The Marines have placed a $20 million order for body armor from Eden Prairie defense contractor Alliant Techsystems.
The vests, called scalable plate carriers, are intended to keep Marines cooler, lighter and more mobile on the battlefield, compared with the previous generation of body armor. The military used training drills earlier this year to identify improvements.
The newer vests were developed by Eagle Industries, a Missouri company that Alliant Tech recently acquired. The vests and components are scheduled to be delivered to the Marines by January.
Alliant Techsystem’s press release doesn’t say how many vests are included in the order, but a recent Military Times article said they cost about $410 each, so 40,000 to 50,000 is probably a good guess.