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Archive for the ‘Parachuting’ Category

All Americans Conduct Jump Testing Of CSASS

Saturday, June 29th, 2019

FORT BRAGG, N.C. — Operational testing of the Army’s newest precision rifle, the Compact Semi-Automatic Sniper System (CSASS) began recently, marking one of the final hurdles this system will face prior to fielding.

Snipers assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division recently participated in airborne infiltration test trials of what could potentially be the Army’s newest sniper system.

“The compact nature of the CSASS is appealing to airborne forces and particularly Snipers who are typically armed with long barreled precision rifles,” said Sgt. 1st Class Ross Martin, a Test NCO with the U.S. Army Operational Test Command’s Airborne and Special Operations Test Directorate (ABNSOTD).

“Current sniper systems are equipped with 20-inch barrels, sound suppression systems and full length stocks that provide accuracy and a stable firing platform required of any precision rifle,” said David Parris, a CSASS New Equipment Training (NET) trainer from the U.S. Army Tank-automotive and Armaments Command’s Soldier Weapons Support.

Being a product of battlefield evolution, the CSASS is more geared toward operations in urban environments and operating in and around armored vehicles where traditional length sniper systems can be cumbersome.

“The CSASS will feature a reduction in overall length (with the suppression system attached) and an adjustable stock that provides maneuverability and promotes a stable firing position,” said Victor Yarosh of Project Manager Soldier Weapons.

This will provide airborne snipers a more compact load during airborne infiltration operations and provide a precision rifle platform more conducive to their combat environment without reducing their lethality.

Spec. Nicholas Farmer of Orlando, Florida, a Sniper in C Troop, 1st Battalion, 73rd Cavalry Regiment immediately identified the attributes of a more compact precision rifle.

“The CSASS is much shorter and lighter than our current system which will make long dismounted movements and reaction to contact more efficient,” he said.

Spc. William Holland from Sylacauga, Alabama, a sniper with 2nd Battalion 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment echoed his fellow snipers assessment as, “lightweight and compact makes for a more manageable load during post drop operations.”

Prior to testing, Snipers participated in a NET which included familiarization with the system, maintenance, target engagement and zeroing procedures.

The critical task in testing any small arms platform intended for use by airborne forces is ensuring zero retention of the primary optic subsequent to airborne insertion. This is a critical gauge of the paratrooper’s lethality during airfield seizure and other follow on operations.

“This process establishes a baseline for site reticle locations prior to and post airborne insertion,” said Lacretia Cook, an instrumentation technician with the ABNSOTD.

“Testers can monitor any ‘shift’ in the weapons sight reticle.”

To evaluate this performance measure of the CSASS, the ABNSOTD test team employed the organization’s mobile weapons boresight collimator to ensure the snipers’ “pre-mission” zero was not degraded by shock associated with parachute infiltration.

Once this data was collected, snipers conducted a known distance live fire exercise to gauge lethality subsequent to static line and military free fall operations.

For Sgt. Christopher Landrum of Delano, California, the target audience of trained snipers was perfect.

“It’s vital that operational troops are the ones testing the system as they are best suited to recognize system requirements and mission capabilities,” he explained.

Sgt. 1st Class Darin Pott, a senior sniper with the 1st Battalion, 73rd Armored Regiment said he would also like to see Soldiers added to the process earlier.

“The Army should involve the sniper community at the earliest possible milestone of development,” he said.

“Operational Testing is about Soldiers. It is about making sure that the systems developed are effective in a Soldier’s hands and suitable for the environments in which Soldiers train and fight,” said Col. Brad Mock, Director of ABNSOTD.

“OTC is the U.S. Army’s only independent operational test organization,” said Lt. Col. David Dykema, deputy of ABNSOTD’s Test Division.

“We test Army, Joint, and Multi-service airborne and airdrop related warfighting systems in realistic operational environments, using Soldiers to determine whether the systems are effective, suitable, and survivable.

“Any time Soldiers and their leaders get involved in operational testing,” he added, “they have the opportunity to use, work with, and offer up their own suggestions on pieces of equipment that can impact development of systems that future Soldiers will use in combat.”

Story by Mike Shelton, Airborne and Special Operations Test Directorate, U.S. Army Operational Test Command Public Affairs

Photos by Mr. Chris OLeary, Videographer, Airborne and Special Operations Test Directorate, U.S. Army Operational Test Command Public Affairs

ON THE EDGE / Jeff Provenzano Red Bull Skydiver Rhino Jump

Thursday, June 27th, 2019

EDGE, a 501c3 based in Los Angeles, is developing asymmetric counter-poaching efforts in Limpopo, South Africa among other areas.

Their area of operation is home to the third highest concentration of endangered wildlife on the continent, particularly rhino.

EDGE also works in this area pursuing genetic research on elephants, and youth community art and photography programs.

