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U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center
TARDEC LOGO 051509 LargeOnBlack.jpg
Active 1946 – present[1]
Country United States
Branch U.S. Army
Type Research and Development
Garrison/HQ Detroit Arsenal, Michigan

The United States Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC), located in Warren, Michigan, is the US Armed Forces' research and development facility for advanced technology in ground systems.[2] It is part of the Research, Development and Engineering Command (RDECOM), a major subordinate command of the United States Army Materiel Command. TARDEC shares its facilities with the U.S. Army TACOM Life Cycle Management Command (TACOM LCMC). Current technology focus areas include Ground Vehicle Power and Mobility (GVPM), Ground System Survivability and Force Protection Technology, among others.[3]


It features a number of research laboratories including a:

  • Visual Perception Laboratory
  • Laser Protection Laboratory
  • Crew Station Systems Integration Laboratory
  • Robotic Systems Integration Laboratory
  • Ground Vehicle Simulation Laboratory – ride motion simulator, pintle motion based simulator, crew station/turret motion based simulator and several vehicle “shaker” facilities
  • High Performance Computing Laboratory – supports virtual prototyping and design development of combat vehicles and improves virtual reality capabilities
  • Next Generation Software Laboratory
  • Water Laboratory
  • Petroleum Laboratory – researches properties and durability of a wide-range of fuel including JP-8, diesel, hydraulic fluids and lubricants
  • Bridging Simulation Laboratory – Located at Selfridge Air National Guard base, this facility features computer controlled load test areas with automated data acquisition capability for structural testing of bridging systems. Lab capabilities include static and dynamic structural load application for structural and fatigue testing.
  • Propulsion Test Laboratory
  • Physical and Rapid Prototyping Laboratory
  • Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Center – researches a variety of alternative vehicle structural materials, including composite materials
  • Center for Ground Vehicle Development and Integration (CGVDI)

Fuel Efficient Ground Vehicle Demonstrator[]

TARDEC is designing fuel efficient vehicles that integrate a wide variety of technologies to demonstrate the state-of-the-art in fuel efficient vehicle design.

FED Logo.jpg

FED Bravo on display in April 2012.

The FED's objectives include:

  • Identifying and assessing technologies that support increasing fuel efficiency and reducing fuel consumption for light tactical vehicles.
  • Developing and assessing fuel efficient tactical vehicle concepts that compare favorably and achieve the same operational capabilities of a Humvee.
  • Developing, fabricating, and testing two system-level demonstrators that incorporate fuel-efficient technologies. The two demonstrator vehicles are named "Alpha" and "Bravo".
  • Training the next generation of government engineers in fuel efficiency processes and tools.

FED "Alpha" completed fabrication in October 2010. FED Alpha is powered by a Super/Turbocharged 200 Hp 4.5L Inline 4-Cylinder Diesel Engine optimized for fuel efficiency. Alpha also includes other fuel saving subsystems such as an integrated starter generator, lightweight hull/frame, low rolling resistance tires, driver feedback systems, solar panels, low-drag brakes, superfinishing of driveline components, and other technologies. FED Alpha will undergo performance testing starting in early 2011.

FED "Bravo" is currently finishing its detailed design phase and will begin fabrication in early 2011. Bravo will have a road-coupled parallel hybrid powertrain. FED Bravo is scheduled to begin performance testing in late 2011.

Electric vehicles[]

TARDEC has acquired PowerGenix NiZn batteries for military hybrid electric vehicles.

See also[]



  1. "History of TARDEC and predecessors". 6 November 2009. Retrieved 21 May 2011. 
  2. TARDEC Home Page
  3. "Technology Focus Areas". 22 February 2011. Retrieved 21 May 2011. 


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