In the early 1930s, the U.S. Army became involved in the research and development of automotive antifreeze/coolants. This effort was justified because military requirements for antifreeze/coolants are more severe than those usually encountered in normal civilian operation. The tactical and operational deployment of military vehicles results in exposure to extreme climatic operating conditions and unusual storage situations. Nearly every conceivable cooling system design is utilized in military vehicles. Because of the need for antifreeze/coolants that will perform in all of these environments, the development of Army antifreeze specifications through the years centered around a single universal material that would be compatible with all situations. The aim for maximum efficiency, simplified logistics, and safety has been maintained.
Technical activities for the past 50 years demonstrate the Army's willingness and ability to assume its share of responsibility for coolants. Army contributions and expertise are recognized by associates in government and industry. This paper highlights stages of technological progress made toward the development of coolants through the years.
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