Picture of the Day: Combat Hovercraft
The Landing Craft Air Cushion (LCAC) is a class of air-cushion vehicle (hovercraft) used as landing craft by the United States Navy’s Assault Craft Units and the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF). They transport weapons systems, equipment, cargo and personnel of the assault elements of the Marine Air/Ground Task Force both from ship to shore and across the beach.
Concept design of the present day LCAC began in the early 1970s and was first deployed in 1982. The LCAC is capable of carrying a 60-75 ton payload (such as M-1 Tanks) at high speeds and air cushion technology allows this vehicle to reach more than 70% of the world’s coastline, while only about 15% of that coastline is accessible by conventional landing craft.
Propulsion: Legacy: 4-Allied-Signal TF-40B gas turbines (2 propulsion / 2 lift); 16,000 hp sustained; 2-shrouded reversible pitch airscrews; 4-dbl-entry fans, centrifugal or mixed flow (lift)
Length: 87 feet 11 inches (26.4 meters).
Beam: 47 feet (14.3 meters).
Displacement: 87.2 tons (88.60 metric tons) light; 170-182 tons (172.73 – 184.92 metric tons) full load.
Speed: 40+ knots (46+ mph; 74.08 kph) with full load.
Range: 200 miles at 40 kts with payload / 300 miles at 35 kts with payload.
Load: 60 tons / 75 ton overload (54.43/68.04 tonnes)
Armament: 2 – 12.7mm MGs. Gun mounts will support: M-2HB .50 cal machine gun; Mk-19 Mod3 40mm grenade launcher; M-60 machine gun.
Electronics: Radars, Navigation: Marconi LN 66; I band / Sperry Marine Bridge Master E.