Cummins, Achates Team to Build Advanced Tech Military Diesel Engine

achates engine

Diesel engine maker Cummins Inc. said it will team with Achates Power, the developer of an opposed piston engine, to develop and build an advanced technology engine for military use under a $47.4 million contract with the U.S. Army.

The companies said Monday the engine would be for future U.S. combat vehicles as well as the present Bradley fighting vehicle models.

The engine will be a four-cylinder, 14.3-liter, opposed-piston diesel producing 1,000 horsepower and 2,400 pound-feet torque, Achates spokesman Andrew Schreck told

While designed and intended for military use, it could have future commercial applications in heavy trucking, Schreck said.

Achates led development of the initial prototype with Indiana-based Cummins under an earlier design-and-testing contract, he said.

The so-called OP diesel engine is cleaner and more efficient that standard diesels. It is based on the Atkinson-cycle engine developed in 1882.

The modern Achates OP deign places two pistons in a single cylinder, each connected to its own crankshaft.

The design eliminates cylinder heads and valve trains, greatly reducing the complexity of the engine and its vulnerability to damage in the adverse climate and terrain conditions in which modern fighting vehicles must often operate.

“The goal of the project is to significantly improve the performance, survivability and range of ground combat vehicles, while reducing fleet fuel use,” the companies said in their statement.

Specifications call for the production engine to reduce waste heat by 21 percent, improve power density by 50 percent and cut fuel use by 13 percent compared with current “typical combat vehicle engines,” the companies said.

While Achates was lead on the prototype development, Cummins is charged with the production engine contract, which was awarded by the National Advanced Mobility Consortium.

The engine will be manufactured by Cummins using Achates’ engine architecture and technical assistance, said Schreck.

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