Published: 22nd November 2013
British Combat Body Armour
The British army currently uses Osprey body armour to protect their troops in battle. When in combat soldiers need to be protected against a variety of ballistic threats including being able to stop an AK47 armour piercing round. Suitable armour would be flexible and durable and will not restrict the wearer’s movement. On top of all this the armour must have a decent temperature control and transpiration system and be comfortable enough to be worn for long periods of time in extreme conditions.
Osprey Body Armour
After been put through rigorous testing and analysis in 2006 the British Army released the Osprey advanced body armour to their forces. The Osprey advanced body armour system is modular built so that soldiers can decide on the whether they would like additional protection for extra body parts. The basic armour covers the torso and stops near the shoulders. Extra protection can be applied to the upper arms the neck and throat.
The Osprey armour system has webbing tape so that extra storage can be applied to the vest when needed and can be taken off easily when it’s not. The vest also allows for two trauma plates to be attached, one to the front and one to the rear of the vest. These plates protect the wearer against direct rifles rounds. Having these plates on protects the wearer from blunt trauma from a bullet impact. This is when a bullet is stopped by soft armour but the bullet actually carries on going into the person pushing the armour into the person’s body. This can leave some trauma to the tissue and can be quite serious.
For comfort the vest should be worn with the UBACS shirt, made from Coolmax™ the UBACs helps keep the wearer cool and aide’s better transpiration when soldiers are working in warm environments like Afghanistan. The armour itself is expensive compared to previous models used, with one unit costing around £1000!
Osprey has taken a lot of criticism and has be subject of many concerns over its capabilities. The early batches took scrutiny regarding the hard armour plates sizes compared to other models along with how this system is a lot heavier than previous systems particularly when you have to consider additional weight will be added when other accessories are attached.
Other systems are used by the British Army including the Kestrel body armour which is a little more rigid in design to the Osprey but still offers reasonable protection as it still incorporates the combination of hard and soft armour. Most of these modular military based systems can be bought by civilians now online from military armour manufacturers like www.SafeGuardArmour.co.uk in the UK or even DHB Industries that provide the interceptor armour for the U.S Army. Purchasing this way means you get a more tailored military system.