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Posts Tagged ‘MARCORSYSCOM’

Marine Corps Is Looking At Commercially Available Suppressors, Issues Sources Sought Notice To Industry

Thursday, August 10th, 2017

Last week, the Marine Corps Systems Command (MARCORSYSCOM) issued a Sources Sought Notice, often also referred to a Request For Information (RFI) to industry for commerically available suppressors for the 5.56mm NATO M4, M4A1, and M27. The RFI is an important step in developing a realistic requirement which leads to a solicitation and eventually, procurement.

Marine Gunner Christian Wade (seen above) has been a big advocate of suppressing Marine weapons, even producing videos to educate Marines of their true capabilities. It’s good to see the Marines catching up with his vision.

They’ve certainly done their homework and have developed quite a list of what they are looking for. Additionally, they are keeping their options open, stating that future procurement quantities of suppressors could span between 18,000 and 194,000.

According to the RFI, at a minimum, suppressors should meet the following requirements:

1. The suppressor should be capable of detachment/attachment and disassembly/ reassembly by an operator in the field without the use of special tools for normal care and cleaning.

2. Suppressor should enable a noise level of 139 decibels or lower at either of the shooters ears.

3. Suppressor should be a design that minimizes the change in the host rifle internal operating system dynamics.

4. Suppressor may be of the over the barrel, or flush mount design and should not be longer than 20″ total barrel length (threshold), 18″ (objective).

5. Suppressor should be of the quick detachable design. A special muzzle device may be attached (by a unit Armorer) to the OEM weapon in order to facilitate installation and removal by an operator.

6. Must be able to withstand the sustained rate of the M27 IAR (capable of a rate of fire of 36 rounds per minute for 16 minutes, 40 seconds with firing starting at ambient temperature for a 600 round load).

7. The entire suppressor and muzzle device should weigh no more than 18 oz.

8. The use of the suppressor should not increase the dispersion of each respective weapon. It is acceptable for the weapon to experience a repeatable shift in the zero between unsuppressed and suppressed operating modes, but that shift should not exceed 3 MOA for each respective weapon.

9. The suppressed weapon should retain its dispersion through the life of the barrel (objective of 24,000 rounds)

10. The suppressor system is not required to have an internal projectile pathway which is the usual industry standard for a 5.56mm diameter round. The internal bullet channel may be larger than is typical of current suppressor designs. In other words, the suppressor may be able to be employed on multiple calibers (i.e. A059 Ball, AB49, AC12, AB57 etc.) without any modification to the suppressor. This attribute not only facilitates future caliber/weapon capabilities, but could also mitigate baffle strikes.

11. Suppressor should function with all Department of Defense Identification Code (DODIC) 5.56 mm ammunition, including A059 Ball, A063 Tracer, A080 Blank, AA33 Ball, AA53 Ball Special Match, AA69 Armor Piercing, AB49 Ball Carbine barrier, AC12 and AB57 Enhanced Performance Round.

12. Suppressor should not require permanent configuration changes to the weapon system.

13. Suppressor should not inhibit the mounting or operation of the M203 or M320 grenade launchers (objective).

14. Suppressor should not require the addition of a gas mitigating charging handle.

15. Should be able to accept a suppressor sleeve in order to reduce thermal signatures and mitigate operator burns.

16. All suppressor external surfaces should have a dull, low-reflective finish (to include pins, bolts, lanyards, sight posts, etc.). The external color of the system should be consistent with current camouflage colors and patterns.

18. The suppressor material should be able to accept approved USMC paint (e.g. rattle-can spray paint).

19. Suppressor should be resistant to corrosion, abrasion, impacts and chemicals, including standard Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) decontaminants.

20. The suppressor should resist maritime corrosion and/or effects of carbon/copper/lead fouling.
• MIL-L-46000C – Lubricant, Semi-fluid (Automatic Weapons)
• MIL-PRF-372D – Cleaning Compound, Solvent (Bore of Small Arms and Automatic Aircraft Weapons)
• MIL-PRF-14107D – Lubricating Oil, Weapons, Low Temperature
• MIL-PRF-63460D – Lubricant, Cleaner and Preservative for Weapons and Weapons Systems

22. The suppressor should not require a more frequent cleaning schedule than the weapon system.

23. The system, with suppressor attached should continue to operate and safely function after exposure to blowing dust, mud, salt fog, rain, and icing/freezing rain environments as specified in US Army Development Test Operations Procedure (TOP) 3-2-045 (Small Arms – Hand and Shoulder Weapons and Machineguns) dated Sep 2007.

24. The system, with suppressor attached should be able to withstand the shock from a user performing individual movement techniques in combat, and the vibrations of being transported in standard military aircraft and ground vehicles as loose cargo, without degradation of performance.

25. The system, with suppressor attached should continue to safely function after being dropped in any orientation from a 1.7 meter height onto a smooth concrete or steel surface at temperatures ranging from -25º Fahrenheit (F) to 140º F. The addition of the suppressor on the weapon system should not result in a discharge when dropped from this height.

