Modular Integrated Communications Helmet (MICH)
MICH stands for Modular Integrated Communications Helmet (MICH). It was developed by US army as a next generation protective combat helmets. Earlier helmets were heavier and then a need was felt to make lighter, more comfortable, closer-fitting helmets. These Kevlar based helmet enabled easy mounting of many accessories like night vision devices on front side such as the AN/PVS-14 or AN/PVS-15. It is because of this the unnecessary straining on neck could be avoided and drilling of holes through Kevlar to affix night vision mounting brackets could also be avoided. It can also be fitted with a pair of straps on the rear to keep protective eyewear in place. Helmet cover cloth can be camouflaged in various patterns including M81 Woodland, three-color desert, USMC MARPAT, U.S. Army UCP, Crye MultiCam, solid black for use with SWAT teams etc. This helmet allows maximum sensory and situational awareness for the operator. This includes an unobstructed field of view and increased ambient hearing capabilities. The helmet’s chinstrap retention system and pad suspension system provides unsurpassed balance, stability, and comfort. This system provides for proper size, fit, and ventilation. The helmet’s pad suspension system provides impact protection throughout all operational scenarios, including static-line airborne operations. The edge cut of the shell has been reduced when compared to the helmet, Ground Troops and Parachutists. This enables better situational awareness through improved field of vision and hearing. The shell provides ballistic protection. It can also be fitted with a pair of straps on the rear to keep protective eyewear in place.
The MICH is also slightly smaller than the PASGT(Personnel Armor System for Ground Troops), providing 8% less coverage; this is primarily in the elimination of the brow and raising of the sides to the point that the lower brim behind the temple is "flat", compared to the "curved" profile of the PASGT. This accounts for some of the reduced weight and allows for both greater situational awareness and less obstruction of the wearer's vision, particularly when combined with Interceptor Body Armor. Previously, soldiers had complained that the high collar of the Interceptor combined with the two-point chinstrap pushed the back of the PASGT Kevlar helmet forward, in turn moving the helmet brim over their eyes when they attempted to fire from a prone position, this is rectified in the MICH with its reduced profile and four-point chinstrap. The MICH helmet weighs near about 1.36 kg to just over 1.63 kg. Highly ballistic synthetic fabric like Kevlar is used in its fabrication and that’s why it is capable enough to provide increased protection against handgun rounds. In 2007 the Army developed and introduced an armored "nape pad" that attaches to the MICH's rear suspension system and coincided with the introduction of the Improved Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV). The goal of the armor insert is to reduce soldier deaths from shrapnel wounds to the neck and lower head. It is currently being issued in RFI (Rapid Fielding Initiative). Beginning in 2008, the Army's Program Executive Office Soldier outfitted soldiers of the 101st Airborne Division and 4th Infantry Division bound for Iraq with helmet-mounted sensors designed to gather data on head injuries caused during Improvised Explosive Device (IED) detonations.