2,000 Miles of Hybrid System Evaluation on ‘Hotbuck’ Unit
BAE Systems reports completion of 2,000 miles of tests of the hybrid electric driveline for the U.S. Army’s Ground Combat Vehicle on its “Hotbuck” rig in Santa Clara, Calif. The tests indicate that a hybrid GCV will have greater agility, acceleration and maneuverability than a comparable mechanical system, and that the hybrid vehicle will use up to 20% less fuel than a conventionally powered GCV.
BAE describes Hotbuck as “a stationary, state-of-the-art test stand that simulates real-life environments and terrain and puts actual miles on the HED (hybrid electric drive) system.” The GCV testing was completed four months ahead of schedule, BAE says.
“This testing achievement is a significant advancement in the overall GCV program. With actual hardware to show, this puts the BAE Systems team ahead of schedule both now and in the next phase of the program, saving the customer development time and money,” BAE armored combat systems VP Mark Signorelli said in a release.
Fewer Fuel Convoys, Battlefield Power
Advantages of a hybrid GCV to the Army, BAE says, include a reduction in overall costs and the number of fuel convoys, availability of electrical power “to incorporate new battlefield technology for the next 30 to 40 years,” and 40% fewer parts than a comparable mechanical drive system, requiring less maintenance and decreasing vehicle lifetime cost.
HED components for BAE’s GCV incorporated in Hotbuck include the vehicle’s traction drive thermal and systems, engines, generators, controllers and software. The Santa Clara trials “precisely replicated conditions at two well-known military test tracks,” BAE says.
“Our primary objective was to test our hybrid electric technology over time against realistic environments,” Signorelli said. “The successful completion of the testing is a testament to the quality and maturity of the technology.”
BAE is teamed with Northrop Grumman to develop the vehicle, according to the firm’s GCV website. The hybrid GCV uses lithium ion batteries from Saft.
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Source: BAE Systems with Fleets & Fuels follow-up