Yesterday, the Army Contracting Command issued a Request for Information (RFI) / Market Survey on behalf of Product Manager Soldier Clothing and Individual Equipment (PM-SCIE) and the US Army Natick Research, Development and Engineering Command, (NSRDEC) in Natick, MA for Flame Resistant and Non-Melting, Next-to-Skin Fabrics.
In particular, the wish “to identify domestic products, suppliers and manufacturers as potential sources of knitted fabrics suitable for use in three next-to-skin garment types. These garment categories include:
A. Base layer underwear
B. Base layer underwear capable of maintaining a snug fit when soft ballistic protection is added.
C. Flame resistant shirts capable of maintaining fit and positioning of integrated ballistic protection.
1. Sleeve and side panel fabric (must have capability to be printed in IR compliant camouflage patterns)
2. Torso fabric”
In addition to basic information on any company that submits, the Government also needs:
-A fact sheet or white paper, detailing properties of the submitted fabrics, technical parameters, manufacturing location, relevant company background/experience and documented test/analysis information that would indicate performance properties against the required physical properties listed above.
-Five yards of each submitted fabric.
-Pricing for each submitted fabric in dollars per linear yard.
The RFI goes on to state that, “the Government may purchase up to 100 yards from one or more respondents for prototype development. ”
Most important, companies must review this document for salient performance characteristics.
Perspective companies have until November 29th, 2013 to respond. Full details are at the FBO posting.
As always, I will remind SSD readers that this is NOT a solicitation but rather a means to gather information from industry on the current state of the art. I encourage participation as these exercises influence future requirements.