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Title: Tracks versus wheels in soft soil and snow
Authors: Freitag, Dean R.
Janosi, Zoltan J.
Keywords: Trafficability
Tracklaying vehicles
Publisher: U.S. Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station.
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Series/Report no.: Miscellaneous paper;4-651
Abstract: Summary: Each time a new vehicle is proposed the choice of running gear can only be made after a careful consideration of factors such as mission, initial cost, suspension vulnerability, obstacle performance, ridability, fuel economy, reliability maintenance cost, and soft-soil performance. Of these several factors the most influential one dictating the use of tracks over wheels is that of soft-soil performance. A detailed examination of the latter aspect reveals that most wheeled vehicles used at the present time have less mobility than tracked vehicles of the same weight. If the mobility of either type of vehicles is to be improved, designs having contact pressure as low as possible must be developed. As far as wheeled vehicles are concerned, this can be achieved by increasing the number of wheels or by increasing the size of the tires, or by a combination thereof. The analysis seems to indicate that it is more effective to increase the tire size than the number of wheels. The analysis also indicates that the smaller tire sizes are not capable of providing extremely good mobility for heavy wheeled vehicles. While light vehicles could be equipped with available tires that would make them competitive with tracks on soft ground, the analysis indicates that the tracked vehicles have higher pull/weight ratios on firm soil.
Description: Miscellaneous paper
Rights: Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Appears in Collections:Miscellaneous Paper

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