Popular Science

August 22, 2012

Video: DARPA’s New Amphibious Tank Prototype Drives On Water

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DARPA’s Tactically Expandable Maritime Platform (TEMP) program is a wide-ranging effort to pack standard ISO shipping containers with technologies that can assist during humanitarian disasters or aid military in solving other unconventional, international problems (like piracy). Essentially DARPA wants a modular means to quickly turn any ship into a technology-laden base of operations that can quickly execute ship-to-ship or ship-to-shore operations. We’ve seen the ship-based portion of this before. We’re now seeing the ship-to-shore piece.

Meet CAAT (for Captive Air Amphibious Transporter). The prototype vehicle is basically like a tank with treads made out of air-filled pontoons, enabling it to roll over water (and obstacles in the water) with Abrams-like efficiency and continue its forward march once it hits shore. Perhaps the coolest thing about the video below: this is a 1/5 scale demonstrator.

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