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  SoldierMod Volume 13 - June 2014
Volume 13 Articles

Country flagTactical Assault
Light Operator Suit

News from USSOCOM

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While the fictional Tony Stark continues to wow movie goers as “Iron Man” on the Silver Screen, the US Department of Defense still takes the idea of an armored “super soldier” a bit more seriously.

U.S. Army photo by Conrad Johnson, RDECOM Public Affairs
U.S. Army photo by Conrad Johnson, RDECOM Public Affairs

In 2013, the U.S. Special Operations Command issued a Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) for proposals and research in support of the development of Tactical Light Operator Suit (TALOS). Solicitation Number: USSOCOM_RFI_ST(TALOS).

TALOS is a USSOCOM effort to provide special operation forces (SOF) with enhanced mobility and protection technologies in a fully integrated assault suit. Some of the potential technologies planned for TALOS research and development include advanced armor, command and control computers, power generators and enhanced mobility exoskeletons.

According to a November 2013 Press Release “USSOCOM is interested in receiving white papers from a wide variety of sources, not just traditional military industry but also from academia, entrepreneurs and laboratories capable of providing the design, construction and testing of TALOS related technologies,” said Jim Geurts, USSOCOM Acquisition Executive. “The intent is to accelerate the delivery of innovative TALOS capabilities to the SOF operator.”

You can see a video relating to the TALOS Program at:

The goal of the BAA is to stimulate collaboration between the government, academia and industry representatives on the TALOS effort. Prior studies and analysis have determined a number of technical challenges exist for the SOF equipment that require improvements for missions into the future. Those challenges include trade space between weight, protection, power, and mobility, cost and system component integration.

The BAA will remain open until September 3, 2014, however in a recent interview with the Navy Times, Adm. William McRaven, Chief of US Special Operations Command, said his team is in the final stages of procuring TALOS prototypes, the first of which, “will be delivered to SOCOM in June.”

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