While personal armor technology has surged ahead in the last decade, there has been little development of body armor geared specifically for women. The Army is looking to change that, and is partnering with a New York startup called Body Labs to transform 14,000 scans of soldiers into three-dimensional models. The models will provide statistical data on how to build armor systems that provide the greatest level of comfort and protection for the greatest variety of soldiers.
The Army’s new effort comes as the 2016 deadline for opening all military career fields nears. In 2012, the Army developed a prototype version of the Improved Outer Tactical Vest designed to better fit female soldiers.