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Why The U.S. Military Is Falling In Love With Electric Vehicles

Move over Tesla Motors, the U.S. military is rewriting the rules of electricity-induced locomotion.

Rather than storing electricity supplied by the electric grid, the next-generation of electric vehicles may be designed to supply self-generated electricity to the electric grid.

The U.S. military is integrating a variety of onboard electric generating technologies into combat and tactical wheeled vehicles.

And for good reason.
US Military Electric Cars
As modern military operations have shifted away from historical modes of conflict where force-on-force combat occurred on a “front line,” the distinction between combat and logistical vehicles has become blurred.

In today’s threat environment, logistics and other noncombat vehicles commonly encounter the same range of threats as combat vehicles.

As a result, the ability to generate significant amounts of electrical power has become increasingly critical for the full spectrum of military vehicles.

Non-combat vehicles are increasingly designed to accommodate combat-grade vehicle electronic systems, or what the military calls “vectronics,” including sensors, jammers and communication and control equipment.

The ability to support the electric power needed to operate these systems has become a critical issue.

In the past, military support vehicles have had relatively modest power requirements with onboard electric loads seldom exceeding that required to support a single radio system.

Not so long ago, vehicle electronic systems could be operated for short periods of time without starting the vehicle’s engine. By contrast, it has become increasingly necessary to keep vehicle engines running nearly continuously to power the electronic equipment necessary for the vehicle to complete its intended mission.

The need to power the plethora of emerging sensors and communication systems installed in military vehciles is putting a significant strain on current vehicle power systems.

Given the explosive growth of power requirements for vehicles and the long-term service life of most military vehicles, even if it were possible to meet all of today’s power requirements, those systems would be pressed to meet the anticipated new power demands in the not-so-distant future.

As a result, military vehicles are now being designed to include a variety of on-board power generators capable of generating significant amounts of electricity while the vehicle stationary.

Transmission-Integral Generators (TIG) are one of the most widely adopted on-board generator technologies. TIGs are fully integrated transmission and power systems that can generate as much as 125 kW from the engine drive shaft to support the virtual cornucopia of electronic sensors, jammers and communication equipment being designed for the military’s fleet of vehicles.

DRS Technologies, the Huntsville, AL-based subsidiary of Italy’s industrial conglomerate Finmeccanica SpA, has begun installing TIGs, which it calls the On-Board Vehicle Power (OBVP) system, on the U.S. Army’s High Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicles, which are more commonly known as Humvees.

TIGs are not the only game in town.

In July, TM3 Systems, a microgrid start-up company founded last year in Royal Oak, MI, completed a demonstration project that used the propulsion system from a General Dynamics Electric Drive (eDrive) armored vehicle to generate electricity for a Tactical Modular Mobile MicroGrid (TM3) power system.

Meanwhile, Oshkosh Defense has developed the ProPulse hybrid diesel-electric system for military vehicles, which can generate enough electricity to power an entire airfield or hospital.

Source: Forbes

Our Gear Giveaway Winner is Announced!

We had a great time at DUG East this year.
We want to thank you for coming to meet us!
As promised, we would like to announce our gear giveaway winner: 

Brian Teller - XTO Energy 

Dug East Logo
We would love to hear what everyone thought of the show! Feel free to comment below. We look forward to hearing from you. 

National Safety Apparel aquires Spentex

National Safety Apparel (NSA), a leading manufacturer of safety apparel, has acquired Spentex®, a brand of technologically advanced safety apparel designed for use in a wide range of industries including petrochemical, electrical power and steel, from Tulsa-based Global Safety Labs (GSL).
National Safety Apparel and Spentex Logo
The purchase of Spentex further solidifies National Safety Apparel’s portfolio of premium flame resistant (FR) clothing brands. It is anticipated that the Spentex® products will be promoted to National Safety Apparel’s distributor network alongside their existing ArcGuard® and thermal protective brands.

