Logistics: September 26, 2004


All the new electronics the troops are using (GPS, night vision, special radios, PDAs, laptops) is causing a supply problem with batteries, or additional fuel to run generators so they can recharge the rechargeable batteries so many of the troops are using. Were talking lots of electrical power, with the average soldier using 2-5 kilowatts an hour when out on operations. That was not a problem during Vietnam. But now the troops need the juice if they are operate safely and effectively. Moreover, before going into combat, many soldiers will toss half used batteries and insert fresh ones. Officers and NCOs have a hard time stopping the troops from doing this. After all, they are going into a life and death situation, and who wants to run out of power on their night vision goggles at a crucial moment. The army is working on new ideas, like hand cranked rechargers, solar panels and more rechargeable batteries. Meanwhile, everyone tries to cope, with troops loading up on batteries and ammo before heading out.


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