Propulsion System Demonstrator Powered By GE Gas Turbine

A General Electric (GE) LM120 marine gas turbine has been installed aboard the propulsion system demonstrator (PSD) vehicle for the U.S. Marine Corps' Advanced Amphibious Assault program. The turbine reportedly was successful in powering the vehicle during waterborne testing.

Tests conducted by the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Carderock Division, reportedly proved that an amphibious vehicle can travel at over 20 miles per hour (mph) in the water and also be able to perform well on land. Reported speeds of 33 mph were recorded, compared to a water speed of 8 mph for the current operational amphibious vehicle, the AAV7-A1.

The entire propulsion system consists of a Cummins VTA903 diesel engine and the LM120 gas turbine. The diesel powers the vehicle on land. In high-speed operations in the water, the vehicle is propelled by four water jets, with the diesel powering one and the LM120 gas turbine driving the other three. Further tests are expected to take place at the Marine Corps Amphibious Vehicle Test Branch, Camp Pendelton, Calif., and should take six months to complete.

The LM120 gas turbine is derived from the T700/CT7 family of turboshaft and turboprop engines and is rated horsepower at 1,650 to 2,000 shaft horsepower. More than 6,000 of the T700/CT7 engines have been installed on helicopters, regional airliners and military transports. For more information about the LM120 gas turbine,

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