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The Navy's new Riverine Command Boat (RCB-X)  (Source:
Navy hopes to cut its fossil fuel consumption in half by 2020

It seems these days that many people/organizations are trying to go green. We have companies like Dell installing solar panels in parking lotsnumerous auto manufacturers are selling/developing full-electric and gasoline-electric hybrid vehicles; and even homeowners look to reduce costs by using fluorescent lighting and eco-friendly building materials.

Not to be left out, the U.S. Navy is showing its "green" side with a new 49-foot Riverine Command Boat (RCB-X). The boat is powered by a 50/50 mix of NATO F-76 fuel and algae-based biofuel.

Although there is no talk about an increase (or penalty) in fuel efficiency by using the the fuel, it appears to be more of a policy decision with regards to stepping up the use of alternative fuels in the Navy's fleet.

"Going green is about combat capability and assuring Navy's mobility," said Rear Adm. Philip Cullom, director of the Chief of Naval Operations Energy and Environmental Readiness Division. "It is not just about natural security; it also strengthens national security. By having reliable and abundant alternate sources of energy, we will no longer be held hostage by any one source of energy, such as petroleum.”

As with all new and experimental technology, the price to use such fuel in this prototype vehicle is astronomical. And when we say astronomical, we mean it -- the Marine Corps Times reports that the Navy bought 20,055 gallons of algae-based biodiesel at a jaw-dropping cost of $424 per gallon.

According to Wired, the Navy uses 80,000 barrels of oil per day to fuel its ships and wishes to cut that number in half within a decade through the use of biofuels and nuclear power.

"First and foremost, energy conservation extends tactical range of our forces while also preserving precious resources," Cullom added. "Our goal, as a Navy, is to be an 'early adopter' of new technologies that enhance national security in an environmentally sustainable way."

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RE: Volume and production
By snakeInTheGrass on 10/29/2010 3:13:18 PM , Rating: 2
We've all heard the saying, "When all you have is a $500 dollar hammer, everything looks like a $100 nail."

Makes sense though - I hear about civilian hammer accidents and deaths all the time, so I can see the reasoning here. Like when contractors put hammers into their tool chests in their pickups, get in an accident, and *BAM*!, dozens of casualties all because they didn't have enough red tape and kickbacks to hold them in place in the vehicle.

RE: Volume and production
By Dr of crap on 10/29/2010 3:18:47 PM , Rating: 2
Other the above poster, which I think agrees with me, I'm I on the wrong web site?
It's this the one where everyone rants and ravs about the cost of PCs, and cell phones, and iPads, and such?
And you all are OK with $500 hammers???

I suspose you all LIKE the polictial ads, and have voted all your life as well, thinking that the one elected will CHANGE the world!?!

Good luck with that!

RE: Volume and production
By snakeInTheGrass on 10/29/2010 4:26:44 PM , Rating: 2
I'm definitely expecting the next election to fix it since I hear the politicos are going to vote to curb their own cushy revolving-door job, campaign-funding, and insider-influence thing they have going.

No, most people aren't outraged, they're lined up buying the story they're being sold, apparently. Now if you had posted about the $500 iPad (which actually does have development costs, more parts costs, etc.), the boards would be up in arms! ;)

"If you can find a PS3 anywhere in North America that's been on shelves for more than five minutes, I'll give you 1,200 bucks for it." -- SCEA President Jack Tretton

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