Navy going hybrid electric

USS Paulding (DD-22) port side, camouflaged, Queenstown, Ireland, 1918. She was the USN's first oil-fired steamship, with earlier destroyers and torpedo boats being coal

USS Paulding (DD-22) port side, camouflaged, Queenstown, Ireland, 1918. She was the USN’s first oil-fired steam destroyer, with earlier destroyers and torpedo boats being coal

Destroyers in the Navy started off as coal-firing steamships, then from the 1920s through the 1970s were oil-fired steam turbines (although there were a series of nuclear-reactor steam turbined tin cans labeled as guided missile destroyer leaders in the 1960s which were later redesignated as cruisers)

A port bow view of the nuclear-powered guided missile cruiser USS BAINBRIDGE (CGN-25) underway. When she was commissioned as a destroyer in 1961, she broke with the oil-fired steam Navy of the past

A port bow view of the nuclear-powered guided missile cruiser USS BAINBRIDGE (CGN-25) underway. When she was commissioned as a destroyer in 1961, she broke with the oil-fired steam Navy of the past

Starting with the Spruance-class in the 1970s, the Navy went to (dual fuel capable) gas turbines, the current go-to for the fleet.

Now, the Navy will begin installing a hybrid electric drive (HED) system on 34 Flight IIA Arleigh Burke guided missile destroyers in a bid to lower the fuel costs of the ships.

This will see a HED motor installed is capable of turning the drive shaft and propelling the ship at speeds less than 13 kts. That speed range would work well with missions like ballistic missile defense or maritime security operations. For high speed, its back to the quartet of GE LM-2500 gas turbines.

Having a hybrid electric drive will mean more time on station in far off West Pac and South West Asia tours and less dependence on oilers. Afterall, it’s easier to load up a pallet of food by chopper to extend time at sea rather than 700 barrels of fuel.

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About laststandonzombieisland

Let me introduce myself. I am a bit of a conflict junkie. I am fascinated by war and warfare, assassination, personal protection and weaponry ranging from spud guns and flame throwers to thermonuclear bombs and Soviet-trained Ebola monkeys. In short, if it’s violent or a tool to create violence it is kind of my thing. I have written a few thousand articles on the dry encyclopedia side for such websites as, University of Guns, Outdoor Hub, Tac-44, History Times, Big Game Hunter, Glock Forum, Firearms, and Combat Forums; as well as for print publications like England Expects, and Strike First Strike Fast. Several magazines such as Sea Classics, Military Historian and Collector, Mississippi Sportsman and Warship International have carried my pieces. Additionally I am on staff as a naval consultant and writer for Eye Spy Intelligence Magazine. Currently I am working on several book projects including an alternative history novel about the US-German War of 1916, and a biography of Southern gadfly and soldier of fortune Bennett Doty. My first novel, about the coming zombie apocalypse was released in 2012 by Necro Publications and can be found at as was the prequel, Chimera-44. I am currently working on book two of that series: "Pirates of the Zombie Coast." In my day job I am a contractor for the U.S. federal government in what could best be described as the ‘Force Protection’ field. In this I am an NRA-certified firearms, and less-than-lethal combat instructor.

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