US Military FCT contract for High Speed Amphibians
By Mike Hanlon
June 18, 2006
June 19, 2006 It was only a matter of time really – Gibbs Technologies’ High Speed Amphibian (HSA) technology has wowed the world with the Aquada sports car, Humdinga AWD and QuadSki amphibians so sooner or later it was bound to come under the scrutiny of the most technologically adventurous fighting force on the planet. Today it was announced that Gibbs has won a US Department of Defence (DOD) Foreign Comparative Test contract to evaluate its existing HSA technology for military purposes. Founder Alan Gibbs said of winning the contract, “it’s a major milestone for the company because we have solved a problem which has beset every major General since Alexander the Great.”
“HSA technology could have a profound impact on the global military community", continued Gibbs, " however it also offers enormous non-military potential for today’s peace keeping forces and disaster relief agencies.”
The US Navy will initially test the military viability of Gibbs’ exciting technology to ascertain its capability and operational limits. The vehicles being evaluated comprise:
Aquada, an amphibian car which set the water speed record for amphibian craft, as well as the world record for crossing the English Channel
Humdinga, a five-seater, four-wheel drive utility vehicle capable of travelling up to 128 kph on land and 72 kph on water
Quadski, the recently launched high-speed amphibian quad bike.
Although initially developed for the consumer market, Gibbs Technologies does have the capability to adapt its unique HSA technology to create bespoke military applications. For example, it could provide the Navy’s special units with a unique capability because no other army or navy in the world currently has a high-speed amphibian personnel carrier. HSA technology offers a highly effective and very efficient solution to traditional problems posed by land-sea borders, such as beachhead landings and/or crossing waterways and lakes. The highly versatile high-speed products can enable new mission profiles for a wide range of attack and defensive activities.
The DOD’s interest was initially stimulated by the Aquada’s global acclaim – for both the unique amphibian technology and its subsequent record setting achievements. The subsequent unveiling of the Humdinga, with its increased personnel carrying capacity and enhanced performance and the high-speed Quadski reinforced the potential Gibbs’ HSA technology offered military strategists.
Gibbs Technologies’ HSA experts will work closely with the DOD validation team and will lead any subsequent application development process if deemed necessary.
Gibbs Technologies is a New Zealand and British engineering company specialising in the design of High Speed Amphibian (HSA) technology. Gibbs Technologies was established in New Zealand in 1996 by entrepreneur Alan Gibbs. Joined by Englishman Neil Jenkins in 1999, Gibbs Technologies has gone on to be the world leader in researching and developing the concept of High Speed Amphibian Technology, filing 60 patents relating to the technology.
Enabling a vehicle to reach speeds of 100mph on land and in excess of 30mph on water, High Speed Amphibian technology is at the heart of the Gibbs Technologies family of vehicles: the Aquada, the Humdinga, and the Quadski. Gibbs Technologies expects to license High Speed Amphibious technology to other manufacturers for use in a diverse range of applications, both private and commercial.