USMC Amphibian Assault Vehicle-7
The U.S. Marine Corps AAV7A1 Amphibian Assault Vehicle was originally designated the LVT-7 or LVTP-7. It is a full-tracked, amphibious vehicle, providing an over-the-beach capability for landing troops and material through heavy surf. It is the world's only tracked vehicle capable of operating in rough seas and plunging surf up to 10 ft (3.0 m) high. It is the successor to USMC LVTP-5.
The mission of the AAV7A1 dictates its bulk and unusual shape. The vehicle is taller and wider than any other armored personnel carrier (APC). The bow of the aluminum hull has an upturned snout extending well forward of the tracks. Below the nose, the hull flares out in sponsons. This forward section of the hull houses the transmission and engine. The driver and commander are located to the left of the engine compartment, the gunner to the right in a slightly elevated weapons station. Farther aft, the crew compartment can hold 25 troops in three rows; the compartment's upper sides are sloped toward the centerline.
Propulsion is by tracks on land and by twin waterjets in the water. Afloat, the AAV is steered by a deflector's stream at the rear of each waterjet. Secondary track propulsion can be used if necessary.
|Today in WW II: 10 Mar 1945 Japanese incendiary balloon by chance becomes entangled in the electrical lines feeding the Hanford, WA plutonium reactor, forcing a shut down, the only American facility shut down by enemy action during WW II.
U.S. Marine Corps Amphibian Assault Vehicle-7 (AAV7 or AAV7A1)
The history of the LVTP7/AAV7 may be summarized as follows:
- 1972 - 1975 LVT7 Fielded. Most common variant was the LVTP-7.
- 1983 - 1986 LVT7A1 Service Life Extension Program (SLEP)
- 1987 Redesignated AAV7A1 to better reflect mission
- 1987 - 1999 Product Improvement Program (PIP) - Upgrade Lethality, Survivability and
- 1999 – 2003 AAV7A1 Vehicle Reliability, Availability and Maintainability/Rebuild to Standard Program (RAM/RS)
Variants of the AAV7A1 include:
|Variant ||Name ||Mission|
|AAVP7A1 ||Personnel Variant ||Carries troops in
water operations from ship to shore, through rough water and surf zone. It carries troops to
inland objectives after ashore.|
|AAVC7A1 ||Command Variant||Mobile command post for communications with subordinate adjacent, and senior infantry units or supported units as well as with supporting arms and logistics support units. It provides work stations for 10 personnel; communications equipment is
located on the port side and staff equipment on the starboard side.|
|AAVR7A1 ||Recovery Variant||Mobile and complete maintenance shop tracks.
Enables vehicle recovery and maintenance functions to be performed in the field through
The hull length is 26 ft. while the width and height are 10 ft. 9 in. and 10 ft. 8 in. respectively. Ground clearance is 16 inches. Track lenght on the ground is just under 13 feet. Combat loaded weight is 58,105 lbs.
The USMC EFV (Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle, originally named Advanced Amphibious Assault Vehicle until 2003) was expected to replace the AAV7A1 with low rate initial production planned for FY2007. However, further delays with the EFV program stretched to 2011 with full production still years away. In January 2011 it was announced that EFV was cancelled due to budget pressures. Instead, the AAV7 will be upgraded with more armor, better electronics and weaponry.
Find additional photos and hi-res versions of the Amphibian Assault Vehicle-7 (AAV-7) at the Olive-Drab Military Mashup:
Amphibian Assault Vehicle-7 (AAV-7) Photo Gallery
USMC AAV7A1 Amphibian Assault Vehicles at Freshwater Beach, Australia, during Exercise Crocodile, 1 Oct 1999.
USMC AAV7A1 in the water after launch from USS Germantown (LSD 42). The AAV is completely watertight, and very bouyant. When launching the AAV all hatches are closed to ensure no water enters. After hitting the water the driver and machine gunner open the hatch to better navigate the AAV.
USMC AAV7A1 Amphibian Assault Vehicle maneuvers near the USN Austin Class Amphibious Transport Dock, USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) during a well deck qualification drill off the coast of Southern California, 26 April 2006.
4th Assault Amphibian Battalion Marines on board a USMC AAV7A1 Amphibian Assault Vehicle searching the area around the Chalmette Bridge in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina, 10 September 2005.
USMC AAV7A1 from the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable) maneuvers into position to enter the well deck of an amphibious assault ship conducting Maritime Security Operations in the Persian Gulf during Operation Iraqi Freedom, 23 July 2005.
USMC AAV7A1 Amphibian Assault Vehicles coming ashore during Capabilities Exercise (CAPEX) training, Camp Lejeune, NC, 21 April 2004.