NATICK, Mass. -- An early user evaluation of the Expeditionary Shelter Protection System, or ESPS, was successfully conducted on May 22-24 utilizing Human Research Volunteer Soldiers from the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center.

The ESPS is a ballistic panel and attachment system comprised of a series of stackable, interlocking, 7 feet high by 4 feet wide, ruggedized panels and support system.

This provides warfighters, who live and work in military shelters, with a rapidly deployable, immediate, mobile ballistic protection against small arms and fragmentation threats.

Four-person Soldier teams participating in the user evaluation successfully performed a full ESPS setup and strike around a 32 feet by 20 feet air-supported, tent system.

Technical personnel from the NSRDEC and Product Manager - Force Sustainment Systems, or PM-FSS, provided new equipment training for the Soldiers, observed and documented all user evaluation activities and obtained detailed user-feedback from the participating Soldiers on the ESPS at the conclusion of the evaluation.

"Attention to Human Systems Integration early in system development was the key in creating an ESPS system that is both mission-effective and simple to deploy," said NSRDEC Human Factors Engineering Lead, Dawn Woods.

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The U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, which has the mission to provide innovative research, development and engineering to produce capabilities that provide decisive overmatch to the Army against the complexities of the current and future operating environments in support of the joint warfighter and the nation. RDECOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command.