Air Force Receives Next-Generation Ballistic Helmets Amid Monderization Overhaul 

The Air Force on Thursday received the first order of next-generation ballistic helmets for security forces as part of a modernization effort, the service said in a press release

The new helmets replace the Advanced Combat Helmet that Airmen have been wearing since the mid-2000s. 

Master Sgt. Markus Nelson, an Air Force Security Forces Center (AFSFC) equipment manager, said the new helmet is "lighter, cooler, has better padding and comes with a built-in railing to fit accessories, such as night-vision goggles and tactical communication equipment." 

Airmen of the 71st Security Forces Squadron (SFS) at Vance Air Force Base, Oklahoma, were recently the first in the service to strap on the new helmets. 

"It is actually really quick to put on and easily adjustable, allowing me more time to check my Airmen and make sure everyone's gear is on straight," said Senior Airman Craig Smith, a 71st SFS Airman. "The biggest improvement I noticed is it's lightweight and if I take a hard turn in a Humvee, I know I'm not going to break my neck."

Master Sgt. Darryl Wright, 71st SFS logistics and readiness superintendent, said the new helmet is the most agile kevlar he's strapped on his head in nearly two decades. 

"I just got back from a deployment and this helmet is made for hot areas like that; and even where it's not as hot, the mobility and light weight of the helmet makes a significant difference in what you can do," Wright said.

"Even back here at home when we do readiness exercises, we bring all our fighting gear, including the helmet. Exercises get you prepared for the fight and having next-generation gear like this helmet improves Vance (AFB's) security readiness."

Inside The Air Force: Next-Generation Ballistic Helmet

Along with next-generation helmets, the AFSFC initiative to modernize forces includes high-tech body armor and protective gear, new weapons, and upgraded communication systems. 

"We're identifying salient characteristics of the best individual equipment industry has to offer at the best value to achieve standardization across the force," said Lt. Col. Barry Nichols, AFSFC director of Logistics. "This effort is instrumental in keeping Defenders throughout the security forces enterprise-ready and lethal with the procurement of the most cutting-edge and innovative equipment available to accomplish missions safely and effectively."

Who is making all of this possible? 

Well, President Trump, of course - plowing more than $2.5 trillion of taxpayers funds into the military on one of the biggest spending sprees in history. 

"We've spent $2.5 trillion over the term in office, my term," Trump recently said. "That's over three and a half years -- think of that $2.5 trillion. I took over a depleted military, old equipment, broken equipment."

Meanwhile, Russia and China continue their military modernization efforts as a looming global conflict could be on the horizon.