Red Bull sent their top skydiver Jeff Provenzano to South Africa to see their work — and to leap from a hot air balloon over a massive reserve of rhino which EDGE works to protect.

Gold-Star Mom Jumps from Plane…with Team of Veterans into Normandy to Commemorate D-Day, Her Late Son’s Memory

Thursday, May 30th, 2019

Practicing. Scoti Domeij with Zach Carbo

[Seattle, WA, May 2, 2019]—An elite team of veteran Army Rangers and Green Berets will jump into Normandy from a WWII C-47 aircraft to recognize the 75th Anniversary of D-Day. This historic special operations mission conducted by generations of veterans will honor those who paved the way for elite warriors and those still making the sacrifice, including the late Army Ranger and Sergeant First Class, Kristoffer Domeij. Joining the veterans is Gold Star Mother, Scoti Domeij, Kristoffer’s mother, and Red Bull athletes Andy Farrington and Luke Aikins. The mission will take place between June 1-9, 2019 in alignment with the 75th D-Day invasion activities between England and France. 

THE TEAM

Jumpers

Mark Nutsch, Army Green Beret/Ranger – ODA-595 Detachment Commander portrayed in the movie 12 Strong and documentary film Legion of Brothers. 

Zach Carbo, Army Ranger – Reece Team Leader in Iraq and Afghanistan. 

Matthew ‘Griff’ Griffin, Army Ranger – Fire Support Officer in Iraq and Afghanistan, Combat Flip Flops CEO.

Scoti Domeij, Gold Star Mother – Army Ranger Kristoffer Domeij, writer at Havok Journal.

Air Operations

Art Shaffer, Round Canopy Parachute Team, USA.

Bill Markham, Army veteran – Round Canopy Parachute Team, USA.

Andy Farrington, Red Bull Athlete – World Champion Wingsuit Pilot. 

Luke Aikins, Red Bull Athlete – World Record Holder.

Operations

Scott Neil, Army Green Beret – in documentary film Legion of Brothers.

Hubert Acthen, Round Canopy Parachute Team, Europe.

Jim Pearson, Army Green Beret – Tico Belle Pilot.

Production

Devin Graham, Devin SuperTramp 

While each military jumper has a connection through service to D-Day, both Red Bull athletes do as well. Cousins Luke Aikins and Andy Farrington’s grandfather, Lieutenant Aikens, was a fighter pilot shot down in Europe. He jumped from his plane to escape capture—and enjoyed the parachute ride down. Years later, he returned to Washington to open Kapowsin Air Sports, introducing his children and grandsons to the sport of parachuting.

The main objectives of this event are a successful tandem jump of Scoti Domeij into Normandy, France; and honoring the OSS spirit and actions within the D-Day 75th Anniversary celebrations in England and France. 

A video series of the event will be released through YouTube for Veteran’s Day 2019. 

Sponsors

This journey is made possible in part by Team Wendy, SOG Knives, and Smith Optics.

About Scoti Domeij

A Gold Star Mother is one who lost a son or daughter to service of the American Dream. Scoti’s son, Kristoffer Domeij, was a Sgt. First Class and the Army’s first qualified JTAK evaluator. He is the most deployed soldier in American history to be killed in action on his 14th deployment in Afghanistan on October 22, 2011. Scoti not only jumps in memory of her son, but in an effort to capture his spirit and more thoroughly understand the life of a soldier. 

Scoti is the owner of BlacksidePublishing.com where she publishes raw, real, transparent books related to the veteran and Gold Star Family communities. She is also a solo-parenting columnist for Colorado Springs Kids, and a writer/editor for HavokJournal.com. Her articles have appeared in such diverse publications as The New York Times, Family Life Today, Southwest Art, and Focus on the Family magazine. She has authored, co-authored, and contributed to multiple books, including the Violence of Action: The Untold Stories of the 75th Ranger Regiment in the War on Terror.

About Combat Flip Flops

Combat Flip Flops is a veteran-owned small business that manufactures products in conflict and post-conflict areas. Empowering the mindful consumer to manufacture peace through trade, Combat Flip Flops’ profits have funded the education of over 600 Afghan girls and the clearance of over 10,000 square meters of landmines in Laos. In 2018, Griff was recognized by Real Leaders magazine as one of the world’s top 100 Global Visionaries and by HillVets100 as one of the 100 most influential veterans in America. In 2016, Puget Sound Business Journal named him one of their 40 under 40 business leaders. Griff is the co-author of the business and leadership book, Steps Ascending: Rise of the Unarmed Forces.

USPA Approves Specified Round Canopy Jumping

Monday, May 27th, 2019

On May 23, the USPA Board of Directors’ Executive Committee voted to allow USPA members to jump with the U.S. round parachute groups that are recognized by the Federal Aviation Administration. USPA members may perform static-line jumps with these groups using the groups’ equipment at their own airport locations, at FAA-approved airshows and demonstrations, and at events in foreign countries governed by those countries’ aviation authorities. USPA specifies that these static-line jumps must be at a minimum altitude of 1,500 feet above ground level.