26. The system, with suppressor attached should safely function through a temperature range of -25º F to +140º F without degradation of performance.

27. In addition to the suppressor, request information on the ability of industry to provide a BFA type suppressor (that looks like, operates like and weighs the same as the live fire suppressor). This BFA type suppressor should be capable of catching a live 5.56mm round. This BFA suppressor should also be easily distinguished as a training device only.

Those interested in providing information to MARCORSYSCOM have until September 6th.  Visit www.fbo.gov for full details. 

MARCORSYSCOM Hosts NATO Group – Focus ‘all about the Soldier, Sailor, Marine’

Thursday, April 13th, 2017

Defense experts from around the globe gathered at Marine Corps Systems Command April 5-7, to share information and work toward common solutions for complex issues across allied forces.

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization Land Capability Group on Dismounted Soldier Systems convened at MCSC’s Gruntworks Squad Integration Facility aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico. Representatives from 20 countries and three continents discussed standardization of common capabilities and issues for coalition Marines and soldiers worldwide. LCG DSS is part of the NATO Army Armaments Group, one of the three main armaments groups subordinate to NATO’s Conference of National Armaments Directors. NAAG’s mission is to support nations in achieving the objectives of NATO land force armaments cooperation. It promotes interoperability of alliance and partner armed forces by means of information exchange, materiel standardization and cooperative activities.

IMG_0840
Brig. Gen. Joseph Shrader, commander of Marine Corps Systems Command, speaks with leaders of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Land Capability Group on Dismounted Soldier Systems during the group’s biannual meeting aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico on April 5. LCG DSS is part of the NATO Army Armaments Group, one of the three main armaments groups subordinate to NATO’s Conference of National Armaments Directors. NAAG’s mission is to support nations in achieving the objectives of NATO land force armaments cooperation. It promotes interoperability of alliance and partner armed forces by means of information exchange, materiel standardization and cooperative activities. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Emily Greene)

Brig. Gen. Joseph Shrader, commander of MCSC, kicked off the three-day session with a warm welcome to attendees and provided a glimpse into the priorities of the Marine Corps.

“Our Marine Corps Operating Concept sets forth our commandant’s four directives,” said Shrader. “The future of the Corps is focused on being more capable, more networked, more resilient and more lethal. Those are the things I think about on a daily basis.”

Shrader placed emphasis on the mission of the Marine Corps rifle squad; which is to locate, close with and destroy the enemy by fire and maneuver or to repel the enemy’s assault by fire and close combat. He said the question lies in how to continue accomplishing that mission as technology constantly develops, often adding to the load of the Marine even as it provides increased capability.

“Technology is a tremendous force multiplier, but it can also be a detractor,” Shrader said. “Additional technologies and capabilities often add weight and size to the load our Marines carry. What you are doing here this week is essential to the future success of our forces.”

Shrader was joined by Timothy Goddette, deputy program executive officer at the Army’s Program Executive Office Soldier.

“This group is all about the soldier, the sailor, the Marine. And not just the soldier, but the dismounted soldier,” said Goddette. “The time you spend here this week, and throughout the year is all about lightening the load, making the soldier more lethal, and providing better protection. It’s like the old carpenter’s motto, ‘Measure twice, cut once.’”


Members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Land Capability Group on Dismounted Soldier Systems examine a prototype for exoskeleton technology April 5, aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico. During the three-day session, representatives from 20 countries and three continents discussed standardization of common capabilities and issues for coalition Marines and soldiers worldwide. LCG DSS is part of the NATO Army Armaments Group, one of the three main armaments groups subordinate to NATO’s Conference of National Armaments Directors. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Emily Greene)

Goddette said the group’s work served two important purposes: increasing the effectiveness of coalition forces and reducing defense costs.

“Every dollar we waste on something that doesn’t work is a dollar we could have spent on a soldier or Marine,” Goddette said. “We have to get it right the first time.”

LCG DSS members were also given opportunities to view new technologies that hold potential for future force enhancement and forums in which to share lessons learned and best practices.

“The LCG DSS meetings provide an important opportunity for us to come together as partner nations and share our hard-earned knowledge so that we all can benefit from it,” said Mark Richter, LCG DSS chairman and MCSC Marine Expeditionary Rifle Squad director. “I think we can all agree that our aim is to create systems that will work together in a coalition environment. These meetings are a key factor in facilitating that cross-collaboration.”

Story from www.marcorsyscom.marines.mil

Marine Corps Considers Collapsible Buttstock

Thursday, March 19th, 2009

On February 27th the MARCORSYSCOM’s Program Manager for Infantry Weapon (PM IW) issued a Sources Sought Notice for a Collapsible Butt Stock for the M16A4 Marine Corps Service Rifle. The current fixed stock of the M16A4 becomes “an obstacle when combined with the increased bulk of improved body armor”. Consequently, they are looking for something to make the weapon a little more accommodating to different body types.

