A ceremony to commemorate this accomplishment was held today at BAE Systems’ Protection Systems business in McKee, Ky. where the components are currently manufactured and approximately 10 million of the components originated.
As the primary field equipment system for the U.S. Army, the MOLLE system is made up of a variety of load carrying equipment including vests, pockets, backpacks and hydration systems, all of which are configurable for specific mission requirements. The system is a highly modular platform which enables warfighters to carry gear and supplies critical to their mission. The basic MOLLE system is the Core Rifleman configuration, which is comprised of a Large Assault Pack, a variety of general purpose and magazine pouches as well as a hydration system.
“The MOLLE system provides users with a completely customizable set of equipment which allows for readiness, mobility and efficiency of the warfighter,” said Don Dutton, Vice President of BAE Systems’ Protection Systems. “Reaching a milestone, such as the production of 15 million components, is an exceptional achievement for BAE Systems and its employees. Our employees at our McKee facility come to work each day knowing that the work they do is helping our warfighters overseas.”
Attending the celebration were Rep. Marie Rader (Kentucky), Rep. Harold Rogers (Kentucky), Maj. Gen. Ed Tonini, the Adjutant General for the Kentucky National Guard and Sgt. Maj. Charles Williams of PM Soldier Protection & Individual Equipment.
“Job well done to the fine BAE Systems employees hard at work in Jackson County. This is a remarkable achievement,” said Congressman Hal Rogers. “Not only are these McKee sewing technicians making our region proud through exceptional craftsmanship, but they’re helping our warfighters stay well equipped and battle-ready with lightweight, adjustable gear. This work not only creates good-paying jobs in southern and eastern Kentucky, but builds the security of our nation.”
BAE Systems first developed MOLLE in 1997 in conjunction with Natick Soldier Systems Command, winning a contract to support a modernization effort within the Marine Corps. Designed with the intent to improve load carrying equipment effectiveness and sustain heavier loads, MOLLE quickly became the system of choice for various service organizations.
BAE Systems is a leading provider of warfighter protective and load carrying equipment in the United States, producing a significant portion of the nation’s body armor, tactical vests, combat helmets and load carrying systems. Not only is the company focused on the design, development and production of leading edge survivability products, its integration of advanced materials into manufacturing, rigorous product testing, and field trials support the company’s focus on the men and women who serve in the Armed Forces.