Instavest is a cutting-edge ballistic vest from MKU. Its unique ‘one-snap’ fast d-offing mechanism makes it stand out as a serious contender for the IOTV vests currently in use by the advanced armies of the world. Instavest is claimed to have an average d-offing time of less than a second and an equally short re-assembly time, which makes it the body armour of choice for military personnel who often get trapped in hazardous and life-threatening situations where saving one’s own life becomes a priority. Instavest comes off the wearer’s body with a single pull to a hidden lanyard which disengages the vest in two halves from the shoulder, falling far apart from the body. The attached pouches, backpack, hydration packs and a host of other regular and additional equipment that a soldier carries require no additional effort to be taken off before d-offing the jacket.

Instavest is completely modular and sports the MOLLE system for attachment of pouches for ammunition, canteens and additional packs required during field operations. Instavest is ambidextrously d-off-able, and its short re-assembly time makes it ideal for battle sensitive zones where a split second can take or spare a life. Where time is of the essence Instavest stands out from its contemporaries available for the armed forces.

“The jacket has been anthropometrically designed to provide unobtrusive movement in different positions common for a soldier to take a stance in during and in combat situations,” said Mr Manish Khandelwal, segment leader of personal protection at MKU. “The instant jettison system is completely fail-safe and the vest can be worn or taken off using any of the two methods; that is, regular d-offing from above the head or using the quick release mechanism. The vest has been designed to keep compatibility with NBC gear and a host of other equipment and devices.”

He continued, “Moreover, to negate the risk of secondary fragments the quick release mechanism has absolutely no metallic parts, which is not the case with other IOTVs on offer in the market. The hidden release lanyard also allows medical personnel easier access to the casualty, which was one concern that was not addressed with the old Interceptor armour. Well, to have the real hands-on experience why don’t you join us at the ‘Split Second Edge’ launch at Abu Dhabi on the 22nd,” he concluded.

IDEX 2009

The tested version of the vest is ready to be launched amid much fanfare and anticipation during IDEX 2009 (22-26 February 2009) in Abu Dhabi. The ‘Split Second Edge’ show is due to be held in the venue during one of the show days; sources state 22 February as being the designated date for the launch. Top-ranking decision makers and technology procurement heads of a few armies looking for IOTV replacement have shown growing interest in the Instavest throughout its development time. Some have actively participated in having tests conducted in simulated war theatre environments to check the effectiveness of the Instavest system.

MKU’s spokesperson, Colonel JS Duggal, stated, “We are late entrants in the market of IOTVs but having come out with the final thoroughly tested product and one which is uniquely adaptable to many existing designs of the vests under use by various armies, all the same, at the end of the day we are happy to have evolved a far superior product which is simple, modular, repairable and replaceable. We certainly see Instavest as the next gen body armour, maintaining the pedigree of IOTV range of vests.”