So the Army recently posted a solicitation for a new body armor concept that allows the Soldier to specifically tailor his armor protection to the mission and environment.
Four companies responded, including BAE Systems, Point Blank, Armor Works and Protective Products and the concepts were tested down at Fort Benning over the summer.
Carl Fulmore, who used to work at PEO Soldier and now runs the Biz Dev department for BAE's armor and security division, walked through the innovative armor solution BAE came up with. You all know how much of an armor nerd I am and I have to say, the BAE Soldier Scalable Protection System was one of the most amazing concepts I've seen since the Crye armor chassis.
Basically it uses a concealable armor core (that can be retrofitted with Level IV plates) and builds on a plate carrier, shoulder and arm protection and throat and groin shrapnel blockers to form a full-up turret gunner suit all the way down to an under blouse vest for CID or a stripped down plate carrier for mountaintop door kicking.
A couple things you won't see in the video include a sort of movable belly band that attaches to the bottom part of the core concealable vest. The band moves up when you sit down and drops into place when you get up, alleviating that dreaded plate crush when you're sitting in a Humvee or MATV. Also, the company has developed a belt system like the Crye solution that helps support the weight of the plate carrier or IOTV configuration, taking the strain off a Soldier's shoulder.
This is yet another cool piece of kit coming out of the Eclipse Performance Gear division of BAE.