A.N.T. Aid Necessities Transporter concept vehicle


January 4, 2011

The initial inspiration for the A.N.T came from wanting to design a better vehicle for disaster relief

The initial inspiration for the A.N.T came from wanting to design a better vehicle for disaster relief

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A multi-purpose vehicle capable of delivering emergency housing and supplies to disaster areas then rapidly returning to base ready for another mission – that is the concept behind the Aid Necessities Transporter (A.N.T.). The idea takes inspiration from it's namesake in the insect world – creating more than just a unique concept vehicle but an entirely new aid distribution system. The A.N.T has been designed to traverse rough terrain that would be impossible for conventional trucks to navigate, delivering supply pods and temporary shelter to disaster stricken communities. The vehicle then transforms itself into a low-profile form for a swift return to headquarters.

The concept was developed by Melbourne (Australia) designer Bryan Lee for his graduate design project while studying Industrial Design at Monash University in 2009. Lee told Gizmag his initial inspiration came from wanting to design a better vehicle for disaster relief.

“At the beginning of 2009 I took notice of the increasing numbers of natural disasters due to global warming,” he said. “From this, I decided that I would design a vehicle the address this problem however through a different direction. Instead of addressing the issue by preventing global warming, I thought that we will need some solutions to address problems when natural disasters hit. This is where my path began which led me to research on organizations such as the United Nations.”

While researching for his project the student designer came across a documentary that changed the direction of the concept.

“It was about ants and their colony,” Lee told Gizmag. “I was fascinated with their aesthetics, ability and system they run on which led me to believe that they are truly natures transporters. One of the biggest inspirations I took from ants were how they transported their food back to their nest. In groups. From this, instead of using the conventional way organizations deliver supplies all at once by land, I decided to create a new system where although it carries slightly less, the A.N.T's will travel back and forth from HQ's to the disaster zone delivering supplies faster and earlier.”

Just like their insect namesakes, the A.N.T in Transport mode would head towards the disaster stricken area traveling in groups. On arrival the vehicle would quickly deploy the supply unit, which doubles as a temporary housing module. The A.N.T would then rotate its cockpit section 90 degrees downwards transforming to Rapid mode allowing the swarm of A.N.T.s to quickly travel back to headquarters ready to load up another supply unit.

The A.N.T employs a number of intelligent design features that allow for swift aid distribution. These include six independent electric in-wheel motors, a large unique all-terrain suspension system that also allows for rapid loading and deployment of supply units, rotational hydraulics for transformation from Transport to Rapid modes, and a well thought out supply unit design that doubles as temporary housing.

Lee graduated from Monash University in Australia with Bachelor of Industrial Design with honours in 2009. He now works at Ford Australia in the Visualization department.


Where are the fuel tanks?

Rune Winsevik

wow, that would make for an awesome camper too!

Facebook User

how do we know where to store these vehicles,, in the Caribbean, SE Asia, Europe, USA ?or do we have heavy lifting helicopters waiting with them ?, not realistic I am afraid



I like the rapid all-terrain deployment concept. How about designing the payload within a standard 40-foot or 80-foot cargo container, found everywhere, and interchangeable with other transport vehicles including ships, trucks, and planes?


Re ANT DESIGN. The chassis of this vehicle should be designed to accomodate a 20 ft container & have a Hydro lift set to load & off load containers. This would be most practical as most bulk stuff is on pallet loaded container bases or loaded container. The truck then loads/unloads in 10 minutes or so making for quick turn around & less wait time. Regards John McManus

John M

Why bother blogging this? It doesn\'t make any sense at all? Somebody drew a pretty picture of a truck with isn\'t structurally sound, with no ground clearance that doesn\'t actually appear to have any functional suspension, while delivering a proprietary and poorly shaped load handling unit.

Maybe you could blog about the fact that REAL solutions to this problem already in existance aren\'t bought by anyone other than militaries.

Go blog about the HEMTT, or any of those Oshkosh families, the UNIMOG, or the ACTROS.

Maybe start a campaign to broaden the US Army\'s LHU system into a civilian system for rapid delivery of aid to areas which need ISO Containers (proper Load Container, not fantasy) to areas without proper load handling equipment in remote areas.

Alternately, maybe you could put this idiot in contact with the one from Mercedes who had the idea about growing a car with his drugs.


Drew - Maybe you should watch the video a little more closely. It has a fully-functioning suspension which would be most likely hydraulic. The design is very similar to an ACE (if you\'re familiar with a HEMTT than maybe an ACE too?), although the weakness to such a suspension is structural integrity. It can and has been done robustly but at great expense to weight.

I concur though, let\'s start with something like this that grabs standard shipping containers first. Then we can branch out and make interesting expandable living quarters or MASH units out of the standard shipping container form factor. Now THAT would be great.


By some of the above comments, it sounds like someone\'s been passing the hatorade. I like this concept. The UN doesn\'t deserve this vehicle. Ministries, for example, working together in a network of overseas transport and destination routes would put vehicles like these to good use on the ground. It would have been nice to delve into the powerplant. What does it run on?

Facebook User

Blixdevil. I didn\'t look at the video because youtube is blocked at my work, however that doesn\'t change any of the criticisms that I\'ve posted.

Hydropneumatic suspension is only really used on vehicles which have a very regular service regime (some armoured vehicles and family cars) and Rotary dampers are notorious for having exceedingly high failure rates, so, while I haven\'t worked wth an ACE before, i\'d suspect that they are high maintenance for an armoured vehicle, let alone a Logistics vehicle. I\'d also suspect that the ACE\'s suspension has at least some help from conventional torsion bars underneath to reduce the hydraulic loads.

The big problem is that the reason that Logistics trucks have their current shape is simple, because they carry ISOs, ISOs are designed to be 2.5m wide because thats the widest legal vehicle allowed on the roads in most countries and pallets are all 1.1m squared or 1.2x1m to fit in them. Eliminating the flat floor at 2.5m wide means you can no longer use palletised loads, which eliminates pretty much all of what a non bulk handling logistics truck would be doing in that type of environment.

2.5m wide flat based loads mean that the tyres have to be under the load, which means that you have to fit the tyre envelope plus the maximum suspension travel, plus the maximum deck deflection under the ISO. Because your off road capability is at least in some part defined by the diameter of your tyres that means you\'re stuck with a HEMTT/ACTROS/UNIMOG design unless you use tracks, which bring their own problems.

As far as emergency housing in ISOs or hospitals in ISOs, I believe that a number of militaries have very well planned hospital facility transport systems which are containerised and on top of that, Gizmag actually had an expandable ISO emergency shelter on a while back, made by an Australian company if I remember correctly.

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