"The Army has been at war for close to five years now and I am extremely proud of all of our Soldiers, civilians, and families. We have asked a lot of them, from repetitive combat tours, to transforming the Army, to expanding our training base, to resetting our combat equipment. Simply put, this is the finest Army this nation has ever put into combat."-General Peter J. Schoomaker said in a statement released July 27, 2006.
Interceptor Body Armor
What is it? Interceptor Body Armor (IBA) is a modular, multiple-threat body armor composed of ergonomically designed front and back plates, and an outer tactical vest (OTV), compatible with the Modular Lightweight Load-Carrying Equipment. The OTV weighs 8.4 lbs without plates and protects against fragmentation and 9mm rounds. The small arms protective insert (SAPI) plates can withstand multiple small arms hits. Total system weight is 16.4 lbs, which is nine lbs lighter than the Personal Armor System Ground Troops/Interim Small Arms Protective Over-vest (PASGT/ISAPO) combination. Attachable throat and groin protectors provide increased protection, and webbing attachment loops on the front of the vest allow Soldiers to tailor loads to meet mission needs.
What has the Army Done? Each new generation of body armor is designed to increase protective capability to stop or slow down fragments and reduce the number of wounds over older versions. The latest version of IBA, is a joint service item designed and developed to incorporate the requirements of the Army and Marines. This system was designed to replace the ISAPO and the PASGT vests. Additionally the Army has augmented IBA with Deltoid Auxiliary Protection (DAP) capability which covers the shoulder/upper arm and armpit/underarm areas. DAP provides the same level of protection as the OTV and consists of two upper and lower arm protectors.
What efforts does the Army plan to continue in the future? The U.S. Army will begin fielding a SAPI Side Plate in 2006. The SAPI Side Plate will be secured to each side of the OTV and provide the Soldier with small arms ballistic protection. This will add approximately two pounds to the total weight of the system.
Why is this important to the Army? IBA is the cornerstone of the U.S Army's force protection strategy. IBA is state of the art and provides our Soldiers with unprecedented protection against serious and lethal bullet and fragmentation wounds.
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For more information on this and other topics see Addendum J in the Army Posture Statement.