The Navy has placed an emphasis on finding alternative fuel sources, and its latest effort is focused on one of the most plentiful resources on earth – sea water. Scientists from the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) and the Office of Naval Research are working on converting sea water into jet fuel, something that could put the Navy one step closer to its goal of a "Great Green Fleet," reports Military Times.
It may be 10 years before researchers are successful with their ambitious project, but a victory in this field could greatly change the way the Navy operates. For starters, it would allow aircraft carriers to stay deployed longer without having to worry about refueling.
"The key is funding research to reduce the power needed for the process, so more fuel can be made," said Heather Willauer, a NRL chemist and one of the writers of a study on the impact of the research. "In addition, research focus should be directed toward reducing the size, weight and footprint of the technologies to make it feasible for a sea-based process."
There have been mixed feelings about the growing effort to make the Navy more eco-friendly, but Navy Secretary Ray Mabus wants 50 percent of the fleet to operate on renewable energy sources by 2020, according to Forbes.