Soldier survivability in military vehicles operating under adverse conditions is expected to be substantially improved by a new teaming arrangement between US industry leaders Global Seating Systems (GSS) and Techno Sciences, Inc. (TSI) to combine their leading technologies.

Exton, Pennsylvania-based GSS and Beltsville, Maryland-based TSI have teamed to integrate TSI’s adaptive magnetorheological (MR) energy absorption technology into GSS’s military seating system. The combination of TSI and GSS technologies will result in the ultimate military seating system – dramatically increasing the level of Soldier protection.

A recognized leader in the military seating market, Global Seating Systems (GSS) has provided seating solutions for many Army and USMC vehicle platforms including BAE, Force Protection, General Dynamics, and Textron. GSS has also retrofitted many vehicles in the Iraq and Afghanistan theatres.

TSI is a high-technology company that has been developing MR seat suspension systems that adapt in real-time to provide significantly enhanced shock and vibration mitigation for improved Soldier readiness and protection. TSI’s revolutionary seating systems have already been retrofitted and demonstrated in rotorcraft seats (SH-60/MH-60 Seahawk), and is currently being retrofitted into seats on the USMC’s Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle and seats for the US Navy’s high-speed watercraft.

A military seating system must protect Soldiers against all threats – crash, rollover, vibration, and IED/ mine blast. Ideally, the seat should automatically adjust to both the occupant’s weight and the force of the dynamic event, reset and readjust to accommodate the secondary slam down event. Such a “smart” system maximizes survivability of any event for any size or weight occupant. The TSI technology will be introduced into GSS’s Generation 2 recoverable seats. The combined TSI – GSS technologies offer the following features:

  • An occupant weight sensing system that automatically tunes the seat’s blast energy absorption to the occupant
  • A resettable system that accommodates both the initial blast and subsequent slam down event
  • A blast level sensing system that automatically tunes the seat’s energy absorption to both dynamic events – initial blast and subsequent slam down
  • Integrated 5 pt belts
  • Fully compliant to FMVSS 202/207/208/209/210/214 for All Belts To Seat (ABTS) seating applications
  • Vibration isolation system that maximizes troop readiness and situational awareness
  • Fully adjustable up/down, front / back, backrest recline options
  • Wall mounted, floor mounted, roof mounted mounting systems
  • Removable backrest sections that accommodate different gear options
  • Ergonomic designs
  • Reduced weight

The seats have been designed with Pre-Planned Product Improvements (P3I) such that any improvement can be retrofitted onto previous generation seats.

Christian Hammarskjold, President of GSS, stated “This is a substantial improvement over competitive solutions that employ passive, single stage, non-recoverable seating technologies. These “tuned” systems are designed for a specific threat and occupant weight; they are unable to accommodate different weight occupants, different blast forces, and are not resettable- a necessary requirement for ground vehicle blast/ slam down events. We are extremely enthusiastic about our Generation II seats and the future of the TSI MR technology.”

Dr. Greg Hiemenz, Director of MR Technologies of TSI, stated “For the first time we will be able to optimally protect every Soldier of every size, in every vehicle, and in every hazard condition. With the introduction of our smart sensing systems into GSS’s robust seating systems, we are able to dramatically decrease the injuries associated with dynamic events in a military theatre of operation.”