US Army Demonstrates Energy Informed Operations Microgrid

The US Army tested its base camp power and energy technologies during a demonstration on Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, April 13-24.

The Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center (CERDEC) assembled, monitored, managed and demonstrated its Energy Informed Operations, or EIO, microgrid. The EIO system was designed with an open architecture to allow power resources to easily plug in and play into the grid.

“Increased capabilities, for the Soldier, have caused energy demands on the battlefield to increase,” said Marnie Bailey, CERDEC Command, Power and Integration Directorate, or CP&I, EIO team lead. “Energy Informed Operations aims to provide the Soldier the ability to interactively monitor and manage power systems in order to optimize power availability, allowing the unit to maintain mission critical systems needed to achieve mission success.”

The army team presented nine integrated technology and non-materiel solution sets in a collaborative effort to reduce fuel resupply by 25 percent, reduce water resupply by 75 percent, and decrease waste generation for back haul by 50 percent while maintaining current quality of life. The objective is to do this at 50 to 1,000 personnel expeditionary base camps.

“These nine technologies are critical to the objectives of reducing the fuel, water and waste water removal requirements of expeditionary base camps, which will reduce the need for re-supply and reduce the risk to our warfighters conducting re-supply operations,” said Maj. Gen. John F. Wharton, U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command commanding general.

The EIO team’s microgrid supported 24-hour operations for Soldiers housed in the Barracks Hut during the night and in field exercises during the day.
“A battlefield environment, based on energy informed operations, will enable our forces to be more agile, more efficient and more able to rapidly adapt to any mission conditions. This will result in increases in lethality, survivability and mission effectiveness,” Bailey said.