Army-green gets greener: USARPAC Soldiers test clean energy sources during RIMPAC
By Staff Sgt. Kyle Richardson July 11, 2014
FORD ISLAND, Hawaii (July 11, 2014) -- For years, the word green has been associated with the U.S. Army. However, with the implementation of renewable energy initiatives, the Army has shared its "green" characteristics while taking on the challenges of "going green."
For 2014 Rim of the Pacific training exercise, U.S. Army Pacific and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers trained with a little clean-energy and displayed several renewable sources during the world's largest maritime international exercise.
Soldiers setup a variety of clean-energy power-producing equipment such as wind-turbines, solar panels, a solar shade, and even used a hydrogen-powered car to generate enough power for 350 people located at a training area on Ford Island, Monday through today.
Sgt. Roderick Macleod, a prime power mechanic with the U.S. Corps of Engineers, said that the clean energy sources could run 24 hours continuously for several days, creating enough energy for moderate daily activity.
"Clean energy is very effective," said Macleod, a native of Marietta, Georgia. "The power output is less than the traditional sense of powering a site, but it is a lot more sustainable and there are no emissions. What's coming out of it is 120 volts, and our devices don't know the difference. At this point it just becomes a matter of cost effectiveness and it's becoming more affordable every year."
Soldiers and engineers demonstrated how renewable energy sources could assist service members during military operations. The group of service members setup alternate energy sources for a humanitarian aid and disaster relief training event.
"This equipment is expeditionary. You can deploy with it quickly. You don't have to worry about bringing large generator sets and the logistics that comes with it, [specifically] the fuel required to operate it. This equipment can be flown out or jumped in with airborne or ground units, set up quickly and be self-sufficient," said Drew Downing, a Detroit native and U.S. Army Pacific science advisor.
Sgt. Jeremy Nissly, from Reading, Pennsylvania, power station manager with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, said that clean energy is the future of the Army.
"Solar and wind powered energy sources are very valuable. There are times when you can't get resupplied or you have to conduct operations without running a loud generator. As the Army changes to cleaner energy sources, we'll be ready to make that transition," said Nissly.
As the Army slowly moves toward a green energy environment, Downing said that U.S. Army Pacific Soldiers will continue to train on different clean energy sources reducing the effects to the environment but also maximizing the success of the U.S. Army Pacific Soldiers.