Chapter 1. OVERVIEW. ELECTRICAL POWER. Electrical power is an essential element of military operations. Without it, many crucial systems cease to operate. Field Manual (FM) supports engineer, Army, and joint missions throughout full spectrum operations. This FM provides a doctrinal basis for planning. FM The training and experience of prime power NCOs give them an in- depth working knowledge of electrical and electromechanical systems. Each 52E .

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NTG power plants comprise the Army’s family of portable generators larger than kW. The result of this growing dependence 5-242 electricity is a continual increase in the quantity and quality of power required to support operations. Prime power operations also support postwar operations including redeployment, emergency restoration of host-nation services, and humanitarian assistance.

Chapter 4 provides detailed information on prime power missions and capabilities. The recommended power source is determined based on the load survey.

The mission of engineer prime power units is to generate electrical power and provide advice and technical assistance on all aspects of electrical power and distribution systems in support of military operations. Appendix A contains a discussion of power-generation concepts.

Prime power may be supplemented with portable commercial generation equipment when it is available.

For planning and estimating purposes, a team can They 5-4222 also install, operate, and maintain nonstandard, portable power-generation equipment and operate and maintain some fixed commercial power plants. The prime power team conducts a load survey to determine the amount of power a supported unit needs and what the distribution requirements are. Maintain 10 km of buried secondary distribution line. In addition, prime power can augment both sources. The load survey is a vital preliminary step in providing prime power support.


FM Table of Contents

Workload estimates for these tasks, which are provided below, are for planning and estimating purposes only and are highly dependent on controlling variables. Once installed and operational, these generators should be turned over to the supported unit to operate and maintain, thus freeing the prime power team for additional missions. It is also useful in identifying potential electrical hazards that could result in damage to connected equipment, electrocution, or electrical fire.

Because the prime power teams have working knowledge of multiple power systems, they are able to repair, maintain, and operate industrial power systems and their associated controls. Installation, operation, maintenance, and repair of prime power assets are the responsibility of engineer prime power units.

The prime power team is responsible for making the connections to the service equipment. The team can also repair and maintain airfield lighting and other specialized illumination systems.

PDF [Download] Field Manual FM 3-34.480 (FM 5-422) Engineer Prime Power Operations April 2007

Prime power teams can construct and maintain temporary, ground-laid or buried primary and secondary distribution systems. Table shows the various possible configurations and the manpower requirements for continuous operation.

Design calculations include voltage drops as a result of line loss and grounding requirements. Each prime power team is equipped with four kW generators, giving the team a 3-MW peak power-production capability.


The use of prime power usually requires the construction of nonstandard distribution networks to take power to the users who need it. The prime power unit commander is the theater’s subject-matter expert for electrical power.

FM Chptr 1 Overview

They provide a mobile 5-4222 of power to units operating in the field. Prime power units satisfy the critical electrical requirements above the capability of TACGENS and below the availability of commercial power.

Service equipment, which is installed by interior electricians, is the main distribution panel or switched fuse box inside the structure. Prime power personnel can help develop specifications for electrical performance contracts and purchase contracts for electrical material. During war, the primary objective of prime power operations is to support force sustainment in the communications zone COMMZproviding power generation and power-related technical support to rear-area units, facilities, and activities.

The prime power unit provides power-related technical assistance to CORs.

The completed design includes circuit diagram and site layout drawings or sketches, a complete bill of materials BOMestimated work requirements, and construction time.

Prime power is reliable, commercial-grade utility power continuously generated by nontactical generators NTGs. In this role, he acts as an electrical engineer staff officer to the theater engineer in a mature theater, or to the supported headquarters when a theater engineer is not available, providing information and recommendations on cm issues.