The Deployable Universal Combat Earthmover [DEUCE] is a high-speed, high mobility, earth-moving system capable of conducting the following activities: clearing, leveling, and excavation operations in support of mobility, countermobility, survivability, and sustained light engineering missions. The DEUCE can be parachute dropped and, thanks to the rubber tracks, travel on its own at speeds up to 30 mph. Other bulldozers in the inventory must be hauled by trailer when traveling with ground forces. The new earth-mover's added speed reduces the number of pieces of equipment engineers must deploy and reduces the time and number of aircraft required to transport units. The operator compartment and controls on the DEUCE provide other benefits. This includes increased earth-moving capacity, reduced training time and less operator fatigue. The bulldozer also has advanced communications and global positioning systems to enhance the Army's capabilities on future battlefields. Although not tested for this particular requirement, the DEUCE can be used to rip ice with its scarifier teeth. It is expected that it should be able to rip ice to the same depth it scarifies soil. No ripper is expected to be added to the DEUCE.
The Army has a requirement for 184 DEUCE bulldozers and is planning to purchase DEUCEs through the year 2003 subject to availability of funds. The DEUCE is replacing the D-5 Dozer.
Caterpillar’s non-developmental item (NDI) DEUCE is an integration of commercial components and technologies, used throughout their other lines of construction equipment. Caterpillar’s Defense and Federal Products Group, Mossville, IL, manages the development and production program and plans to build the DEUCEs at its Caterpillar Paving Products facility in Minneapolis, MN. The Army DEUCE program, which is managed by the Project Manager for Tank-Automotive Weapon Systems and the Product Manager, Construction Equipment/Materials Handling Equipment, is heralded as a successful example of the Army’s acquisition reform efforts.In late 1996 the US Army Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command awarded Caterpillar Inc. a contract option for production and testing of a new high-speed, rubber-tracked bulldozer. Light infantry and airborne combat engineers tested the new earth-movers, using them to prepare airstrips, roads and protective fighting positions under combat conditions. The contract awarded to Caterpillar was a production option to an existing 1995 research and development contract for the development production of prototypes, and testing of the DEUCE. The production option awarded is valued at $8.7 million, and was the first of several such options to the contract. The 1995 contract, valued at $3.3 million, was a competitive solicitation to which Caterpillar was the only respondent. The total contract, with all options, was valued at over $56.6 million over four years.