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DIU seeking mobile energy generation solutions for austere environments (MEGA)

The Department of Defense (DoD) engages in operations far from United States territories, necessitating expansive logistics tails and substantial power generation equipment in order to operate effectively. In the near future, the DoD likely will continue to operate in distant and disbursed locals and face increased threats and obstacles to the logistical supply line unencountered in the previous half-century.

Simultaneously, energy requirements for vehicle-born or supported combat systems, such as air defense, directed energy, unmanned aerial systems defense, advanced, Command, Control, Communications, Computers (C4) Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) (C4ISR, etc.) are steadily increasing.

DoD is therefore focusing on reducing demand both on the supply system and the combat equipment footprint in order to maintain complete operational ability to meet any mission.

Currently, one of the major components and consumers of the logistic footprint is fuel necessary to power generators, tactical vehicles, mobile command posts, and air defense systems. Nearly half of the strategic lift for certain combat systems is dedicated to supporting vital energy production equipment such as generators. With little electricity storage available, generators run continuously to provide instant power burning copious quantities of fuel. By reducing or eliminating the reliance on ancillary power generation, combat formations can become more maneuverable, efficient, and lethal in future conflicts.

To achieve this, the DoD is seeking commercial solutions to disseminate energy, on-demand, from tactical vehicles to supported tactical equipment and systems, bypassing the need for supplementary generators. Solutions should incorporate the vehicle’s native on-board power generation source (e.g. the engine) to provide electrical power to high energy users both on-board and external to the vehicle (such as missile systems, command and control on-the-move, radar systems, directed energy weapons, and expeditionary power.

There are two tracks to this opening; a total system solution, and a component level solution. The technology for each track is complementary to the other but a given solution does not need to match the requirements for both solutions.

Track 1: Vehicle Integrated Power Kit (VIPK). VIPK is a mild hybrid electrification prototype retrofit kit for tactical vehicles (such as, but not limited to the Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles, or FMTV platform) that advances anti-idle capabilities and provides high voltage power for applications such as missile defense, command post, electric vehicle charging, and directed energy weapons.

Ideal solutions for VIPK would include the following key attributes:

  • Tactical Microgrid Standard (TMS) compliant and allows for establishment of a fast-forming Direct Current (DC) microgrid.

  • Integrate a power generation system capable of producing up to 120kW at 600 VDC in accordance with MIL-STD-3072 and the Tactical Microgrid Standard MIL-STD-3071 for DC droop control.

  • Integrate on-board and off-board 600 VDC power distribution and MIL-STD-3071 compliant communications.

  • Integrate 600VDC to 208VAC 5-wire, 3-phase inverter that provides up to 60kW of continuous AC power for use either on-board or off-board.

  • Ability to display operator, maintenance, and diagnostic information.

  • Anti-Idle Capability to reduce idle time that automatically stops and restarts the engine (auto-start/stop) while the vehicle is stationary and specific conditions are met (specific conditions to be discussed in follow-on phases).

    The Anti-idle System should include energy storage to power HVAC, electrical loads, and mission essential equipment with the engine off (Mission essential equipment includes: communications, weapon systems, anti-IED equipment, and lighting. If selected, for Phase II, companies will be provided with appropriate energy draws).

    The system should be compatible with 6T Li-ion batteries that comply with MIL-PRF-32565C. The Anti-Idle capability can incorporate a current government-provided solution or can be a new design specific to the VIPK solution.

Track 2: electric Power Export and Expansion Kit (ePEEK). ePEEK is a low-cost, standardized, all-encompassing, modular, export power solution that can direct exportable power directly from any tactical vehicle, whether it be a hybridized cargo truck or an all-electric reconnaissance vehicle. It should also offer functionality in a dismounted ground tactical microgrid application.

It is a 30kW 120/208V 3-phase AC electrical power capability via two parallelable 15kW modules contained within a standardized and scalable kit. The kit must be flexible enough to be upfitted to any hybrid vehicle, battery-electric vehicle, or other platform that contains a high-voltage (HV) DC bus, allowing high levels of electrical power for external loads; generation of the electrical power is outside the scope of this AOI.

Ideal solutions for ePEEK would include the following key attributes:

  • As a standalone system, convert high-voltage DC (between 300-800V) electrical power from an external source to AC electrical power for unidirectional export to a load (T)

  • Function as a bidirectional Type VII - Power Conversion system when connected to a Tactical Generator/Microgrid in accordance with MIL-STD-3071. (O)

  • Install on a vehicle in a modular, rack-style solution capable of accepting a total of two inverter modules in two different configurations. In the base configuration, deliver a total output of 15kW sustained exportable AC electrical power to a load from a single inverter module. In the optional expansion configuration, deliver a total output of 30kW of sustained exportable AC electrical power to a load from two inverter modules operating in a parallel architecture.

  • Export AC electrical power nominally at 120/208 VAC three phase, four wire, plus ground in a wye configuration with the following output interfaces per 15kW inverter module:

    • One (1) 40A Class L, three phase, four wire, plus ground electrical connector. (T)

    • One (1) 40A Class L three phase, four wire, plus ground electrical connector and one (1) 20A 120 VAC weather-resistant GFCI protected duplex receptacle with a cover. (O)

  • Communicate load, control and diagnostics data to the host vehicle platform via SAE J1939 CAN interface.

  • Incorporate a fully integrated thermal management system capable of allowing the system to be operated continuously at the maximum rated power output (15kW or 30kW) in ambient temperatures from -25 °F (-32 °C) to 125 °F (52 °C) under full radiant heating (1120 W/m2).

  • Operate while in a dismounted fashion without losing any system capability.

  • Meet ATPD-2404 requirements for shock/vibration, immersion, rain/snow, and washdown.

  • Including both inverter modules and installation kit, have a maximum volume of 10,000 cubic inches (T) 7000 cubic inches (O), subject to the following requirements for the maximum dimension in each direction: Length: 39” x Width: 16” x Height: 21” (all dimensions in inches maximum).

  • Including both modules and installation kit, weigh no more than 130 lbs (T) 100 lbs (O).


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