Gibbs Amphibians has recently introduced the Phibian at an event preceding the American Society of Naval Engineers (ASNE) annual conference. Equipped with Gibbs Amphibians’ proprietary High Speed Amphibian technology, Phibian joins Humdinga II in the Gibbs Amphibians commercial portfolio, two new first-responder amphibians.
Phibian and Humdinga II feature Gibbs’ proprietary High Speed Amphibian (HSA) technology, which incorporates a number of technological advances in suspension, water propulsion and wheel-retraction design. The water-jet propulsion system enables safe operation in shallow water yet provides the high levels of thrust necessary to achieve planing speeds within seconds. A patented retracting suspension system provides exceptional ride-and-handling on the road, but in the water retracts wheels in seconds to reduce hull drag in marine use.
Phibian represents the latest generation of the commercial amphibian. Constructed primarily of carbon fiber, it is a multi-mode, multi-mission, high-speed amphibian that offers off-road capability on land. When Phibian transitions from land to water, the wheels retract and its dual jet propulsion provides water performance equal to that of purpose-built patrol and rescue boats. The transition from road to marine platform takes less than 10 seconds.
“Phibian and Humdinga II deliver a revolutionary and highly effective solution to the growing demands placed on today’s first responder and search and rescue communities,” said Gibbs’ Chairman, Neil Jenkins.
“Natural disasters in recent memory, such as the earthquake and tsunamis in Japan, Thailand, Sri Lanka and elsewhere in Asia; as well as the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, illustrate the need for amphibians as capable, versatile and efficient as Phibian and Humdinga II,” Jenkins said.
Phibian is capable of traveling at highway speeds on land and in excess of 30 mph on water. It seamlessly makes its land-to-water transition in less than 10 seconds with the simple push of a button.
Humdinga II is created specifically to deal with more remote and difficult terrain.
Gibbs has been developing its HSA technology since 1997. It represents an investment of more than $150 million and more than two million hours of engineering. Gibbs’ HSA technology can be applied to amphibians of all sizes – from 800 pounds to 10 tons. It solves the persistent challenges of land-sea borders around the world, such as beachhead landings or crossing waterways and lakes.
Phibian’s Versatility and Capability Attributes Include
• Highway-capable speed
• On-plane water performance in excess of 30 mph
• Rapid interior reconfiguration
• Power and space for tools, equipment and crew
• Replaces need for separate boats and tow vehicles