It is no secret that tanks are powerhouses on the battlefield. However, though they are intimidating machines of war, they are not exactly perfect. One of the complaints that soldiers and field units had about tanks was the fact that all of the electrical systems and anything else that required power were drawing it from the main engine. This is where a military auxiliary power unit
There were several other issues besides potentially draining the main battery. By constantly running the engine, the tanks were going through quite a bit of fuel. There was an issue of the engines producing an obvious heat signature to enemy combatants. This placed the soldiers in great peril. A tactic called “silent overwatch” was also very difficult to perform with the engine running. They could be silent but they were devoid of electricity if they were.
Here Comes The APU
While the military temporarily settled on batteries to aid them with their power concern, they quickly realized that this would not be enough. They started to look into a military auxiliary power unit. The problem they faced was that it needed to be able to fit into very close quarters. Most tanks only allowed 12 inches or less of headroom with which the designers could work. This was solved with the skills of different teams of engineers. They worked hard to ensure the military could get the power they needed.
Auxiliary power units work not only on tanks but on all kinds of military vehicles including trucks and helicopters as well.