The US Army is set to test samples of a new flame-resistant, ghillie camouflage suit for snipers at various locations next month.
The new suit, known as the improved ghillie system (IGS), would replace the existing flame-resistant ghillie system (FRGS).
FRGS are claimed to be traditionally bulky, uncomfortable and hot in warm weather.
Program Executive Office soldier, product Manager Soldier Clothing and Individual Equipment systems acquisition expert Debbie Williams said the IGS will feature all flame-resistant properties and soldiers will receive protection from the base layer worn under the IGS, such as the Flame Resistant Combat Uniform (FR ACU).
To be worn over the field uniform, the IGS is a modular system which allows pieces such as sleeves, leggings, a veil and cape to be added or removed as and when required.
Williams further added that the cost of IGS will be lower than the FRGS, which is currently priced at $1,300, and will offer a lighter and more breathable solution than the existing suit.
Furthermore, the skeins that accompany the new suit will be made of a stiffer material, thereby making the new ghillie camouflage suit more effective at camouflaging the soldier.
Under a contract, approximately 3,500 IGSs are expected to be manufactured for nearly 3,300 snipers in service with all three US Army components, in addition to soldiers deployed with the US Special Operations Command.
Once all samples are produced, lab and field testing on the suit will begin.