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New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 10:07 AM

Well it isn't entirely new, but it is the first highly energetic and powerful source that is readily replenished in the field. It utilizes a special nano-dispersion in aluminum powder, and when combined with urine (can be any water, but urine kinetically is twice as fast in production), it released high flow rates of pure hydrogen.

The hydrogen is admitted to a fuel cell, and thus is capable of powering forward communications, and other electronic equipment the soldier may carry with him/her on the front lines. The products of fuel are electricity, heat and water. The heat may be useful when deployment is in a colder climate, not sure about hot deserts.

Here is a short video:

One of the researchers made a statement that really bothers me, however.

"The reaction produces up to 220 kilowatts in 3 minutes." What is that supposed to mean? Just what he said? Taken literally we are talking about 220 kW power level reached in 3 minutes!!! Surely that would melt any container for the reaction, therefore, he surely meant the energy released is equivalent to to 220 kWh (from a suitably selected size reaction container), released within the three minute reaction time. Are we talking about rocket fuel here? This does not make sense to me either way.

Obviously, field hydration of the soldier is of paramount importance, along with having electrical power. I suppose they will provide means of condensing the water from the fuel cell?

My question is short of a large robotic hybrid shell the soldier wears, what in heck would he/she possibly need in the field at that power level/soldier?

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#1

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 10:35 AM

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 11:44 AM

Sweeeet!!!

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#3

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 12:56 PM

In answer to your last question, one of the biggest problems with mobile units (typically company-sized elements) is their need for multiple mobile power sources 40-60kw to power the many networked communications and tactical devices currently employed. High-powered radios, satellite equipment to do electronic mapping and overlays, BFT's (Battlefield Trackers - icons for all surrounding units in your AO), etc.

Historical generators had two main drawbacks... noise (new design are much more quite then their predecessors but still an issue) and a fuel supply chain. Fuel convoys are top-level high-end targets; anything you can do to minimize the fuel supply chain to forward units is a win-win.

For the modern Soldier, there are significant power requirements when traveling in a platoon and larger-sized element so even though I concur that 220kW is likely a misrepresentation (intentional or not) this is exciting.

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#4
In reply to #3

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 2:16 PM

They better get to drinking that coffee!!!

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#11
In reply to #4

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 5:19 PM

..or, BEER.

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#12
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Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 9:50 PM

..or, AAR.

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#14
In reply to #12

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/29/2017 8:46 AM

What is this AAR? Are we talking rum? A deadman's chest?

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#23
In reply to #14

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/30/2017 12:41 AM

Ok, ok, ok,

You started it by replying to JavaHead with "They better get to drinking that coffee", obviously in reference to his forum name. Then, 70AARCuda replied with ..or, BEER, and he apparently did not get the reference. Therefore, I replied to him with ..or, AAR, a reference to his forum name and avatar.

Was your "They better get to drinking that coffee" NOT in reference to JavaHead's forum name?

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#26
In reply to #23

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

10/02/2017 8:49 AM

I think I was referring to the need for more power in a platoon or larger sized unit, and something in the range north of 200 kW. - - More coffee = more urine = more hydrogen = more power. The new "Binford 5007" meets all this requirements in a compact unit, with the excess heat available for brewing the next round of coffee - Yiuck!

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#28
In reply to #23

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

10/03/2017 3:15 PM

Haha, and I thought you meant After Action Review which is part of the Army Continuous Improvement Process after training events... or after we get drunk and do stupid things.

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#29
In reply to #28

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

10/03/2017 3:22 PM

Doing stupid things, boyo, whilst drunk is far preferred over doing them stone cold sober.

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#5
In reply to #3

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 2:31 PM

That's from a kilo of nano aluminum powder....

..."If aluminium could be made to effectively react with water, it would mean hydrogen on demand. Unlike hydrogen, aluminium and water are easy to carry – and both are stable. But previous attempts to drive the reaction required high temperatures or catalysts, and were slow: obtaining the hydrogen took hours and was around 50 per cent efficient.

