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A boiler is simply a pressurized device, that allows either water or steam pressure to build up and turn a turbine or shaft, which in turn makes a propeller spin. The Modern US Navy Boiler Technician is an expert in propulsion and hydraulics; they are the personnel and Servicemembers that work to keep the Navy mobile and moving forward both at sea and in the air.
The United States Navy has a large number of seagoing vessels, from one of the large 13 aircraft carriers with more than 5,000 crewmembers, to the very smallest of small boats. Through them all, they require equipment that produces and utilizes steam and steam driven electric equipment, which propels the vessels forward through the water and makes the US Navy one of the fastest and most flexible Naval forces in the World.
In addition to working in propulsion the US Navy boiler technician works with piping and storage of fuel, potable water supplies, and other liquid materials.
Storage of such materials can be a science all to itself, and the US Navy boiler specialist is a resident expert on the operations of pumps, boilers, piping, and related equipment.
Only by the availability of trained US Navy boiler specialists can the operational readiness and performance tempo that the US Navy is known for be maintained.