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This is Not Your Father’s Parachute: US Army Replaces 1950s-Vintage Chute

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US Army ParatroopersDrop into North Korea(click to view larger) We all have seen photos of a sea of big round parachutes, as US Army paratroopers descended on German troops in France during World War II, on North Korean troops during the Korean War, and into northern Iraq in the most recent Iraq War. The US Army’s parachute design hasn’t changed much over the years. Until now. The US Army has undertaken a complete redesign of its T-10 parachute, which it has used since the 1950s. The new T-11 parachute has a new square design and a number of advantages over the T-10: a larger canopy, slower descent rate, and greater carrying capacity. After 3,200 test jumps, the Army is moving ahead with T-11 procurement to get the parachutes into the field… T-11 Parachute The US Army is paying up to $200 million to buy between 45,000 and 50,000 T-11 parachutes from 3 firms: Aerostar International in Sioux Falls, SD (W911QY-09-D-0036); Airborne Systems North America [PDF] in Santa Ana, CA (W911QY-10-D-0003); and BAE Systems in Phoenix, AZ (W911QY-10-D-0001). The new parachute features several improvements [PDF] over the T-10: an upgraded harness that fits the smallest and largest soldiers and allows integration […]

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