GA-EMS successfully demonstrates Aluminum Power System powering ROV

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General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems (GA-EMS) has announced that it successfully completed the first end-to-end demonstration of its Aluminum Power System (ALPS) on an underwater remotely operated vehicle (ROV) during a demonstration at a GA-EMS test tank facility in San Diego.

During the demonstration, a submerged ALPS provided hydrogen and oxygen to a Teledyne Energy Systems fuel cell, which provided electrical power to propel the ROV.

“We view fuel cells as an important component in supporting challenging mission requirements for large UUVs and other undersea platforms,” explains Rolf Ziesing, vice president of Programs at GA-EMS.

“Prior to this demonstration, we had successfully tested ALPS using only load banks. Working in cooperation with Teledyne, we were able to integrate an end to end system and test under real-world conditions. The results and data gathered during the demonstration will allow us to continue testing and advance ALPS to meet future undersea platform energy requirements.”

According to GA-EMS, ALPS provides an “energy-dense, cost-efficient” power source for UUVs, as well as manned vehicles. Not only does ALPS greatly reduce safety concerns, but it also provides a clean, reliable power source for long endurance missions and underwater operations.

“ALPS is a unique, high energy density system intended to provide up to 10 times the energy output of similar battery volume,” says Scott Forney, president of GA-EMS.

“With its unlimited shelf life, safe handling, and high energy density, ALPS can truly enable underwater “refueling stations” to support long-term underwater vehicle operations.”