NATO partner tours DLA Energy petroleum lab

By Connie Braesch DLA Energy Public Affairs

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Representatives from the Netherlands Ministry of Defense visited Defense Logistics Agency Energy Europe & Africa’s Petroleum Laboratory to learn about its fuel testing capabilities, Oct. 15. 

Netherlands Army Lt. Col. Marc Verwer, commander of Fuel, Lubricants and Chemicals Department, along with Willem Zijderveld and Nicolaas van der Veen, managers of the Technical Center of Expertise for Fuels and Petroleum, Oil and Lubricant Products, toured the Rhine Ordnance Barracks facility in Germany to gain a better understanding of how aviation and ground fuels are tested for quality and purity. 

As one of five DLA Energy labs worldwide, the facility receives approximately 2,000 fuel samples each year including routine quality surveillance, investigations of possible contamination as well as testing for secured fuels. 

“The Royal Netherlands visit was a great opportunity to not only continue building face-to-face bonds with one of our key partners in the region but to learn alongside them,” said Sam J. Fedele, DLA Energy Europe & Africa logistics management specialist. 

Chemist Elena Van Meter explained that the Dutch military uses commercial contracted laboratories to test their fuel samples and often experience delays when samples are lost and specialized testing equipment is not readily available. 

“The visit brought to light ideas about how we can bridge gaps and overcome challenges they face,” Van Meter said. 

Fedele, a member of the DLA Energy International Agreements team, said the visit helps the two agencies work toward mutually beneficial goals. 

“The visit helps reinforce our cooperative efforts as we work towards a new implementing arrangement to document fuel transactions and find ways to mutually support one another through the use of Acquisition Cross Servicing Agreements,” Fedele said. 

The Netherlands is one of 8 NATO countries who have established fuel exchange agreements with DLA Energy. In August, they participated in the 15th annual Fuel Exchange Forum in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany.

“Knowing the needs and capabilities of our partners, customers and allies is a valuable thing,” said DLA Energy Europe & Africa chemist Dr. Elmar Mohrhardt. “By showing our Netherlands partners the capabilities of our lab we get better in our job.”