implement to power ships with energy conservation in mind? Bogdanowicz: The Navy is looking at diesel-electric engines. We're building ships that essentially have diesel generators that are making electric power, and then we use electric power to drive the ship. That's actually a level of efficiency greater than what we have now with jet engine propulsion. The other benefit of diesel-electric capability is in the development of electromagnetic weapons that require huge amounts of power. If you don't have a diesel-electric driven ship, you need lots of genera- tors to produce the power to operate weapons systems, so we sort of duel-purposed these generators for their ship propulsion and weapons systems energy availability. The amounts of energy that diesel-electric driven ships are using is a magnitude above anything we would have on a non-diesel-electric ship, in terms of electrical power. In terms of powering weapons systems on diesel-electric ships, electricity is stored in gigantic capacitors. It takes some time, minutes or seconds, to charge these capacitors for powering a weapons discharge. It's essentially the difference in say a hundred dollars for a shell from an electric capacitor versus ten thousand dollars for a shell with all the necessary gunpowder from a ship without electric capacitors. It's a pretty cool transformational thing for the Navy not having to worry about the expense of ammunition magazines with all the fire suppression equipment that has to accompany the use of gun powder. Not to mention the expense of keeping a gun system operational. Elec- tric-operated weapons systems will be cheaper to operate and cheaper to support logistically, with ranges at least an order of magnitude greater, so, you're getting a lot more military effectiveness. With greater range for ship-launched weaponry to enemy positions, fewer aircraft will be needed to destroy positions that ships can now reach, saving lives and fuel associated with aviation engagement. DoD P&E: Feel free to speak to any other objectives you'd like to mention. Bogdanowicz: We regularly review our posture in terms of where our energy is stored. Our store fuel is for peak-time operating use in ships and aircraft, for normal peace-time missions. We also have fuel that we store for war-reserve, to be able to support our combat engagement plan. There's been a general awareness that we've got some work to do on what we store and where, particularly in the Pacific Command (PACOM) area of operations (AOR). As such, we are taking a deliberate long-term look at our storage strategies, and looking to diversify where we keep our fuel. We have a pre-positioned fleet full of all the war-reserve materials that we think we're going to need, so we're looking at what kinds of afloat capabilities do we want to have. The Navy's assessment has been that what we have is going to be adequate to meet our needs and, as the threat profile changes, we need to be ready to adjust our strategy to address emerging threats. SEPTEMBER 12-13, 2017 C O B O C E N T E R , D E T R O I T , M I REGISTER EARLY AND SAVE US/CANADA BORDER CONFERENCE: BORDER OF THE FUTURE Visit for information on attending and sponsorships MEETING FLEET DEMAND MAXIMIZING FUEL EXPEDIENCE NP&FP and DoD P&E | Summer 2017 | 25

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