Home' Army News : September 29th 2011 Contents NEWS 3
Army September 29, 2011
THE responsibility for maintaining the airborne
insertion (parachute) capability will soon transfer
from Forcomd to Socomd.
The transfer marks a significant milestone in the
history of Army's parachute capability.
CA Lt-Gen David Morrison said that the Army
had raised, developed and maintained a conventional
parachute capability for the past 31 years.
"I acknowledge the fine efforts of all those who
have served as part of, and in support of, the para-
chute capability," Lt-Gen Morrison said.
Initially raised and based on a company in 6RAR
in 1980, the parachute capability was enhanced and
the responsibility transferred to 3RAR in 1983.
During its time as parachute battalion, 3RAR was
supported by a wide range of units from 1 Bde and
3 Bde, the Parachute Training School and 176 AD
"I also acknowledge the ongoing support of the
Air Force in maintaining the parachute capability,"
Lt-Gen Morrison said.
"The parachute capability has been an important
part of the ADF's contingency force since its incep-
tion and will continue to be into the future.
"However, times have changed and there is a need
to re-balance Army to meet the challenges of the
"3RAR now faces many new challenges,
including the move to Townsville, deployment to
Afghanistan and playing its part in Army's future."
Lt-Gen Morrison said the transfer of the parachute
capability to Socomd meant the ADF maintained a
robust and flexible entry capability while ensuring the
Army was able to meet the challenges of the future.
It's official: Responsibility for maintaining the
parachute capability will soon move to Socomd,
CA Lt-Gen David Morrison has announced.
Photo by Sgt Neil Ruskin
SOLDIERS in Afghanistan will
soon have better protection from
IEDs thanks to three specially
designed vehicles on loan from
Two Husky protected mobility
vehicles (PMV) with ground pene-
trating radar and one Buffalo mine-
resistant vehicle with a robotic arm
for checking suspected IEDs are set
to be operating early next year.
The vehicles will be used by
sappers to detect IEDs and other
explosive hazards, including mines,
creating safe pathways for soldiers
patrolling Uruzgan province.
Sappers can use the Buffalo's
robotic arm to examine suspected
IEDs from behind the vehicle's mine-
resistant, ambush-protected armour.
Currently sappers have to manu-
ally examine any suspected IED.
The Buffalo also boasts a high
definition 'Gyrocam' camera,
Added protection from IEDs
mounted on a mast eight to 10m
above the vehicle and gives a 360
degree view of the terrain.
Gyrocam has a thermal imaging
capability and high quality zoom
to detect IED indicators from a
distance. While the Husky's ground
penetrating radar allows IEDs to
be detected with low or no metal
content that other equipment might
Defence Minister Stephen Smith
was happy with the deal and said
it would boost the Army's defence
"It's a very good cooperative
venture," Mr Smith said. "We will
utilise what is, in anecdotal terms, a
road clearance capability and capac-
ity to add to our anti-IED measures."
The vehicles will be on loan
for around 12 months while work
is underway to assess the possible
acquisition of a permanent system.
Safety first: Two Husky PMVs are on loan from Canada.
By Sgt Andrew Hetherington
SOLDIERS deployed to
Afghanistan will receive a spe-
cial pair of undies to trial in
October, as part of a new soldier
protection initiative developed
The underwear is the first
layer of a two-tier pelvic protec-
tion system under investigation by
Diggerworks for issue to soldiers
deployed on Operation Slipper.
The underwear being trialled,
which looks like a pair of bicy-
cle shorts, is designed to protect
soldiers from genital, pelvic and
femoral arterial wounds, from
the main threat soldiers face in
The former CO of MTF 1 and
Director of Diggerworks, Col
Jason Blain, said the undergar-
ment would significantly reduce
unwanted debris entering wounds
sustained after an IED detonation.
"The composition of the
undergarment contains silk,
which can be very hard to cut
and was designed to mitigate the
fine dirt and shrapnel particles
entering the body and preventing
infection after an IED explosion,"
Col Blain said.
"British soldiers and US
Marines already wear it in
Afghanistan and as part of the
trial our soldiers will wear them
outside bases during patrols."
MTF 4 soldiers will also
receive the garment to train with
before they begin their mission
rehearsal exercise from next
Tier two of the protection
system, a groin wrap, worn out-
side soldier's pants, will also be
trialled in Afghanistan during
A Diggerworks Systems
Engineering Manager, Stuart
Lawrie, said the tier-two wrap
further enhanced the protection
afforded by the tier-one undergar-
"It's designed to be worn in
higher threat environments and
looks like a sumo wrestler groin
roll and attaches to the soldiers
belt," Mr Lawrie said.
"It's made out of a conven-
tional ballistic cloth and provides
roughly the same protection as
the soft ballistic inserts in the
Tiered Body Armour System
"It will provide multidirec-
tional protection against a blast,
as most people who are hit are on
or above the device when it goes
off."The trial will determine how
the wrap will integrate with the
Diggerworks is also investi-
gating ballistic ensembles that
provide a wider area of protec-
tion to the body for use by dis-
mounted EOD teams and high-
risk search engineers.
Wear protection: Troops deployed to Afghanistan will receive a special set of underwear (inset) designed to protect the pelvic area
from blast wounds.
Main photo by AB Jo Dilorenzo
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