Vice Chief of Naval Operations (VCNO) Adm. Bill Lescher made a brief visit to the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS), April 28, touring several key research labs and speaking with senior leadership about NPS’ consequential work and its impact on the Navy.
Lescher visited one of NPS’ additive manufacturing (AM) labs, the Center for Cybersecurity and Cyber Operations, and the Center for Autonomous Vehicle Research (CAVR) where NPS students briefed their ongoing research that aims to solve key operational problems.
In February, NPS was the first to receive delivery of Xerox’s ElemX Liquid Metal Printer, which Lescher got to see firsthand. Through a Collaborative Research and Development Agreement with Xerox, NPS faculty and students use the cutting-edge technology to conduct applied AM research aiming to reduce reliance on logistics chains, and give underway ships the ability to 3-D print replacement parts or tools.
Lescher also met with students in NPS’ Cyber Battle Lab and CAVR Lab, receiving insight from students about their immersive research in the fields of artificial intelligence and autonomy.
“[Talking with Lescher] was a great experience,” said NPS student U.S. Navy Lt. Timothy Howarth. “I think [his visit] is important because it gives him an opportunity to see not only what my research is capable of and how it can impact the Fleet, but how our students, in general, provide very real solutions for today and even tomorrow’s challenges.”
Another key engagement for Lescher was a visit with the recently established Wayne P. Hughes, Jr. Naval Warfare Studies Institute (NWSI). The goal of NWSI is to expedite the Navy’s ability to access the university’s immense talent and resources in taking on its most complex warfighting issues. Leaders and faculty from NWSI explained how interdisciplinary studies, research, wargaming and experimentation can come together here to provide solutions to the fleet.
“NPS is developing the leaders the Navy needs for the future force,” said Lescher. “I saw students who are developing tangible solutions to key operational problems, which are needed in the Fleet.
It’s the hands-on, research-based education they get here are NPS which builds the competencies we need for an increasingly technical all-domain naval force as called for in the Tri-Service Maritime Strategy.”
According to NWSI Director retired Navy Capt. Jeff Kline, it was not just a privilege to inform the VCNO on relevant education and research, but also to see NPS students presenting on how they’ve applied their education to warfighting challenges.
“[Lescher] certainly witnessed our officers applying their education to their profession,” said Kline. “NPS is at its best when our student-officers are the primary presenters. Today, he saw NPS at its best.”