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D3O Impact Protection Specified by US Army

October 1st, 2020

Thursday 1 Oct, 2020 – D3O is proud to be the specified helmet suspension pad supplier in the recently awarded Integrated Helmet Protection System (IHPS) Suspension System contracts. The split awards to VisionCorps (Lancaster, Pennsylvania), and Winston-Salem Industries For The Blind Inc. (Winston-Salem, North Carolina), are Firm Fixed Price Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contracts, with deliveries through 21 June 2023. Under the terms of the contract, D3O will deliver up to 100,000 suspension pad sets per year. Building on D3O’s past performance delivering IHPS helmet pads to the US Army as a sub-tier supplier during the Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) program phase, these latest awards cement D3O’s market position as a leading provider of next generation head protection to the US Armed Forces.

The IHPS is one of four subsystems of the cutting-edge Soldier Protection System (SPS), a modular, scalable, tailorable platform designed to defeat current threats at a reduced weight in comparison to the Army’s existing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) system. SPS increases the warfighter’s survivability, mobility and modularity by optimizing soldier protection while effectively reducing weight with the latest technologies and managing all lifecycle aspects of personal protective equipment. SPS provides the soldier with multiple levels of protection tailorable to a broad range of missions.

The IHPS consists of a helmet, with provision for adding mandible protection and/or ballistic visor for mounted use. The system is designed to protect a soldier’s head, enabling soldiers to configure its various components to optimize protection to the specific threat and mission.

D3O, a UK-based impact protection company with offices and Berry Amendment-compliant production capability in the US, was the first company to simultaneously meet the IHPS system’s rigorous 14 foot/second impact protection requirement while delivering improved performance for the traditional 10 foot/second requirement. The company is now producing a one-size-fits-all IHPS helmet pad system that is also lighter and more comfortable than the previous generation. This reduces soldier burden, allowing for increased survivability, agility, and maneuverability.

To develop the system, D3O leveraged its previous helmet pad design expertise supplying multiple Defense customers, including prominent international protective kit providers, as well as its expertise developing market-leading impact protection across the industrial, sports, motorcycle and electronics markets. The result, developed in collaboration with the National Industries for the Blind (NIB), is a helmet pad set that exceeds the requirements set by the US Army. D3O commenced IHPS Generation I LRIP in summer 2018.

Bill VanMullekom, Executive Vice President, said: “Our ultimate goal for the SPS IHPS program is to bring the benefits of next generation D3O Impact Protection to those that need it most. Our next generation helmet pad systems meet the most stringent impact standards while being suited for a wide array of helmet shells, offering maximum protection to the warfighter. D3O invests heavily in its new material and product engineering pipeline initiatives and is proud to serve US Army needs with this latest technology.”

The new offering complements D3O’s helmet pad range, consisting of the original TRUST Stealth and Berry Compliant TRUST Nimbus, the company’s latest lightweight system tested for use in both aramid and polyethylene helmet shells for greater versatility. Nimbus is available in 7- and 9-pad configurations, the latter affording end users the option to remove a single pad to create a channel for over-the-ear hearing communication straps. A study conducted in the second quarter of 2020 to obtain both military and law enforcement user reviews on TRUST Nimbus confirmed it is suitable for wear all day, every day. A majority of users advised this system was better or much better in terms of comfort, breathability, weight and overall than their prior helmet liner, and 100 percent recommended a change from their prior system to the TRUST Nimbus system.

Army-funded Research May Enable Drones to Run on Any Type of Fuel

October 1st, 2020

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. — The U.S. Army recently awarded the University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign an $8 million, four-year cooperative agreement to develop key technologies that may allow the Army’s unmanned air and ground vehicles to run on any type of fuel.

Researchers at the U.S. Army’s Combat Capabilities Development Command Army Research Laboratory expect new technologies to increase unmanned vehicle performance and reliability and increase drone efficiencies.

“The Army’s fleet of unmanned aircraft systems often experiences performance and reliability issues due to fuel property variations and their effects on the ignition,” said Dr. Mike Kweon, program manager for the lab’s Versatile Tactical Power and Propulsion Essential Research Program.

The university will research comprehensive multi-fuel chemistry and ignition assistant technologies, which add energy to engines for reliable ignition.

Engines require a mixture of air and fuel, and an ignition source–either spark or compression ignition–to operate. For compression-ignition engines, thermal energy generated by compression is insufficient when low ignition quality fuels are used especially at high altitudes and cold conditions.

