What's next, a battery-powered tank
? Well, no, but how does a fuel cell-powered M1 Abrams
sound instead? The U.S. Army is currently exploring the idea of using fuel cell technology to bring additional electrical power to the M1 Abrams battle tank. The idea is simple: an on-board fuel cell would take JP8 diesel fuel
, extract the hydrogen, run it through the fuel cell and generate auxiliary power for the tank. The electricity generated by the fuel cell would power vital on-board computers, defense systems and additional equipment. As Steven Eick, an engineer at the Tank Automotive Research Center said:
Currently it [fuel cell technology] is only being tested in a lab but it is being designed for the Abrams. Our goal is to generate more on board power to help support radios and other equipment.
Eick also suggests that the Army is working on additional fuel cell applications for non-combat vehicles. From stealthy Humvees
, to fuel cell-powered tanks, even the military can't escape the drive towards a greener future.