USPA members who have been qualified by these groups to act as instructors and jumpmasters may serve as instructors and jumpmasters to anyone who is a member of a round canopy group prior to May 25, 2019.

This action removes any uncertainty about USPA member participation with the upcoming jumps by the round canopy groups in Europe in commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the D-Day invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944.

The approved Executive Committee motion reads, “Effective immediately, USPA members who are members of a civilian parachute group listed with the FAA’s National Aviation Events Program may jump with that group using the following equipment and altitude:

• Minimum altitude 1,500 feet AGL

• Static-line deployed

• Round main

• Chest-mounted reserve

• Reserve static line not required

• Automatic activation device not required

• Altimeter not required

USPA members who are members of such groups may act as an instructor or jumpmaster, if so qualified by their group, using the above altitude and equipment, for those members of the group who have made a jump with that group, using the above altitude and equipment, prior to May 25, 2019, and may act as an instructor or jumpmaster for any member of the group who is a graduate of a military jump school as verified by DD214 or other military records.

These allowances do not extend to jumps at Group Member DZs, but only to the groups’ own locations, and at airshows and demonstrations allowed by the FAA or another country’s aviation authorities.”

Those with questions about what activities fall under this motion can email [email protected]

Via The Parachutist

Mystery Ranch Jump Pack System

Monday, May 20th, 2019

A better approach to the traditional H-Harness.

Here is the complete line of MYSTERY RANCH jump packs. Developed several years ago working closely with the MFF community, the packs cover the gamut of sizes. The smallest of the line up is the JUMP RATS, a rapid-access trauma bag, then JUMP KOMODO assault pack at 45 liters, followed by the OVERLOAD, weapons carry pack, and finally the 80-liter JUMP MOUNTAIN RUCK – standard issue for several elite units, domestic and International.

MYSTERY RANCH has always focused on making packs that carry well first and foremost, then balance between lightweight and durability relative to the end users’ needs. The jump packs are constructed so they carry weight just like their non-jump counterparts, with only a 4 ounce weight penalty.

Characteristics of each jump pack come down to construction details.

See these packs, as well as other Mystery Ranch products at SOF Select, this week in Tampa, Florida.

Darley Defense Days 19 – DZSO Kit from Combat Defense Systems

Friday, May 10th, 2019

Assembled by CDS for airborne units, this Drop Zone Safety Officer kit can be customized based upon a specific requirement. For example, this kit is destined for use by an SF batallion so it contains extra sets of the Core Survival ACL-500 series Airborne Caution Light which provide portable aircraft jump lights. Not only can these be used to make mock door training even more realistic, but they can be configured in non-standard aircraft for airborne operations.

It could also be adopted by units from any service as well as units with Pathfinders who rely upon aerial delivery for resupply.

By standardizing core components and utilizing best of breed capabilities, CDS has lowered the weight significantly and increased capability. For example, they replaced the 5 lbs sledge hammer with the 5 oz Punch Hammer from Chameleon Solutions. Additionally, the kit is packaged in a Spoedbox Endurance-40 wheeled mobility container, designed to be loaded on a 463L pallet. A list of common contents is available here.

Combat Defense Systems is a small, Veteran owned business located right outside the Reilly Road Gate at Fort Bragg.

Combat Defense Systems products are available for unit and agency orders through Darley Defense.

S&S Precision NAVBOARD Rotary Now Available

Friday, April 12th, 2019

The NavBoard™ Rotary allows users to attach a wide range of consumer electronic navigation device’s, with or without a protective case. It can be stowed close to the user’s body, and deployed in an open position and viewed in either a vertical or horizontal configuration. When stowed in vertical position the NavBoard™ Rotary only uses 2 columns and 3 rows of webbing.

Features:
• Hands-free navigation
• Flip-down phone panel fits smartphones as large as the Samsung NOTE
• Available in MultiCam, Black, Toadvine and Coyote Tan

www.sspgear.com/rotary

SKD Tactical – PIG HAG Glove

Wednesday, March 13th, 2019

The new PIG HAG, a glove made by skydivers, for skydivers.

Features:
-Riser Dive Loop Abrasion Protection
-Silicon Print Palm for Enhanced Grip
-Touchscreen Compatible Synthetic Suede on Every Fingertip
-Wrist Cuff Closure direction Optimal for Relative Wind
-Fold Over Finger Tips for Comfort
-Flex Zones on Each Finger
-Enhanced Grip Protection on Thumb and Forefingers

Offered in Black, Carbon Grey and White in both Men’s and Women’s sizing.

www.skdtac.com/PIG-Skydiving-Glove