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Defense Firm Looks To Resurrect Old Concept: Tank Boats

Indonesian-based defense firm PT Lundin is working on resurrecting a concept not seen for decades: tank boats.

The CX18 Tank Boat, produced by North Sea Boats, a company owned by PT Lundin, looks like something straight out of G.I. Joe, Popular Science reports.

The 60-foot long mock-up vessel can carry up to 20 Navy SEALs and be outfitted with 7.62 machine guns or 30-mm light cannons. Landing troops on target shores might become that much easier, given that the boat packs a punch and could provide significant cover fire. The craft allows for tank cannons to be mounted in the turret. If needed, automated heavy machine guns can be placed on top of the main cabin’s tank turret. Also included is an inflatable boat.

Back in the 1930s, the Soviets engineered river boats with tank turrets and employed them during skirmishes on the Black and Baltic seas. During World War II, the U.S. Navy tried a similar design which quickly failed because the turrets proved too heavy and the engines too weak.

But John Lundin, president of PT Lundin, thinks that the concept is feasible, given decades of innovation in engine design. For now, the idea remains relegated to the drawing board, but PT Lundin appears to be intent on producing the craft and has started marketing operations through brochures.

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