Monday, October 5, 2015

New course helps officers develop mobile-friendly gear

New course helps officers develop mobile-friendly gear: Officers who guide the development of the gear that Marines will carry into future fights recently ran through a challenging obstacle course at Marine Corps Base Quantico in an effort to better understand how battle rattle affects troops' mobility.

Hundreds of infantry Marines have run the course, but Sept. 29 was the first time that requirements officers, who write the documents that shape gear development and procurement, took it on themselves.

The goal: To make sure they understand the load they're asking Marines to carry while deployed, said Lt. Col. Drew McNulty, the maneuver branch head and infantry capabilities integration officer at the Fires and Maneuver Integration Division.

The event, hosted by the Marine Expeditionary Rifle Squad — a Quantico-based test bed for improving individual equipment, was intended to prepare the officers for incorporating mobility parameters into all future gear requirements. In other words, when they write up requirements for new gear they want to see developed, they'll include mobility standards the same way they now detail attributes like weight, size and color.