An interesting study. COL David Maxwell, retired, comments:
What Paratroopers take to work every day. So much lightweight gear (emphasis on so much!). In all seriousness however, this excerpt from chart 21 is troubling:
•Force cap has reduced the size of the infantry platoon. The overall weight carried by the individual would be lower, but due to being force capped most rifle squads are running at 7 men. Machinegun teams are either 2 or 3 men. This leaves most platoons around 28 personal instead of the 40 they would usually have.
This is the conclusion.
•While new materials and designs have reduced the basic equipment weight carried, the addition of special of equipment i.e. Thor, Mine Hound, Gizmo, Goldie and Wolf Hound has increased our overall weight. The ability to find IEDs, caches and intercept enemy communications is a combat multiplier but they have also negated the weight saved from newer designs/materials.
•Body armor weight has gone from 17.50lbs to 28lbs due to the addition of side plates and the upgrade to E-SAPI plates.
•Due to the sensitive nature and the necessity to have the equipment on you for it to function (Thor, wolfhound etc) storing rucks in a cache at an ORP is not an option. When contact is made maneuver is difficult. AWT, CAS and Indirect fires are relied upon heavily to destroy the enemy.
Read it all, below.