To address this, University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign researchers will investigate the ignition chemistry of fuels using machine learning algorithms, develop materials for novel ignition assistant technologies for flexible fuel UAVs, and investigate advanced propulsion technologies for high speed air launch effects in collaboration with Army scientists and researchers.

“We are thrilled to be taking part in development of new technologies that will be integrated into new UAV propulsion systems in the future for the Army. Equally important is training the next generation of engineers who can serve our nation in this field of science,” said Prof. Tonghun Lee, University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign. “This partnership is very exciting. The laboratory set out on a mission to operationalize science for transformational overmatch.”

Part of effort will expand the team to include experts in academia, small businesses and industry to push concepts and ideas into future capabilities for the Army, Lee said.

“The University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign has expertise and capability to perform research in multi-fuel chemistry and ignition assistance in a partnership with the Army to advance these technologies and to provide future capabilities for the warfighter,” he said.

This university-led research project is one of 11 funded this summer by the Army’s corporate laboratory as a part of Center for UAS Propulsion efforts to develop technologies for multi-fuel capable hybrid-electric engines. Each university partner is helping the Army address the energy demand required to power future unmanned vehicles. The Army awarded additional funding for similar research at the University of Minnesota; University of Michigan; University of Wisconsin-Madison; University of Illinois at Chicago; Iowa State University; University of Delaware; University of North Texas; Texas A&M University; University of Missouri and University of Tennessee-Knoxville.

The research, slated to begin this fall, is part of a larger research portfolio of multi-fuel capabilities technologies led by the laboratory that supports the Army Modernization Priority for Future Vertical Lift. Most recently, the laboratory announced the development of a new, advanced scientific model that will allow vehicle maintenance specialists to turn to bio-derived fuels in austere locations, as well as efforts to convert a home-based generator into a power source for autonomous ground and air vehicles.

By US Army CCDC Army Research Laboratory Public Affairs

Viridian Debuts New EON Optics Red Dot Series

September 30th, 2020

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – September 30, 2020 – Viridian Weapon Technologies is proud to announce two new additions to their EON Optics lineup. The EON 1×20 Red Dot and EON 1X35 Red Dot offer rapid target acquisition in a robust and compact package. Their 2MOA dots offer parallax free precision at 100 yards. These new EON Optics are covered by Viridian’s Limited Lifetime Warranty and will be available exclusively through Rural King stores or at www.rkguns.com.

“Viridian is proud to be expanding our line of optics with these highly versatile red dots, and Rural King is an ideal partner to bring them to American gun owners.” said Viridian President and CEO Brian Hedeen. “Red Dots are perfect for pistol caliber carbines, tactical shotguns and rifles. Our new EON Red Dots combine precision with durable dependability. From range work to self-defense, red dots speed up time-to-target when you need it most.”

The EON 1×20 Red Dot offers ten settings for its 2MOA dot reticle. When rail space is limited, the EON 1×20 Red Dot provides performance in a compact design. Its ergonomic controls allow shooters to make adjustments without taking their eyes from their target. The EON 1×20 Red Dot can be mounted directly to a picatinny rail with the included see-through riser.

The EON 1×35 Red Dot’s objective lens offers an increased field of view for even faster target acquisition. Its reticle is comprised of a single 2MOA dot surrounded by an illuminated circle. The EON 1×35 has three color settings: red, green, and blue, making this a great option for all light conditions and it comes with a forward canted picatinny mount.

The EON 1×20 Red Dot and EON 1×35 Red Dot will both be available exclusively through Rural King, America’s Farm and Home Store. Rural King is proudly carrying on the tradition of the general store and has locations across Alabama, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio, Michigan, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Florida, North Carolina, West Virginia and Virginia. For more information, visit www.ruralking.com.

Wreaths Across America to Dedicate the Colonel Roger Donlon Vietnam War ‘Welcome Home’ Room at its History & Hospitality House in Maine

September 30th, 2020

Col. Donlon, United States Army Special Forces (Retired), was the first recipient of the Medal of Honor during the Vietnam War

COLUMBIA FALLS, Maine – Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020 – On Saturday, Oct. 3, Wreaths Across America (WAA) will dedicate the Colonel Roger Donlon Vietnam War ‘Welcome Home’ Room at its newly renovated History & Hospitably House located next door to the nonprofit’s national headquarters in Columbia Falls, Maine.

