The ACH battle helmet is the next stage in the personal protection system of US service members. It has several improvements over the pre-production helmets supplied by the United States Armed Forces. It is lighter and more comfortable to wear. Such a helmet may have appeared in the troops earlier, but customers put the most optimal ratio of price and functionality before the manufacturers. The appearance of such a helmet is due to two reasons – the development of science, the mastery of new technologies, and the increase in the military budget.
The ACH provides improved ballistic protection to the soldier, is well fixed on the head, and has good visibility and audibility.
The Chin Strap is made of cotton with polyester fibers giving high strength. The helmet is made of fire-resistant and moisture-resistant materials. The mounting and fixing elements are easily adjustable to a given size and easily replaced in case of need.
The soft sealing pads inside the helmet are also made of fire-resistant bulletproof material.
One of the novelties of this helmet is to flatten the neck protection using additional bulletproof cushions that cover the body’s area between the helmet’s lower edge and the upper edge of the gate of the standard IOTV military bulletproof jacket.
ACH helmets are available in five sizes.
Helmet for crews of combat vehicles DH-132 AS of the US Armed Forces
AS GENTEX Corporation has specially designed DH-132 helmets for use by management personnel and the acquisition of military armored vehicles. Combat vehicle crew helmets are made according to MIL-H-44117 standards. Helmets are available in several configurations for specific types of tasks.
Three basic helmet configurations include:
Helmet DH-132AS Basic Base
This helmet consists of an outer shell, an inner liner, and radio headsets. The main applications for the DH-132AS helmet are tanks of various types, APCs, etc., of armored vehicles.
The helmet is similar to the DH-132AS Basic but has waterproof properties for marine environments. The internal DH-132AS/RHIB helmet system also has a waterproof inner liner. Typical applications for this helmet include a wide range of naval floating.
This helmet has a unique external and internal design, equipped with a thoughtful interface that effectively interacts with the vehicle’s combat systems and the sightline system. The DH-132AS/SV helmet system also includes a set of communications. Typical applications are Leopard tanks.
The ACH is further developing the Modular Integrated Communications Helmet (MICH) helmet, designed for US Special Operations Command. The development of the MICH began in 1997. Three helmet versions were developed: MICH TC-2000, MICH TC-2001, and MICH TC-2003.
The ACH helmet is almost identical in shape and outline to the MICH TC-2000 helmet. The ASN helmet is a MICH, which removed all elements (headset), communication, and other equipment (Strob lantern, microphones, PNV, and a device for displaying information from the weapon’s sight).
Compared with the PASGT helmet, the ASN has a reduced protection area. The front ledge is removed, and the visor is removed to improve visibility upwards and facilitate the mounting of night vision device plates. The helmet’s lateral edges are raised so that the entire lower edge of the helmet behind the temples is «flat» compared to PASGT, where the back surface is bent outward. This feature provides better compatibility with various communication equipment headsets (communications headsets) and better audibility in the absence of such equipment. As a result, the field of vision has increased. The perception of the sound background has been improved, which, together, ensures a better mastery of the combat environment than the previous generation’s helmets.
As a result, the Army Command concluded that a low-profile helmet outweighed the disadvantages associated with less protection, especially in modern urban environments.
The ACH has a 9 mm full-casing bullet (8.04g) more excellent fastness than the PASGT. The protective part of the helmet is made of organotextolite based on a new, improved variety of kevlar tissue. The «surface density» of at least the first batches of ASN helmets was 11 kg/m², while the thickness of the protective part was 8.13 mm. The characteristics of anti-fragmentation resistance according to V50 are given in the table below.
Future development of combat helmet:
American researchers have created helmets that help soldiers determine the sniper’s location. The development is based on well-known technology that allows the analysis of characteristic sounds produced by powerful cannons with bullets and calculates the direction and distance to the source. A significant difference between the new system and its counterparts is that it does not use a centralized or self-contained set of sensors but the entire network of such devices – independently of a soldier. The idea is to equip each helmet with four microphones, from which the information enters the soldier’s personal PDA via Bluetooth. Maps or photographs of the area where a combat operation is conducted are loaded into each device in advance. All these “mobile devices” are network nodes interacting with each other by radio communication. This diagram allows us to triangulate the location of the sniper. ” Since the microphones in the helmet are very close together, the accuracy is not very high. But the nodes constantly exchange data about these acoustic signals’ time and direction and location and direction. When a ball detects two or more shots, they can calculate the bearing within a degree and a distance of several meters.” The sniper detection system operates in a fully automatic mode: even automated queues cannot prevent the successful detection of sniper shots. Geotosicionic soldiers are produced using tiny radios that are much more accurate than GPS. Each node of the new system has a small mass, assembled from available items and worth about $1,000.