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Edition: Fri, January 30, 2009
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TODAY'S FOCUS

Fuel Efficiency Ground Vehicle Demonstrator (FED) Program

What is it?

The FED Program seeks to identify high payoff technologies to attain the most fuel-efficient vehicle designs possible. The U.S. Army Research Development and Engineering Command's Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) is leading the effort to bring together leading government and industry experts seeking to provide military vehicle technology that will reduce battlefield fuel consumption while maintaining operational performance. Government engineers are working side-by-side with the automotive industry's leading innovators to identify and integrate emerging fuel-efficient technologies that could be applied to next generation military trucks and other Department of Defense wheeled vehicle programs.

What has the Army done?

In October 2008, twenty-five industry, academia and government experts met for the first FED working group meeting to brainstorm and evaluate over 100 technologies that have potential to increase fuel economy. The M1114 High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle at 15,400 pounds gross vehicle weight will be used as the baseline for comparing fuel efficiency and performance. In December 2008, viable technology combinations were developed into six discrete system level preliminary conceptual architectures for further modeling and simulation studies. Work began this month on power-train systems modeling and simulation to predict fuel efficiency and mobility performance.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

The modeling and simulation studies will assess the conceptual architectures against the following attributes: grade ability; speed on grade; acceleration; speed; vehicle control; range; braking; payload and electric power source requirements. In April 2009, the analyses results will be reviewed at the final working group session which will determine which concept(s) will be recommended to the FED Executive Steering Committee before proceeding into a design phase.

Why is this important to the Army?

Fuel efficiency has a ripple effect from tactical operations back through the logistics chain. Greater fuel efficiency at the platform level reduces delivery demand and vulnerability of logistics operations and personnel to hostile fire. Increasing fuel costs driven by unstable foreign supplies and global market competition for resources drives Army vehicle development strategies to increased fuel efficiency.

Resources:

U.S Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) Fuel Efficiency Ground Vehicle Demonstrator (FED) Web site

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