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Avon Protection wins orders and unveils total protection CBRN system

20th June 2024 - 09:55 GMT | by Damian Kemp in Paris


Avon Protection’s Exoskin, left with FM50/M50 mask and quarter zip suit and right with FM53/M53 mask and full zip suit, on display at Eurosatory 2024. (Photo: Author)

The Eurosatory exhibitor has been clocking up the contract awards in recent months and one of the more notable wins was for a respirator contract worth up to US$47 million from UK MoD but the focus is also on opportunities with police and security forces.

Underwater breathing systems and chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) protective equipment manufacturer Avon Protection has announced another sale of its MCM100 Multi-Role Rebreather and unveiled the Exoskin total protective suit system for security and military users at Eurosatory 2024.

The MCM100 is designed for special forces and military operations and to provide enhanced diver safety and extended mission duration for operations such as explosive ordinance disposal and mine-countermeasures (MCM).

The latest sale was to the Royal New Zealand Navy and according to the company is in the low “tens of units” and it follows an order from Germany which was in “the low hundreds [and the New Zealand order] takes the number of users close to 100.”

Eurosatory 2022: Avon Protection eyes data integration into CBRN equipment

Avon Protection wins respirator contract worth up to $47 million from UK MoD

A major product for the company is its FM50 (non-US designation)/M50 (US designation) mask and it is this system and the FM53/M53 combined filter and self-contained breathing (SCBA) system, which form a key part of the new Exoskin. There are more than three million M50/FM50 in service.

The FM53/M53 system is designed to be manually switched between filter and SCBA and is described by the company as for “first responders, special forces and military” for law enforcement, riot control, drug raids and events involving suspicious powders as well as defence applications.

Avon Protection product and strategy director Justin Hine said the company’s concept for Exoskin was “to provide a single point of responsibility for the creation of a fully enclosed protection outfit focused on integrated design and protected intellectual property.”

Aside from the mask the Exoskin has a lightweight suit (S1), gloves (G1) and boots (B1) and these are designed to be fully integrated and fully enclosed.

“We took part in the US [Defense Threat Reduction Agency] Chemical Biological Operational Analysis exercise in April this year with 50 users using the suit. At the end participants are asked [theoretically] which of the equipment they used they would like to take home and they picked the [Exoskin] outfit,” Hine said.

“We looked to take an holistic approach with boots, gloves and suit and it is vitally important to get the integration right to provide that protection.

“The lightweight suit provides protection at a lower threat level and it is highly breathable which means there is less stress on the wearer. It also has articulated arm and leg and sections for kneepads to improve operator comfort.”

The Exoskin suit comes in two designs, a full zip or a quarter zip, with Hine saying the former passes the NATO AEP-38 standard for CBRN clothing while the latter “exceptionally passes” the requirements.

Shephard's Eurosatory 2024 coverage is sponsored by:

BAE Systems
Damian Kemp


Damian Kemp

Damian Kemp has worked in the defence media for 25 years covering military aircraft, defence …

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