Chinese military scientist gets top citation for research that helps warships use full electric propulsion

By Yang Sheng Source:Global Times Published: 2018/7/20 22:03:40

Chinese military scientist Xiao Fei. Photo: Hubei Daily


 
A Chinese military scientist has received a first-class merit citation, with military experts saying that the scientist's contributions have made China's next-generation warships, including aircraft carriers and destroyers realize full electric propulsion (FEP).

This means the power system for China's new warships will become more intelligent and can supply more power to the weapons system. That also means the combat capabilities of China's next generation of warship will experience a qualitative leap, and match the most advanced warships of the US and UK, military experts told the Global Times on Friday.

Central Military Commission Chairman Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and Chinese president, has signed orders to award a first-class merit citation to Professor Xiao Fei, head of a research institution at the Naval University of Engineering, the Xinhua News Agency reported on Thursday.

"A first-class merit citation is very rare at peacetime, which means Xiao's contributions to China's military development are extraordinary and remarkable," Wang Yunfei, a naval expert and retired PLA Navy officer, told the Global Times.

The PLA Daily reported that Xiao, 41, is a key member of the team led by Rear Admiral Ma Weiming, also an academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, at the Naval University of Engineering. Ma's team is responsible for researching the most significant areas for the Chinese navy, including nuclear submarines and aircraft carriers.

Xiao's main contributions focus on a military electric power system that helps China gain the FEP technology. "The medium-voltage direct current (MVDC) integrated power system that Xiao developed has transformed the Chinese navy from traditional mechanical propulsion to FEP," the PLA Daily reported on Thursday.

"There are only two types of destroyers in the world with an FEP system: the Type 45 of the UK Royal Navy and the US Navy's Zumwalt-class destroyer. The FEP is the future of the warship's power system, and China's next generation destroyer, Type 052E, an improved version of Type 052D, and the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier will be able to use FEP," Wang noted.

FEP can provide the ships with stable and strong power supply, and allows the ships to simultaneously use multiple weapon systems and radar or electromagnetic interference, said Song Zhongping, a military expert and TV commentator. "For instance, Xiao's MVDC power system can realize FEP, and FEP is the foundation of using the electromagnetic gun on a ship."

Type 055, China home-built 10,000-ton class destroyer, has not been using the FEP, which uses a diesel-electric and gas propulsion system, but it is very likely to see an improved version with FEP in the future, Wang added.

Another one of Xiao's achievements, the DC Microgrid system, has been "successfully used on the wind and solar power integration generator on islands and reefs," the PLA Daily reported.

Xiao's "intelligent microgrid system" has provided stable and reliable power to Chinese troops on islands in the South China Sea, said Wei Dongxu, a Beijing-based military expert. "Power used to be a problem for the military force on islands, but Xiao's achievements have improved the self-reliance and combat capabilities of PLA troops on the South China Sea islands."
Newspaper headline: Military scientist gets 1st class merit citation


Posted in: MILITARY

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