Security (S&B/CBRNE) Magazine

Spring 2017

Security & Border Protection and CST & CBRNE Source Book, published jointly, concentrate on WMD response, NGB training, counterterrorism, and border security

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Page 19 of 35

American Soldiers deployed to the world's worst combat zones depend on body armor to keep them safe. Countless veterans of action in Iraq and Afghanistan can testify to the lifesaving utility of their armor. Likewise, Soldiers count on body armor to fit and function well and not leave them permanently injured from body strain once they have returned to civilian life. Dynamic Test Application Aside from putting this improved body armor through its paces in a brutally cold Alaska December, the test resulted in improved methodologies for human factors testing, and it all stems from the intensely dynamic flexibility of Soldier movement in combat. "Anything you are doing as a Soldier is made up of compound, multi-joint movements," said Isaac Howell, test officer. Howell, who spent 10 years in uniform and deployed to Iraq as an infantry officer, has particular interest and insight into the importance of fit and function for Soldier systems like body armor, and was excited to approach the test in a novel manner. "The standard anthropomorphic measurements historically utilized in Human Factors Engineering testing are static, not dynamic," said Howell. "You sit in a chair and bend over and I measure that angle with an instrument. That's a static measurement -- even a layperson can see the limitations in that kind of measurement." Howell feels a great complement to this type of testing is using a functional movement screen, a system developed by clinicians, physical therapists, and physiologists for use in the competitive sports world. Utilizing seven different exercises to screen the components of fundamental human movement, the system predicts the possibility of biomechanical injury due to poor movement based on a NEXT-GEN BODY ARMOR GOES NEXT LEVEL U.S. Army Cold Regions Test Center recently tested a new modular body armor system, subjecting it to hard use in an extreme Alaskan winter. Among other things, Soldiers from Fort Wainwright's 25th Infantry Division fired over 2,400 rounds conducting marksmanship training in the armor. (Photo by Sebastian Sarrloos) By Mark Schauer, Yuma Proving Ground U.S. Army Cold Regions Test Center (CRTC), located near Delta Junction, Alaska, recently tested a new modular body armor system that can be scaled up or back in four tiers, depending on the severity of the mission. The tiers consist of a range of soft and hard plates, and the highest tier includes a combat shirt with integrated soft armor and groin protection. ADVANCING PROTECTIVE MODULARITY BODY ARMOR 18 | S&BP and CST & CBRNE | Spring 2017

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