yakeda Tactical equipment

Pasgt Helmet Development Brief History

December 16, 2022

Brief Introduction

Pasgt is a kind of American army standard individual helmet. The history of American Army standard steel helmet can be traced back to the first World War, when the American army had no standard steel helmet and urgently adopted the British steel helmet. The British helmet remained in service until mid-1942, when it was replaced by the famous M1 helmet. M1 helmet is the first-generation standard helmet developed by the United States. It has a hemispherical shape and a wavy curve at the bottom to increase the protective area. It is quite simple and classic. The M1 helmet survived World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War, becoming the most important symbol of American soldiers.


In the early 1970s, DuPont developed a new synthetic fiber, Kevlar, which is low density, high strength, good toughness, high temperature resistance, easy processing and molding, and the ability to absorb the kinetic energy of shrapnel is 1.6 times that of nylon and twice that of steel, making it highly promising for military use.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Army's Natick Research Lab is conducting a study aimed at reducing the weight of infantry protection systems. Infantry helmets and bulletproof undershirts in the Vietnam War used steel materials, which were quite heavy, and Natick Research Lab hoped to produce a new generation of lightweight helmets and bulletproof undershirts with new Kevlar materials to reduce the load on soldiers. However, the focus of helmet development later shifted from weight reduction to providing better protection while maintaining the same weight as the M1 steel helmet.

Determine The Shape

After determining the manufacturability of the Kevlar-29 material, a development team led by Phil Durand began taking detailed anthropometric measurements to determine the best ballistic profile for the new helmet. A research and development team led by Phil Durand began detailed anthropometric measurements to determine the best ballistic profile for the new helmet, working to improve the ballistic protection/weight ratio, increase the area of protection, and focus on fit and comfort for different head sizes. The new helmet finally emerged with a low profile, low center of gravity, increased ear protection and outward protrusion, a small brim at the front edge, and an expanded protective area to the soldier's ear and neck, plus protruding ear protection to allow ample space for communication ears.

The new helmet pays full attention to ergonomics and improves the comfort of the M1 steel helmet with a high center of gravity for long periods of wear. In addition, due to the low thermal conductivity of composite materials, more suitable for use in the desert and cold areas. The new helmet was initially available in three sizes (small, medium and large) to accommodate most male soldiers, but in the 1980s many women entered the Army and Marine Corps service, and since the average head circumference of women is smaller than that of men, a tiny size was added to the above three sizes. Storm" Norman General custom-made oversized helmet, when the federal prison factory emergency production of a batch of one thousand. Due to the suitability of wearing the helmet is very rare, so later did not produce, the size of the helmet is now quite rare.

The silhouette of the new Kevlar bulletproof helmet is often accused of resembling a Nazi helmet, but it is in no way modeled after the World War II German M35. The Natick staff pointed out that the shape of both the M35 and the new helmet were determined by the designers based on scientific data on the probability of battlefield head trauma, the interaction between the helmet and the loadout, and anthropometric measurements, and that there was no question of imitation. The guys at Natick Labs didn't like the idea of comparing their helmet to the German M35, as a Slave #5 helmet designed by the U.S. itself in World War I was rejected because of its resemblance to the German M16.

For comparative testing, the first prototype helmets were made of two materials, fiberglass and Kevlar, and two hundred of each material were made. The ballistic performance of the two materials was consistent, but fiberglass lost out to Kevlar in durability tests. These prototype helmets were easily distinguishable in appearance, with Natick applying jungle camouflage directly to their surfaces, while later officially equipped helmets were monochromatic, with four colors: olive green, black, desert yellow, and UN blue, and soldiers could change the camouflage cover cloth as needed to suit the battlefield environment. These sample helmets were manufactured by a small marine fiberglass mold-making company, the company is Geonautic (Geonautic) Ltd.

Confirm The Name

After the helmet was finalized, the naming debate began again. Natick suggested calling it Duramac, since Durand and another man named McManus were the prime movers behind the program. The military ended up calling it the PASGT helmet, which stands for Personal Armor System for Ground Troops, and the armor system refers to the new Kevlar helmet with matching Kevlar undershirt, equipped with the PASGT undershirt also developed by Natick. 

PASGT ballistic helmets are produced by several manufacturers in accordance with military standard MIL-H44099A. The helmet is not designed to resist direct fire from rifle bullets, but to defend against direct fire from fragmentation weapons such as grenades, mines, mortar shells, bombs, and 9 mm pistol and shotgun shells. The helmet is fitted with a two-layer suspension system that keeps the helmet 1.3 cm apart from the head, maintaining good ventilation while effectively reducing external shock to protect the head from concussion. The head protection area (medium) is 1,129 square centimeters, and the helmet can withstand (V50 ballistic performance test value) 663 meters per second fragmentation speed, and can withstand 190 ℃ high temperature. In comparison, the V50 value of the old M1 steel helmet is about 300 m/s, and the PASGT offers 121% more protection. The helmet is fixed at two points, with adjustable lengths on both sides of the jaw strap and the buckle set on the left side. In addition to the helmet hood, an elastic band called the "cat's eye band" is attached to the outside of the helmet. In addition to securing camouflage, the cat's-eye band also has a fluorescent piece on the rear side, which makes it easier to follow when marching in columns at night.


After the U.S. military equipment, the revolutionary PASGT helmet has been widely adopted by other Western countries. Our new generation QGF-02 bulletproof helmet can also be said to be a PASGT-style helmet, QGF-02 helmet using our own developed aramid fiber (Kevlar), shape borrowed from PASGT, but above the ear protection is rounded rather than straight. In order to reduce the production cost, QGF-02 helmet has only one helmet type, and the head circumference can be adjusted by the suspension system. The QGF-02 helmet has better protection than the PASGT helmet of the first generation of the U.S. Army, and its overall weight is 1.45 kg, which is lighter than the smallest size of the U.S. Army PASGT. The QGF-02 helmet began to be equipped with troops in Hong Kong in 1997, and gradually became the standard helmet of our army.

Following the development of the PASGT helmet in the 1970s, non-metallic composite soldier helmets have gradually become the trend, and a safe, comfortable and aesthetically pleasing helmet can undoubtedly greatly enhance the morale and confidence of soldiers.



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