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A USN LCAC at Camp Pendleton

An air-cushioned landing craft, also called an LCAC (landing craft, air cushioned) is a modern variation on the amphibious landing boat. These craft are based on small- to mid-sized multi-purpose hovercraft, also known as "over the beach" ("OTB") craft. This allows troops and material to access more than 70 percent of the world's coastline, while only approximately 15 percent of that coastline is available to conventional boat-type landing craft. Typical barriers to conventional landing craft are soft sandy beaches, marshes, swampland, and loose surfaces. Air cushion technology has vastly increased the landing capability of the craft, providing greater speed and flexibility over traditional landing craft.

Like the mechanized landing craft, they are usually equipped with mounted machine guns; they also support grenade launchers and heavy weapons.

These vehicles are used by the United States Navy, which first received the LCAC in 1984, the United Kingdom's Royal Navy, the Russian Navy, the People's Liberation Army Navy and the Hellenic Navy.

A LCAC called 'European Bison' is reported to be the largest in the world. May 30, 2013, ay Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman confirmed that the first exemplar of this LCAC has arrived in China.[1]


Zubr class LCAC

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External links

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