Maskpol informed that the helmet has been certified in an accredited laboratory in accordance with the NIJ standard which confirmed its ballistic resistance against bullets 9 mm, 357 magnum, and 44 magnum (NIJ IIIA class). Therefore, it can be sold to all customers who use this standard, which in turn opens numerous export markets for Maskpol.
The mentioned contract was entered into by the State Treasury in June last year. Based on the contract, in total 50 thousand HP-05 helmets are to be supplied to the Armed Forces of the Republic of Poland in years 2020 - 2023. However, the helmets will be intended for both Territorial Defence Forces and operational troops. Representatives of Maskpol ensure that the deliveries will be carried out as scheduled.
According to information from the Territorial Defence Forces, the representative responsible for the purchase of ballistic helmets, the selection of this type of helmet was preceded by analyses that were based on the experiences of other types of armed forces, including those abroad, as well as based on armed conflicts in recent years. They showed that it is necessary to purchase helmets that meet the requirements of the modern battlefield also for light infantry and other military specialties (such as combat vehicle crews). The purchase of the mentioned batch of the HP-05 helmets will also allow for a partial replacement of currently used 2005 helmets, which are at present the basic equipment in the Armed Forces of the Republic of Poland.
In December last year, the Territorial Defense Forces informed that 8,000 helmets of this type were already collected and intended for the equipment of light infantry subunits, 9 out of 15 brigades of the Territorial Defence Forces. They have been used in trainings and exercises carried out by the Territorial Defence Forces since their delivery. In addition, some of the batch went to the equipment of the Polish Military Contingents, where the helmets are used and tested by operational troops. Positive results of tests and first months of their use made it possible to officially accept the HP-05 helmets for use in the Armed Forces on 19 November last year.
HP-05 is the latest ballistic helmet developed by the Protective Equipment Company MASKPOL S.A. The design is a development of the earlier HP-04 helmet, and it is currently offered both for the army and special units of uniformed services. Its main purpose is to protect the user's head from direct impacts from fragments and some smaller caliber bullets of small arms. In addition to high ballistic resistance, the helmet is to be characterised with a durable shell resistant to mechanical damage.
The shell made of modern composite ballistic materials was made in the HIGH-CUT standard and is secured with the edge band. The deep undercut of the helmet allows for a better fit of such accessories as hearing protectors or tactical headphones. The mounted accessory rails, socket for a night vision device, and a masking cover with sewn tapes make it possible to install such elements as tactical lighting, a camera or night vision goggles. In addition, the helmet is fully compatible with equipment such as bulletproof vest, filtering protective garment, gas mask, individual means of communication, or eye protection devices.
The helmet is equipped with a suspension webbing that is composed of a system of shock-absorbing cushions and is available in three basic sizes with a head circumference from 54 to 62 cm. Its weight, depending on the size, ranges from 1.25 kg to 1.45 kg. Moreover, it is equipped with a four-strap head harness with a smooth adjustment mechanism, as well as a size and shock-absorbing system that allows the helmet to be precisely adjusted to the circumference and shape of the user's head.
Maskpol hopes that the next solution to be introduced into the equipment of the Polish Armed Forces will be the full-cut HBK TYTAN helmet developed under the TYTAN project. These helmets were presented by the manufacturer at the last MSPO 2021.
The article was written in cooperation with the Protective Equipment Company MASKPOL S.A.