US Orders Advanced Combat Helmets
The Advanced Combat Helmet (ACH) was one of the 14 Rapid Fielding Initiative items developed in 2004, for soldiers on their way to Iraq or Afghanistan. The ACH is made of a new type of Kevlar to provide improved ballistic and impact protection. Tests show it will withstand a hit from a 9mm round at close range, a test the previous helmets would fail. Some have even stopped IED fragments.
The ACH is smaller and 3.5 lbs lighter then the PASGT model (known colloquially as the “Fritz helmet”) and is cushioned on the inside, which sits more comfortably on a soldier’s head…
ACH are also designed to allow an unobstructed field of view and increased ambient hearing capabilities for the wearer. A different suspension system inside allows a soldier to fight more effectively when wearing body armor, but the trade-off is that it covers a smaller area, and seems to require more frequent adjusting.
It’s compatible with the current night vision devices, communications packages, and NBC defense (Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical) equipment, although some special mounting kits are needed to achieve compatibility.
The US military has issued ACH recalls before, from GenTex and ArmorSource.
Aug 14/12: Norotos, Inc. in Santa Ana, CA receives a $155.8 million firm-fixed-price contract for advanced combat helmets and helmet mount assemblies. Work will be performed in Santa Ana, CA until Aug 1/17. Two bids were solicited, with 2 bid received by the US Army Contracting Command at Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD (W91CRB-12-D-0009).
Aug 14/12: Wilcox Industries Corp. in Portsmouth, NH wins a $177.2 million firm-fixed-price contract for advanced combat helmets and helmet mount assemblies. Work will be performed in Portsmouth, NH until Aug 1/17. Two bids were solicited, with 2 bid received by the US Army Contracting Command at Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD (W91CRB-12-D-0010).