3 Energy Prototypes to Replace Batteries in Combat


Bionic Power KneeThe Army laid out three pieces of equipment the service has been testing to try and cut down the number of batteries soldiers have to carry in combat. Army official predicted the average soldier could soon need to carry up to 14 pounds of batteries for a 72-hour mission unless significant breakthroughs are made.

Here is a rundown of three top development projects:

Knee Harvester (photo above) -- As shown in the photo, the knee harvester, built by Bionic Power, collects kinetic energy as the soldier moves his or her legs. Some feedback that soldiers have already sent back to Kit Up! on this one is how annoying it would be on long patrols. One soldier said he'd rather just carry the batteries.

Lightning Pack Rucksack HarvesterLightning Pack’s Rucksack Harvester --  The pack built by Lightning Pack uses a miniature power generator and collects the kinetic energy drawn by the movement of the backpack on the soldier as he moves on patrol. The pack can generate up to 40 watts when running and up to 22 watts when the soldier is walking.

MC10 Solar HelmetSolar Panel Harvester -- Built onto the top of the helmet and pack, these solar panels are a thin layer of gallium arsenide crystals. The pack can generate up to 10 watts and the helmet can generate 7 watts if under the sun.

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