General Motors aims to solve some of the toughest transportation challenges created by natural disasters, complex logistics environments and global conflicts. The company’s Silent Utility Rover Universal Superstructure (SURUS) is a flexible fuel-cell electric platform with autonomous capabilities and it could be adapted for military use.
SURUS leverages GM’s newest Hydrotec fuel-cell system, autonomous capability and truck chassis components to deliver high-performance, zero-emission propulsion to minimise logistical burdens and reduce human exposure to harm. Benefits include quiet and odour-free operation, off-road mobility, field configuration, instantaneous high torque, exportable power generation, water generation and quick refuelling times.
Fuel-cell technology represents a key piece of General Motors’ zero emission strategy. It offers a solution that can scale to larger vehicles with large payload requirements and operate over longer distances. SURUS was designed to form a foundation for a family of commercial vehicle solutions that leverages a single propulsion system integrated into a common chassis. The SURUS platform is equally well-suited for adaptation to military environments where users can take advantage of flexible energy resources, field configurability and improved logistical characteristics.
SURUS will deliver highly mobile autonomous capability and agility in unpredictable terrain. Operating multiple vehicles in a leader-follower configuration could reduce manpower needed. For future potential military uses, the system’s inherent low heat signature and quiet operation offer benefits in environments to reduce detection and risks.
The SURUS platform leverages GM’s vast experience in fuel-cell technology, high-voltage batteries and electric drive systems, autonomous driving and vehicle manufacturing. The platform’s features include two advanced electric drive units, four-wheel steering, a ithium-ion battery system, a Gen 2 fuel-cell system, a hydrogen storage system capable of more than 640 kilometres of range, advanced propulsion power electronics, GM truck chassis components and an advanced suspension.
Check out the Chevrolet Colorado ZH2 fuel-cell truck made for the US Army.