SA company Supashock unveils new military load handling system

From L to R: Ben Hudson (Executive board member, Rheinmetall Defence), Christopher Pyne (Federal Minister for Defence Industry), Oscar Fiorinotto (Managing Director, Supashock), Michael Wittlinger (Head of Rheinmetall’s Logistic Vehicle business unit)
Picture courtesy of Supashock

From L to R: Ben Hudson (Executive board member, Rheinmetall Defence), Christopher Pyne (Federal Minister for Defence Industry), Oscar Fiorinotto (Managing Director, Supashock), Michael Wittlinger (Head of Rheinmetall’s Logistic Vehicle business unit) Picture courtesy of Supashock

Supashock, an Adelaide-based automotive technology company now part of the Rheinmetall global corporate network, officially launched its Automated Load Handling System at Eurosatory 2018, a premier international defence and security exhibition in Paris, France (June 11-15).

Supashock’s 17-tonne Automated Load Handling System – or ALHS 17 – is a pioneering technical solution that enables efficient, automated loading and unloading of containers, modules and flat racks onto military trucks from a protected truck cabin in combat environments.

The Supashock ALHS 17 has been fitted to a Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles HX 8×8 truck and its future derivative which is being delivered for the German Army.

The Minister for Defence Industry, Christopher Pyne, launched the innovation at Eurosatory in France, referring to the collaboration as “a great example of an innovative Australian business transferring its knowledge and skills to take advantage of opportunities available in the defence industry and becoming an advanced manufacturing exporter.”

Supashock’s load handling system reduces risk by introducing the unique capability of automated loading and unloading of ISO containers, modules and STANAG-compliant flat racks weighing up to 17 tonnes from inside the highly protected truck cab.

The ALHS 17 employs motion technology to create an integrated load handling solution for military applications. By eliminating manual operations through the introduction of automated technology, a single individual can operate the system. The traditional loading and unloading of containers and equipment from military logistics vehicles requires the use of multiple personnel, diverting resources away from other tasks, reducing operator situational awareness, and exposing several individuals in a potentially hostile environment.

The ALHS17 has several integral mechanical degrees of freedom that combine with a computer-assisted user interface, making the task of loading and unloading a container easy in all conditions. Also, the cycle time of loading and unloading ISO containers or modules with the ALHS 17 is considerably faster than current in-service load handling systems.

“Supashock has truly revolutionised the concept of integrated load handling systems for military applications,” said Michael Wittlinger, head of Rheinmetall’s Logistic Vehicle business unit. “The ALHS 17 introduces a genuine ‘lift and go’ capability that significantly reduces the time spent by military personnel in a hostile environment, thus increasing overall safety and survivability.”