Avon lands $33 million mask contract

Mike McNulty
RUBBER & PLASTICS NEWS

Published: July 9, 2014 12:33 pm ET
Updated: July 9, 2014 12:39 pm ET

Image By: Avon Protection Systems Inc. About 5 percent of the value of Avon Protection Systems Inc.'s M50 mask comes from injection molded plastic parts. The U.S. Department of Defense just ordered 135,000 of the masks.

Related to this story

Topics Public Policy, United States, Government/defense

Avon Protection Systems Inc. has been awarded another sizable contract from the U.S. Department of Defense to produce the firm's M50 mask systems. 

The U.S. manufacturing arm of Melksham, England-headquartered Avon Rubber P.L.C. will produce 135,000 M50 mask systems at its Cadillac, Mich., plant, according to a spokeswoman for Avon.

The mask’s plastic components, representing about 5 percent of the system’s dollar value, are produced by small businesses in the U.S. and at the company’s United Kingdom headquarters.

Injection molded plastic components on the M50 include the front module, front module cover, filter mount, canteen cap, drink coupler and head harness buckles.

Value of the pact was estimated at $33 million and falls under the additional requirements option of a 10-year sole source U.S. Joint Services General Purpose Mask program contract the firm has with the defense department. 

Production of the mask and components will commence in the near future, the spokeswoman said. The pact will provide Avon with continuous production of masks for the remainder of the financial year, she said, and “will give us good order coverage into 2015.” 

“This U.S. order demonstrates the DOD's continued commitment to Avon's market leading high technology M50 mask to meet their complex operational requirements,” according to Peter Slabbert, chief executive of Avon Rubber. 

Avon Protection's Cadillac facility houses a number of highly automated manufacturing processes, including those for the M50 mask's visor and its unique twin conformal filters, the spokeswoman noted. 

She said the plant will not need to add additional personnel or machinery to help handle production of the rubber masks. 

While the mask systems, including the pair of filters, will be made at the Cadillac factory, she said, some of the minor components and accessories will be sourced from local suppliers.

Avon's M50 chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear protective mask system was developed to counter multiple threats encountered in modern warfare and peacekeeping operations, the spokeswoman said. 

“It provides high protection against traditional chemical warfare agents, radioactive dusts, biological threats and a wide range of toxic industrial chemicals.” 

Using the latest digital design technologies and the company's materials expertise, she said, the M50 provides several unique features. 

A cast flexible visor offers wide, optically correct vision and is impact and scratch resistant, she said. 

“Close fitting, curved conformal filters offer improved weight distribution and reduced breathing resistance, as well as enhanced protection against toxic industrial agents,” according to the spokeswoman. 

“An integrated Electronic Communication Port allows for an internal microphone used for communication systems,” she said. 

The company also manufactures the M53 mask, which is based on the M50 system. 

The M53 system meets the U.S. Government Joint Services General Purpose Mask requirement for all military branches, and was developed to fill the varied requirements of special operation units. 

In 2013, Avon was awarded a $6.7 million contract by the U.S. military to develop a modified version of the M53 CBRN protective mask system to provide protection to a wide range of operators in fixed wing aircraft. The project was launched in early August and is expected to be finalized in 2017.

Plastics News reporter Kerri Jansen contributed to this article.


Comments

Avon lands $33 million mask contract

Mike McNulty
RUBBER & PLASTICS NEWS

Published: July 9, 2014 12:33 pm ET
Updated: July 9, 2014 12:39 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Report: Brands are falling short on packaging sustainability

January 29, 2015 5:19 pm ET

Packaging in general, and plastic packaging in particular, has a long way to go in terms of recycling, according to a pair of environmental groups.    More

Image

Lund adds to aftermarket auto products portfolio with buy of Bushwacker

January 29, 2015 2:49 pm ET

Lund International Inc. has expanded its portfolio of plastic aftermarket vehicle accessories by acquiring Bushwacker Inc.    More

Image

Chemtrusion, Mytex Indiana compounding plant set for expansion

January 29, 2015 1:35 pm ET

Japanese and American partners in a compounding plant in Indiana plan to expand the facility.    More

Image

Falcon Plastics expands in South Dakota

January 29, 2015 11:45 am ET

Falcon Plastics Inc. is putting the final touches on a 60,000 square foot addition that will nearly double the size of its Brookings, S.D.,...    More

Image

Plastics enter 2015 on a high note

January 29, 2015 10:10 am ET

Now that the preliminary round of December data is officially in the books, I can state unequivocally that 2014 was an outstanding year for the U.S. p...    More

Market Reports

Plastics in Automotive: Innovation & Emerging Trends

This special report newly released by PN and sponsored by The Conair Group examines current trends in the use of plastics in automotive, materials innovations and the changing landscape. It includes a review of legislative/regulatory activity impacting vehicle development and lightweighting, market opportunities & challenges for mold and toolmakers, innovative design strategies being implemented by major OEMs and suppliers, as well as a review of key indicators in Canada, Mexico, Brazil and China.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Injection Molding Market Analysis & Processor Rankings

Plastics News BUNDLED package contains our in-depth Market Analysis of the Injection Molding segment. You will gain keen insight on current trends and our economic outlook.

As a BONUS this includes PN's updated 2014 database of North American Injection Molders RANKED by sales volume. Sort, merge, mail & prospect by end market, materials processed, region, # of plants and more.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events