The Marine Corps’ requirements are pretty straight forward:

– It has to be collapsible

– They want a minimum of four (4) and a maximum of six (6) position stops in the butt stock for adjustment

– The new stock has to be just as reliable as the current stock if not better

It is important to note that there is no solicitation document to actually purchase any collapsible stocks but it is an important first step in that direction.

You can read the entire RFI on FedBizOpps.

USMC Prepares for Improved MTV Program

Thursday, January 8th, 2009

MARCOSYSCOM is preparing to engage in a quest for a replacement carrier for the ill-fated MTV. In 2007, the Commandant of the Marine Corps halted further procurements of the bulky MTV and last summer the Marine Corps fielded a limited number of Scalable Plate Carriers. Rather than throwing the baby out with the bathwater, officials at MARCORSYSCOM are formulating a plan to replace the carrier and retain the armor systems purchased during the MTV program. It looks like the concept of “Survivability Through Mobility” espoused by PM-ICE at MARCOSYSCOM is coming to fruition.

Perhaps they will make use of the upcoming SHOT Show in order to take a look at the current state of the art in armor carrier design.

USMC Scalable Plate Carrier Follow Up

Thursday, October 9th, 2008

Eagle Industries

The Marines recently fielded a new Scalable Plate Carrier. At the time of the article we did not know the manufacturer but we can now confirm that it was designed and manufactured by Eagle Industries. At the recent AUSA annual meeting Eagle displayed a version of the carrier in UCP but while several units are interested in the product, there have been no overtures from PEO-Soldier. However, as more and more Soldiers see their Marine brothers in arms wearing the lightweight armor, we expect them to begin to request similar systems.

Marine Scalable Plate Carrier

USMC Combat Desert Jacket

Wednesday, June 18th, 2008

USMC Combat Desert Jacket

If you have ever heard the term “scarce as hen’s teeth”, then you can aptly describe the Marine Corps issue Combat Desert Jacket. Designed by 180s, an innovator in the outdoor industry, and manufactured by Tennessee Apparel, the CDJ has seen limited fielding. The concept actually goes back to the early 90s when Raven Industries, the first full-scale contractor for ECWCS, developed prototypes of a lightweight Gore-tex 3-color desert shell for MARCORSYSCOM.

Naturally as the CDJ was designed specifically for desert operations, it is available only in Marine Desert Pattern Camouflage. Since the CDJ utilizes a complex print, the design’s strength has caused a bit of a technical challenge. As you can see from the photo, the sleeves are slightly discolored compared to the body. This is because the CDJ is made from various fabrics which are strategically placed in the design to provide diverse forms of protection and these fabrics all absorb dyes differently. For example, the lower back and shoulder area of the jacket are made from Freedom-Plus, a lightweight Gore-tex fabric in order to keep the wearer dry while the middle of the back, which requires more breathability when wearing a pack is made from a lined, knit fabric. The sleeves are crafted from a four way stretch material. Rather than pit zips, from the waist to the sleeve, along the entire length of the underarm, the CDJ features a stretchy wind resistant nylon material. Lined with coyote gridded fleece, it also features color matched waterproof zippers throughout. The pockets include handwarmer, chest, and sleeve as well as a rank tab. The sleeves are capped with a monkey paw design and the Marines hope to incorporate FR technology into the sleeves in future versions unless the winter FROG shirt is developed. The CDJ also has a roll up neck gaiter incorporated into the collar. To top it all off, the entire jacket is treated with silver to suppress the growth of odor causing fungus.

Combat Desert Jacket Improved Sleeve

*UPDATE: A reader has sent me an update and a new version is being issued. They have solved the shade issues on the sleeves and dropped the monkey cuffs.

Photo Courtesy Eric Chevalier

For those who need a CDJ, the early version with shade differences on the sleeve is available from AFMO.

Survivability Through Mobility

Monday, May 26th, 2008

Finally the tide seems to be turning and the conventional wisdom of armoring service members like tanks seems to be coming to an end. At the Soldier Systems APBI in May MARCORSYSCOM officials stated the they were “willing to accept risk for the sake of mobility” and the term “Survivability through mobility” has become PM-ICE’s mantra in their quest for a replacement for the Modular Tactical Vest program. The effects of this push can already be seen with the fielding of the new plate carrier to Marines in Afghanistan. PM-ICE representatives also stated that they were looking to reduce the area of coverage on the MTV replacement and reduce cumbersomeness in order to increase lethality.

Marine Plate Carrier

USMC Scalable Plate Carrier

Saturday, May 24th, 2008

Responding to an Urgent Needs Statement from Marines in Afghanistan, MARCORSYSCOM has begun fielding a plate carrier. The recent backlash over the Modular Tactical Vest can also be credited with this bold move. It seems as though the services are getting the message that a more mobile shooter is a more lethal shooter. No details as to manufacturer have been released. However, an interesting feature on the prototype is offset PALS webbing on the upper chest.
Marine Scalable Plate Carrier