Vanguard

Power and Performance and Speed at your Command

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he Vanguard is an advanced variant of the Pioneer Mk3.1 modified for Military Applications.

The superstructure is heavily modified for this demanding role with ballistic protection to the raised control module and other critical areas. The removable central cabin doors and roof provide top loading cargo capability. Additional options such as;

  • Galley
  • Fresh Hot and Cold Water Systems
  • Refrigeration
  • Marine Toilet(s) and
  • Alternative Sources of Electric Power offering extensive volume storage

These added features and more, are among the many options the ‘Vanguard’ is capable of supporting, providing an exceptional platform for the most discerning military operator to rely upon for their strategic planning and armament. All of this in a versatile but resilient package which has removable sides and is easily transportable.

The design of the Vanguard utilises modern technologies of design and equipment to achieve exceptional performance while retaining a simplistic approach to construction and maintainability. High powered twin engine/twin lift system/twin reversible thrust propellers provide redundancy, performance and unsurpassed manoeuvrability uncommonly found in hovercraft of this class. The IFA propellers can be crew adjusted for improved performance or economy and provide full steering control during reverse travel which is essential for parking into or exiting tight places or turning 360 degrees ‘on the spot’. Twin propellers provide control and redundancies which are not possible to achieve with a single propeller.

All of the AirLift Hovercraft designs utilise fully pressurised bag and finger skirts which are truly amphibious.

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Technical Specifications

Dimensions When Hovering Transporting Dimensions
Length 12.25 m 11.80 m
Width 5.87 m 2.96 m
Height 3.23 m 2.36 m
Cockpit length 2.17 m
Cockpit width 2.00 m (@ bottom of windows)
Wave height clearance 1.5 m at a pitch of 18 metres or more
Normal operating speed 46 to 55 km/hr (25 to 30 kts) on smooth water
Hump speed time Lightweight in 3 – 5 seconds.Heavyweight in 5 – 8 seconds
Accommodation The control cabin is accessed from the main cabin by a vertical hinged door. The control cabin incorporates laminated ballistic protection glass to NIJ type 2.The main cabin is accessed by 4- gull-wing doors, each horizontally hinged and easily removable. The main cabin windows are polycarbonate glazed aluminium frames hinging inwards and upwards to facilitate the firing of weapons from within.
Payload (for a water-start) 3,300 kg normal. Overload capable to 3,800 kg with reduced performance.
Engine (s) 2 x Gale Banks 866T diesels with NATO certified heavy duty rating of 253 kW @ 2,800 rpm.
Higher ratings available for short time if required.
Endurance (good conditions) Normally 11 hours or 330 nautical miles in good conditions.
Optionally 20 hours or 600 nautical miles if using ballast fuel.
Maximum duration is about 36 hours in loiter mode using all fuel.
Skirt type Pressurised bag tapered from front to back with larger sections at the front for improved wave clearance. All fingers are separate and detachable.
Lift System Two sets (port set and starboard set) of co-axial fans direct coupled to hydraulic motors. Under each set is a non-return valve to prevent backflow when either set is operating alone. Each set alone capable of providing adequate lift.
Thrust system 2 x IFA propellers featuring 5x wide blades x 1400mm dia. Capable to go from full forward to full reverse <6 seconds while running at maximum rotational speed.
Lift System Two sets (port set and starboard set) of co-axial fans direct coupled to hydraulic motors. Under each set is a non-return valve to prevent backflow when either set is operating alone. Each set alone capable of providing adequate lift.
Steering By 3-power assisted rudders fitted behind each of the thrust ducts.
(Total of 6-rudders). Steering assistance at low speed and in the reverse direction is managed by changing the propeller pitch to give differential or reverse thrust from the propellers and steering in reverse motion. This allows the P35M1 to pivot on the spot and steer while going backwards to provide exceptional control capability, particularly when manoeuvring with crosswinds in tight places.
Dynamic Pitch & Roll Control Dynamic control by 4 – power assisted elevators fitted behind each thrust duct (total of 8-elevators).
Static [weight shift] Pitch & Roll Control By transferring fuel load between the front and rear ballast tanks. Note there are limits to this system depending on the fuel load available to shift.
Instrumentation & Displays Instrumentation by combination of analogue type displays and flat screen displays.
Controls Machinery monitoring and control is byJ1939 compliant CANBus networks. Navigation and power distribution is by a NMEA 2000®compliant CANBus network.
Navigation & Communications Standard equipment includes: Magnetic Compass 70 mm, VHF transceiver and matching antenna (NMEA2000 compliant), SIMRAD GPS with co-ordinate display to radio and navigation system, SIMRAD Chart Plotter (Including World maps), SIMRAD X-Band Digital radar overlay on the chart plotter, Man Overboard System distress signal broadcasting position, AIRMAR PB150 weather station with wind velocity, temperature, air-pressure, apparent and true wind direction indication.

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