Colonel Donlon became the first American soldier to be awarded the Medal of Honor in Vietnam for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his own life above and beyond the call of duty on 6 July 1964. Col. Donlon and his wife Norma have dedicated their lives to service of this country and the communities in which their family has been stationed throughout Roger’s 30-year military career.

“Norma and I are honored and proud to participate in the dedication of this special room.  As a Vietnam era Gold Star Wife, Norma is grateful to WAA for providing a place where families can gather when visiting to participate in the Remembrance Tree Program,” said Col. Donlon. “As Blue Star parents of three sons who have served our country, we encourage others to visit WAA and enjoy the warm hospitality of the Worcester Family and all those involved with the mission to Remember… Honor… Teach.”

The Vietnam War ‘Welcome Home’ Room is the latest of the WAA History & Hospitality House room projects to be completed by WAA since starting this endeavor nearly three years ago, and is the largest room in the house, chosen because of the space it offers for local Vietnam Veterans to gather and share stories with each other and the community.

“Several years ago, a land purchase was made to secure a right-of-way and access to the Wreaths Across America headquarters – a building donated to the organization by the community. This historic home built in 1820 was part of that purchase,” said Karen Worcester, executive director WAA. “We decided that it would make a great house for the many Gold and Blue Star families, and veterans that visit throughout the year. In keeping with our mission to Remember, Honor, and Teach, each room is being renovated and decorated to represent a period in United States history associated with a military conflict.”

As ambassadors for Wreaths Across America, and active participants in the program in their hometown of Leavenworth, KS, the Donlon’s have become very involved in the mission over the last several years. They first traveled to Maine in 2017 to help with the opening of the similarly named Vietnam ‘Welcome Home’ Exhibit at the National Wreaths Across America Museum. That same year, the couple also served as honorary co-grand marshals for the annual escort to Arlington National Cemetery. Most recently in 2018, they participated in the dedication of the Medal of Honor Remembrance Park, which is an 8-acre park located on the tip land where balsam is harvested to make veterans’ wreaths each year for placement on National Wreaths Across America Day.

“Not only is Roger an American hero, but he and Norma, are dear friends who have become part of the Wreaths Across America family,” added Worcester. “To have them be here together for this event, and give others the opportunity to learn from them as we have had the honor to do, is truly humbling.”

To view a short video on why the mission matters to the Donlon’s click here.

To learn more about Col. Roger Donlon’s service and the actions that lead to his receiving the Medal of Honor, please click here.

Armor Express Secures New Credit Facility with CIBC Bank USA to Enhance Financial Flexibility and Support its Growth

September 30th, 2020

Company also announces the appointment of Joe Kuhn as its Chief Financial Officer

ARLINGTON, VA, September 30, 2020 – Armor Express, a leading manufacturer and distributor of high-performance protective solutions for the Domestic and Federal Law Enforcement markets, Department of Defense and First Responders, announced today that it has closed a new asset-based credit facility and secured term loan with CIBC Bank USA (“CIBC”). The credit facilities have a 60-month term and provide the Company with material additional capital to fund current operations and future growth initiatives, while reducing its cost of capital.

Jim Henderson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Armor Express stated, “Over the past two years, following the acquisition and subsequent merger with KDH Defense Systems, we have seen significant growth in our business. While we had the financial resources needed to support our customers and enjoyed a strong working relationship with our former lender, the asset-based credit facility provided by CIBC provides more than twice the borrowing capacity with more favorable terms. With contracts in place with the U.S. Department of Defense, and many new multi-year awards from both Federal and Domestic Law Enforcement, improving liquidity and enhancing financial flexibility will help us scale and invest in our business and better support our customers and partners. We look forward to a long and beneficial relationship with CIBC.”

The Company also announced today the appointment of Joe Kuhn as Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”). Mr. Kuhn joined Armor Express in July 2020 and he oversees all of Armor Express’ financial, accounting, IT, and compliance operations, in addition to banking and financing relationships. He brings over 25 years of financial and operational leadership experience across a number of industries and previously served as CFO at DATUM LLC; Cross Match, Inc; IntelliDyne LLC; Fishbowl, Inc.; NextPoint Networks, Inc.; Sybase 365; OPNET Technologies, Inc.; Ciraden, Inc.; and Alaris Medical Systems, Inc., among others. He began his career at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP and was a senior manager.

