Abraham Gubler

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18 March 2008
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Potential of Aerostats For The Recovery Of Disabled Main Battle Tanks and Other Heavy Military Vehicles And Equipment

This report describes the investigation of the potential use of aerostats for the recovery of damaged heavy military vehicles such as Main Battle Tanks and other heavy military or relief equipment deployed from a Sea Base. A capability gap was identified for vehicles within the Marine Corp and Army inventory. High value vehicles that will need to be recovered but couldn’t be lifted by the heavy lift helicopter CH-53 were identified. Past and current aerostats were researched and the most suitable type, which satisfied most of the key requirements, was identified. The optimum configuration consists of an un-powered ‘air-crane’ balloon supporting the payload over the balloon’s envelope skin through appropriate rigging. The balloon would be towed to its destination by a helicopter, land vehicle or surface vessel.



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