3M‘s Ceradyne subsidiary has received two contracts worth $43 million combined to produce helmet systems and hard body armor inserts to act as components of the U.S. Army‘s Soldier Protection System.
3M said Tuesday Ceradyne secured a $7 million contract to deliver more than 5,300 helmet systems for SPS’ Integrated Head Protection System component.
IHPS is designed give soldiers a lighter ballistic helmet system that provides passive hearing protection and optimized blunt-impact performance.
Ceradyne also received a $36 million contract to produce more than 30,000 Vital Torso Protection – Enhanced Small Arms Protective Inserts for SPS, 3M added.
The new VTP award adds to a $34 million contract that Ceradyne received for the low-rate initial production of VTP inserts.
Ceradyne will start to produce IHPS and VTP units in 2017, while both started as research and development initiatives with multiple competitors.
SPS will replace the Army's personal protective equipment system in efforts to provide an overall weight reduction for soldiers.
Ceradyne has supplied more than 120,000 combat helmets to the Army and Marine Corps since 2014 as well as two million hard body armor inserts to U.S. armed forces.