Specialists from OSTARA, a Lithuanian company, are attempting to build a fast rough terrain troop transport vehicle with a hybrid propulsion system.
The new vehicle, called the Krampus, is intended to provide secrecy, quick and versatile transportation over demanding terrain in order to meet the light-mobility needs of light infantry and special operations forces.
Krampus will be able to transport a maximum payload of more than 300 kg and up to two infantrymen in support of expeditionary missions. It will offer high higher speeds over rough terrains and, above all, have enemy detection avoidance capabilities.
The Krampus vehicle will be powered by a hybrid power electric motor coupled with high-performance batteries. The batteries are remotely-powered with a type 2 charging bay or inside-mounted diesel generator.
The vehicle has lower acoustic and thermal signatures than internal combustion vehicles; this will substantially increase the security level to the operators. A lower signature will deliver military advantages.
As noted by the company, the hybrid diesel vehicle’s fundamental advantage is an all-encompassing extended range, reduced fuel utilization, and a diesel generator for battery charging that can utilize diesel and JP8 fuel.
Because of its electric drive, the buggy can drive high in the mountains where there isn’t sufficient oxygen for an internal combustion motor, as well as in places where internal combustion engines are hazardous to use, for example, caverns, caves, and so forth. Using only electric power, the cart can drive up to 200 km.
Right now, the hybrid Krampus is in its final assembly stage. Controller programming and BMS coordination are being performed. Once Krampus is finished, work on designing and manufacturing an autonomous buggy, based on the Krampus concept, will commence.
The U.S. government is also interested in low-signature motor vehicles for special forces. The shadowy DARPA research division has launched a competition to design a special forces-spec motorcycle. Now, the two finalists are on display at the National Defense Industrial Association’s Special Operations Forces Industry Conference in Tampa, FL. Both bikes are quite a lot different than your average Kawasaki.
The two bikes, the Logos Silent Hawk and the LSA Autonomy Nightmare (shown above), blend dramatic versatility with stealth characteristics. Their gas engines can reportedly run using either spark or compression ignition. This means they can burn just about anything – gasoline, jet fuel, propane, you name it. Alex Dzwill, an engineer with Logos, told Defense One that it could even “theoretically” run on lipids, like olive oil. That’s good news for special forces operating behind enemy lines, where supplies are low. Out of gas? Just raid the local shawarma joint.
But why bikes? They don’t exactly offer a lot of protection in combat, after all. The idea, as Popular Science explains, is that the motorcycles won’t necessarily enter combat – this is not a modern version of horse cavalry. Instead, they can be dropped in with special operators, who can use them to get to places quicker and quieter than traditional vehicles.