Why do fuel cells have an advantage in counterinsurgency?

Why do fuel cells have an advantage in counterinsurgency?

There have been several armed conflicts around the world since World War II. In these conflicts, armed mines and improvised explosive devices have been planted by the occupying force or by the State. During the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, muja-hideens (terrorists) planted improvised explosive devices throughout the country, severely maiming the local population and injuring US military personnel. In Iraq, Pakistan, Somalia and other Islamic countries, terrorists have planted improvised explosive devices that inflict serious injuries when Americans step on the pressure plates of the improvised explosive devices. Military planners and defense experts believe the insurgents use improvised explosive devices as “weapons of strategic influence.” Military experts also believe that IEDs and the casualties they cause cannot be eliminated. Because the devices are implanted in hidden spots along the road, even armored personnel carriers equipped with powerful lasers may miss the opportunity to destroy them. Field commanders typically deploy soldiers equipped with the latest detection sensors to defuse improvised explosive devices, but these soldiers must carry heavy backpacks that contain detection sensors, batteries, ammunition and other necessary items. Table 1 summarizes monthly global terrorist operations (excluding crimes committed in Iraq and Afghanistan).

Table 1 - Global monthly acts of terrorism, excluding Iraq and Afghanistan
Table 1 – Global monthly acts of terrorism, excluding Iraq and Afghanistan

From these figures, January, October, November and December were the peak periods for terrorist activity. In order to avoid bodily injury, property damage, and battlefield deaths, anti-IED activities are absolutely necessary, regardless of month or year. Commanders on the battlefield are looking for efficient and reliable counter-IED devices with lower cost, size, weight and power consumption. Whether the anti-IED equipment is carried by individual soldiers or armored vehicles, the prescribed design requirements are essential for cost-effective and reliable operation on the battlefield.

Commanders on the battlefield are looking for efficient and reliable counter-IED equipment at the lowest cost, size, weight and power consumption. Regardless of whether the anti-IED equipment is carried by infantry or heavy armor, the above design requirements are essential for cost-effective and reliable operations on the battlefield.
Specific requirements for anti-IED equipment. Using a compact and efficient fuel cell will not only significantly reduce the weight and volume of the device, but also increase the duration of the mission. Furthermore, installing fuel cells on military ground robots will significantly increase their mobility and ability to perform demanding missions of long duration. Army scientists anticipate large-scale deployment of small unmanned ground vehicles (SUGVs) in harsh environments for surveillance and reconnaissance missions. Preliminary studies suggest that, depending on the tasks involved, the most desirable fuel cell unit has an output capacity of 5 to 15 kW. Reliable and low-cost fuel cells can meet the electrical power requirements of these SUGVs. In addition to the U.S. Air Force and Army, the Navy is also considering deploying unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) for special missions. Here again, fuel cells can play a vital role in providing clean, noise-free energy. For more battery knowledge, please visit tycorun.com.

Experts in this particular field say it is best to detect and disable IED devices before they are activated. In this way, bodily injury and death on the battlefield can be avoided, greatly reducing the personal distressing experience of military personnel working in these hostile regions, as well as reducing insurance and medical costs. These devices must be detected and disabled so that the ambulance helicopter can land safely to evacuate wounded soldiers for medical treatment. The United States and other countries have invested billions of dollars in anti-IED operations [8].

Deeply buried IEDs and explosively shaped armor-piercing rounds (EFPs) are the deadliest forms of improvised explosive devices (IEDs), according to defense experts. These devices can be triggered using remote control technology. These experts also believe that deeply buried improvised explosive devices, often containing hundreds of kilograms of explosives, are capable of destroying heavily armoured vehicles, including mine-resistant ambush protection (MRAP) vehicles, and killing everyone on board. Anti-IED experts point out that the kinetic energy of the fragment is so high that it can penetrate most types of armor. Five distinct functions, including prediction, detection, prevention, suppression, and mitigation, must be addressed in the design and development of simple counter-IED devices. Also, it is important to choose a reliable high-power battery or fuel cell. The power source can be designed using a set of batteries or a miniaturized fuel cell stack. In addition to the logistical issues of charging batteries in a battlefield environment, there are also weight and size issues that come with battery packs. In these cases, the choice of fuel cells provides cost-effective and reliable operation in addition to significantly reducing the weight and size of the power source. In addition, higher electrical energy can be obtained from a fuel cell compared to a rechargeable battery.

Research conducted by the author shows that there are only a few fuel cell design configurations that are best suited for drone applications. In order to ensure the smooth completion of tactical missions in the battlefield environment, small size, light weight, improved conversion efficiency, low cost fuel, high structural integrity and ultra-high reliability are the most demanding requirements for the selected fuel cell. The fuel used in the battery must be free of toxic gases, high-temperature fumes or vapors, and carbon-oxygen content.

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