Chuck Grossman, President & CEO of National Safety Apparel is quoted as saying “This acquisition is a testament to National Safety Apparel’s strong desire to remain the industry leader in offering cutting edge, innovative products. We are very excited to add the Spentex® brand products to our lineup of premium safety apparel.”

Marty Rowland, CEO of Global Safety Labs states “This transaction is a great fit for both parties. NSA gets a great brand in Spentex® and this divestiture allows GSL to focus on our innovative Firebane® fire suppression technology going forward.”

National Safety Apparel is a market leader in the design and manufacture of high-quality safety apparel for the electric, oil & gas, thermal, cut, rainwear and hi-visibility markets. NSA is registered toISO 9001 with design, by Smithers Quality Assessments. National Safety Apparel was recently awarded the Top Workplaces 2012 Award Northeast Ohio and the WIRE-Net Mission Builder Award for investing in plant expansion, job creation and new business growth.

Join us in congratulating one of our own while supporting a great charity!

Crain's 40 Under 40 LogoWe’re extremely proud to announce some EXCITING news on the home front here at Slate Rock Safety. Our President, Kim Wilson, has received the tremendous honor in being named to Crain’s Forty under 40 program, which honors individuals for their professional success and civic contributions.
In association with this honor, the Forty Under 40 Facebook Fan Favorite Competition is LIVE! The person who gets the most “likes” will receive $500 toward the charity of their choice. Kim has chosen the Children’s Center of Medina County, which nurtures abused and neglected children through collaboration, advocacy, treatment, and prevention.
Follow this link and you will find Kim Wilson at the very bottom. “Like” Kim’s profile and feel free to comment!
The contest ends November 17th. Share the link, because every Like counts!

Cleveland’s burning: 21 set themselves on fire for Guinness World Record

Everything burns in Cleveland.
In the city of the flaming river, a group of people lit themselves on fire to set a new world record.

The 21 burners gathered on Saturday in the parking lot of a local restaurant as a roaring crowd counted down.

“Three! Two! One! Ignite!”

USA Today Fire Image

Torches flared, and the crew burst into flame, marching back and forth across the lot with their arms extended like blazing airplanes.
The 32-second stunt ended with a stop, drop and roll into the Guinness World Records for “most people performing full body burns.”
Cleveland printing company Hotcards staged the spectacle as a fiery fundraiser on the banks of the Cuyahoga River, a waterway once so polluted it famously caught fire in 1969.

“We take a lot of heat in Cleveland as the Burning River City. Yet, it became the catalyst for a lot Cleveland pride, including environmental movements, breweries, and a whole lot of 'Hot in Cleveland' fame,” Hotcards’ CEO John Gadd said in a statement. “It’s a unique part of our legacy that we can embrace and give new meaning with such a magical spectacle.”

USA Today Image People on Fire

Stuntman Ted Batchelor coordinated a 55-person team of “burners” and “igniters” over two months of training. The burners wore fireproof gel suits under layers of cotton and wool that served as the fuel for the blaze.
Local CEOs, politicians, a funeral director, minister and radio DJ filled out the crew of flaming participants.

Batchelor lit two of them himself and scanned the lot as his blazing pupils glowed in the night.
“I could see it all,” Batchelor told the Daily News. “And in my mind, it looked great. I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, this looks beautiful.'”

Image of Group Set on Fire

Batchelor, 55, had coordinated the previous record of 17 full-body burns in 2009 in South Russell, Ohio, and has set five Guinness records in his life.
He’s well aware of the national embarrassment Cleveland suffered after the burning river and said the record was a way for the city to spark interest in its resurgence while raising money for the Cleveland Foodbank and Brick by Brick, an Ohio-based charity that aids women and children in South Africa.

“We’re going to take that fire and use it to our best interests,” Batchelor said.

The burners wore fireproof gel suit under their flaming layers of cotton and wool. They marched back and forth for 32 seconds in front of a roaring crowd at Shooters nightclub in Cleveland. The new 21-person record eclipses the previous record of 17, also set in Ohio.

Source: NY Daily News

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