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Any Marine can affect latest warfighter equipment

By Lance Cpl. Daniel A. Wetzel | | October 3, 2011

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Marines took part in the acquisition process of the Corps by sharing field knowledge and experience with developers on what works and what doesn’t.

Developers showcased new equipment and technologies during the 31st Modern Day Marine Military Exposition at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va., Sept. 27-29, 2011.

The expo plays a vital role for research and development of equipment by bringing developers face to face with those who have used the products.

 “It’s nice to hear from Marines who have used our equipment,” said Greg Guenther, manufacturing supervisor for National Solar Technologies. “We’ve received great feedback at this event.”

NST has made improvements to their products in the past by creating lights and solar panels that are bullet resistant and easier to deploy. This was done because of feedback from consumers, Guenther said.

Modern Day Marine began in 1981 when the Marine Corps League wanted support of an event that would focus on the defense industry’s response to the actual needs of the Corps.

This year, the exposition focused on enhancing expeditionary forces. It showcased products and services of more than 500 companies supporting the Marine Corps’ land, sea and air operations.

Countries from around the world, from Arabic to European nations, were represented.

Much of the equipment used by Marines today in Afghanistan and around the world were first showcased to military leaders, operations planners and acquisitions managers at previous expositions.

“A company wouldn’t be here unless the Corps is buying from them or looking to use their equipment in the future,” said Charlie Braisley, Marine veteran and the Modern Day Marine show director.  “The mission of Modern Day Marine is assisting the Corps to procure the best products and services to help the warfighter.”

Exhibits filled three large tents and included many outdoor displays and vehicle technology.

Since more than just Marines and military personnel can use the equipment, a special invitation was issued to law enforcement personnel to attend this year’s expo.

Braisley said having the expo at MCB Quantico is an ideal for law enforcement and Marines since it’s home of the Marine Corps Combat Development Command, who develops warfighting concepts and determines the Corps’ needs.

“The most important thing that a Marine can do here is engage with the industry,”Braisley said. “Marines should tell industry members why or why not a certain product helps the warfighter. If it doesn’t help, challenge them to do it better in the future.”

ITT, a company that builds counter equipment for Improvised Explosive Devises, recently upgraded their gear and teaching modules based on feedback from Marines, said Nicholas A. Albano, senior principal systems engineer with ITT.

The expo allows Marines to impact what a company has to offer and what the Marine Corps may acquire in the future.


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