Infantry: Hydration Heaven


April 2, 2009: Although combat troops have eagerly adopted the Camelbak hydration system, in place of the traditional canteen, especially for use in Iraq and Afghanistan, there were still problems with how the water bag was carried. Now that has been solved with a new design.

The camelback hydration system is basically a plastic pouch that holds one or more quarts of water, and is carried on the upper back. The user drinks water via a flexible plastic tube. Hikers and hunters like it, and have long used it, because they can take a drink without using their hands to get out a canteen, open it, take a drink, screw the cap back on and replace it in its pouch. Combat troops are particularly keen on the ease-of-use aspect. Fumbling for your canteen in a combat zone can have fatal consequences.

The new design solves a lot of the problems combat troops have had with Camelbak. The new Armorbak system can be attached directly to body armor, and allows this to be done quickly. There's also a quick release to get the Armorbak system off rapidly. The system is made or lighter (less than a pound empty) and more rugged material. The 16.25 in x 9.75 in x 4.25 inch (42 x 24.8 x 10.8cm) system holds about three liters (102 ounces) and can be worn so that you can sit in a vehicle.



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