The new alloy, which the team is in the process of patenting, is made of a dense powder of micron-scale grains of aluminum and one or more other metals arranged in a particular nanostructure. Adding water to the mix produces aluminium oxide or hydroxide and hydrogen – lots of it. “Ours does it to nearly 100 per cent efficiency in less than 3 minutes,” says team leader Scott Grendahl. Moreover, the new material offers at least an order of magnitude more energy than lithium batteries of the same weight. And unlike batteries, it can remain stable and ready for use indefinitely."...

https://www.newscientist.com/article/2142693-nano-aluminium-offers-fuel-cells-on-demand-just-add-water/

..."1 gram of Al = 0.0370 moles

Each mole Al yields 3 moles of electrons.0.0370 moles x 3 x 96500 C/mole = 10700 Coulombs

An Amp is a Coulomb per second, so one Amp flow would last 10700s.

10700 amp-s / 3600 s/hr =~ 3 Amp-Hours per gram of aluminum.

At 14g per beer can, that comes to about 42 Amp-Hrs per can

At 2 volts, that's about 300 kJ per can"...

http://www.hydrogenappliances.com/Hydrogendata.html

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#6
In reply to #5

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 3:50 PM

Lithium battery

Specific power

~250-~340 W/kg

[1]

X 10 = 2500 - 3400 W/kg or 2.5 - 3.4 kw/kg (minus conversion efficiency)...

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#9
In reply to #6

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 4:56 PM

You lost me, where did the factor of 10 come from? The article?

BTW - there are thermite based explosives also, lest we forget.

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#10
In reply to #9

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 5:05 PM

Yeah they said a magnitude higher energy content than lithium batteries...just taking pot shots at that 220 kw figure....

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#13
In reply to #10

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/29/2017 8:44 AM

When a typical field operative may have a total of 200 milliwatts consumption from laser, radio, satellite phone, it is hard to see the need, unless we are talking about a field HQ with hundreds of soldiers stationed there.

If we are talking about powering a large exoskeleton, then maybe we could be north of 3 kW. I hate it when reporters do not have a clue about the difference between energy content, power production, or the units of power, or the power levels actually required.

Vague.

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#15
In reply to #13

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/29/2017 2:55 PM

Yeah how are we supposed to do a mpg cost analysis comparison...What about a small nuclear reactor that followed the soldiers around on one of those autonomous electric tanks...

...or drone airdrops of fresh batteries....with edible aircraft...

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#17
In reply to #15

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/29/2017 4:28 PM

Mmmm...edible aircraft - I will have avocado lime ranch on my lettuce copter salad, with roasted road lizard on the side.

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#19
In reply to #17

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/29/2017 5:27 PM

Nah the guy's have adopted the lizard as a mascot...

We do have a hot dog though...?

...or a smart alecky ostrich....?

...if we can catch the bugger

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#20
In reply to #19

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/29/2017 9:05 PM

This pix needs a PIG instead of the DOG, ie: "...when PIGS fly..."

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#22
In reply to #20

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/30/2017 12:28 AM

Yes we're still working out the kinks in our pig delivery system......Gentlemen!!...grease your pigs!!!

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#24
In reply to #22

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/30/2017 11:45 AM

We can get them high enough, the trick is getting them to hang glide to the target...

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#27
In reply to #20

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

10/02/2017 8:53 AM

Ist der nicht ein luft Schweinhund?

It is not nice to treat Pug dogs so, our Pugle might actually like flying if she could catch doves, although for her, flying or not flying has never stopped her from catching the dull dove on occasion.

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#25
In reply to #19

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

10/02/2017 8:45 AM

That (the ostrich) looks like a receptionist I once ran into - shocker.

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#7

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 4:27 PM

Aluminum has a huge affinity for oxygen especially in the powdered form. In this case, it is reducing water to hydrogen.

Another interesting example is thermite welding. Thermite welding entails mixing aluminum powder with iron oxide. When a reaction between these two substances is initiated with a burning magnesium ribbon, the aluminum takes the oxygen from the iron, releasing enough energy to melt the iron.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exothermic_welding

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#8
In reply to #7

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/28/2017 4:53 PM

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#16

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/29/2017 3:57 PM

The Hall process put a lot of energy into that aluminum...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hall%E2%80%93H%C3%A9roult_process

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#18
In reply to #16

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/29/2017 4:30 PM

Yes it does! There is a new battery afoot (at a University) that actually puts Al3+ ion back onto an aluminum metal electrode (as the metal), so that counts as reduction just by charging the thing up.

There is also energy in making the nano-powder.

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#21

Re: New Army Front Deployed Energy Source

09/29/2017 10:25 PM

Random H2O

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