Henderson continued, “Joe has been a great asset for us since he joined, and we’re excited to have him onboard as part of our leadership team. He was instrumental in helping us secure these new facilities with CIBC and his knowledge, skillsets and relationships will be a bonus for Armor Express. This is especially true as we move into the next growth phase and invest in our foundation to enhance the customer experience.”

Safariland Introduces the New Impulse Range Kit for Complete Protection

September 30th, 2020

ONTARIO, California – Safariland®, a brand of The Safariland Group, a leading global provider of safety products designed for the public safety, military, professional and outdoor markets, announced the expansion of its popular Impulse product line. The newest addition, the Impulse Range Kit, provides adaptable, complete protection by combining its Foam Impulse Hearing Protection, Ultra Compact Earmuffs and HD Flex Protective Eyewear into one convenient package.  

Safariland’s new Impulse Range Kit ($39.99 MSRP) brings two proven methods of hearing protection together for the first time. The new Foam Impulse earbuds reduce sound levels by up to 38dB and provide 13dB of continuous sound reduction. The Impulse filter technology in each foam earbud cuts dangerous noise levels while still allowing speech and audio to be heard clearly.

For indoor ranges or areas where noise levels are more persistent, the Ultra Compact Earmuffs will provide 20dB of constant protection and can be comfortably worn over the Impulse Foam earbuds.

The Impulse Range Kit also provides protection for eyes by including Safariland’s HD Flex Protective Eyewear lenses made of fog-proof, scratch-resistant polycarbonate. The wrap-around lens design offers multi-directional protection and the rubber nose bridge and adjustable earpieces allow for a secure and comfortable fit.

“The Impulse Range Kit has quickly become one of my favorite shooting accessories. Whether I’m at an indoor or outdoor range, the two layers of hearing protection and the wrap-around eyewear keep me well protected.” Pro Shooter, Rob Leatham said. “And the filter technology in the Foam Impulse earbuds shields me from harmful sounds while allowing me to clearly hear my buddies talking to me while we’re out on the range.”

LMT Defense Wins U.S. Army Contract to Produce Grenade Launchers

September 30th, 2020

Published 9/30/2020

LMT Defense, America’s premier weapons manufacturer, is pleased to announce that they have been selected to provide grenade launchers to the U.S. Army.

Official Announcement:

The $17,031,520.00 award is a firm-fixed-price contract to order M203/M203A2 grenade launchers and spare parts. The estimated completion date is Sept. 18, 2025.  U.S. Army Contracting Command, Detroit Arsenal, Michigan, is the contracting activity (W56HZV-20-D-0107).

Karl Lewis, President and CEO of LMT Defense stated, “LMT Defense is very proud to provide the U.S. Army M203/M203A2 grenade launchers. Enhancing mission effectiveness for our soldiers on the battlefield is our number one priority.” Lewis added, “LMT has made over 15,000 grenade launchers in the last 10 years. We have supported many allied nations, law enforcement, the U.S. Navy, and several other U.S. federal agencies. Every component of the grenade launcher will be manufactured at our 80,000 square foot facility in Eldridge, IA.”

Qore Performance IceVents Aero Universal Holster Pad Solves the Pain in the Hips

September 30th, 2020

Sterling, VA – Qore Performance recently expanded their popular IceVents lineup of unique padded ventilation solutions to include a simple fix for a universal hotspot on the hip under rigid, mid-length drop holsters. IceVents Aero Universal Holster Pad was built to comfortably mitigate the friction and pressure build up from long-term wear of holsters using SafariLand’s UBL platform and other similar mounts.

From Qore Performance Co-Founder and CEO, Justin Li, “We all love the SafariLand UBL and QLS system, but we all also had a pretty annoying pressure point on our hips after full days of training on the range, which brought back memories of painful shifts on duty. With relatively minor adjustments, IceVents Aero became a simple and effective solution. The initial feedback we’ve received is that we weren’t the only ones feeling this pain.”

The IceVents Aero Universal Holster Pad incorporates the extruded thermoplastic honeycomb of IceVents used for shoulder, chest, and duty belt padding and ventilation, and adds a breathable loop pile backing that attaches easily to the SafariLand UBL with a small piece of adhesive-backed hook tape. Qore Performance also includes a section of two-sided Velcro OneWrap in the package for additional security if desired.

IceVents Aero Universal Holster Pad continues the Qore Performance record of addressing thermoregulation challenges that inhibit human performance. Check out the rest of their IceAge EcoSystem for other effective solutions in temperature regulation and hydration for tactical, law enforcement, and industrial safety professionals.