and other vehicles the U.S. Army is using in Iraq for troop
and equipment transport are aging gas-guzzlers, according
to a study published by the National Academy of Sciences, AFP reports.
study, conducted by the academy's National Research Council
at the Pentagon's request, proposed use of more modern high-strength
steels to reduce weight without reducing protection, as well
as aluminum and magnesium alloys to replace steel altogether
in some components.
army, the study noted, currently has a fleet of 250,000 trucks,
ranging from the light-duty Humvee that replaced the Jeep
during the 1991 Gulf War to heavy-duty flatbed equipment
transporters and tractor-trailer units, along with 110,000
fuel consumption also takes a financial and logistical toll,
and limits the Army's agility," said the report. "Fuel
makes up 70 percent of the tonnage shipped to a battle zone,
and one armored division alone consumes 600,000 gallons per
fuel efficiency could reduce not only the amount of fuel
transported but also the numbers of personnel and equipment
needed to do so," the report said.
Army's truck fleet "is aging and becoming less effective
over time," it went on.
of these vehicles are kept in service for decades and left
unsheltered between missions, increasing their maintenance
costs and diminishing their performance.
and metal-matrix composites could reduce the weight of braking
systems without sacrificing performance," the report