A major military contract will mean new jobs for a manufacturer located in Vermont’s rural Northeast Kingdom.
Revision Military announced Tuesday that it will make the next-generation helmet for the U.S. Army at its plant in Newport.
The deal is worth up to $98 million, the company said, and could result in the production of nearly 294,000 Army helmets.
Eric Hounchell, the vice president of Revision’s armor business unit, said because of high-tech materials and the handling and production methods Revision spent years developing, this next generation of helmet should be more comfortable for soldiers.
Hounchell said they’re 24 percent lighter than the previous design, which translates to roughly a half-pound of weight reduced from each soldier’s headgear.
Revision said ballistics testing has shown the lighter model does not sacrifice performance.
“There’s a recognition that what we do really matters every day,” Hounchell said of the pride the Revision workforce has in knowing it is supporting the men and women of the U.S. military. “Knowing we’re making a helmet that’s going to be protecting our soldiers, knowing that if we put them in harm’s way we’re going to be able to help get them home safely—that has tremendous value to the people that work here. “
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Revision said it expects to grow its Newport workforce by about 100 people when the new contract starts this summer. The current workforce there is 186, according to the company.
“Like all Vermonters, I am incredibly proud of the men and women at Revision Military Newport for their hard work and dedication, both of which greatly contributed to Revision being selected for this contract,” Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont, said in a written statement released Tuesday.
While the newly-announced deal with the army runs at least two to four years, Revision said it is optimistic even more work will follow.
Revision’s helmet production methods should also end up benefiting other customers, Hounchell said, including law enforcement agencies nationwide and around the world that shop with the Vermont manufacturer.