Enhanced Combat Helmet (ECH) is a United States Marine Corps program to replace the combat helmets of the U.S. Army, Navy, and Marines using thermoplastics instead of the ballistic fibers used on the current generation combat helmets. We’re hearing from the field that the ECH, outfitted with the old Team Wendy helmet pads, cause the same problems seen with the ACH and GI helmet pads. Original estimates were the ECH would be 35% lighter, but as tests showed it could not meet specs, the weight was increased to that equal the ACH/MICH.
Advanced Combat Helmet (ACH) is based on the MICH design and provides an improved helmet to soldiers, replacing the older PASGT. It provides increased 9mm bullet protection. Comes with pad suspension system and the four-point chinstrap. Primary users: originally Army, now all services.
Lightweight Helmet (LWH) was developed for the US Marines to replace the PASGT. Looks very similar to the PASGT, but has a four-point chinstrap built-in and is about 6 ounces lighter. Originally it had a web suspension system and being upgraded to padded suspension. Primary users: Marines and Navy FMF.
Modular Integrated Communications Helmet (MICH) is a special operations lightweight ballistic helmet that incorporates excellent ballistic and non-ballistic protection with the ability to interface with most tactical headsets and mikes used by SOF. Standard with a pad suspension and four-point chinstrap. Primary users: Spec Ops.
Personal Armor System for Ground Troops (PASGT) helmet (also called the K-Pot) is made of and has been in use since 1983. The Kevlar helmet, available in five sizes from extra small thru extra large five sizes, provides ballistic protection for the head from fragmenting munitions and handgun bullets. Comes with a strap suspension system inside the helmet and two-point chin strap. Can be upgraded with a four point chinstrap and pad suspension system. Primary users: being phased out, with the only two remaining helmets in military service being the Army-style ACH/MICH and the Marine LWH. An occasional National Guard or Reserve individual may wind up in-country with the older PASGT, but that likelihood is diminishing rapidly.
Ops-Core FAST helmets: Some in the Special Ops are not enthusiastic about this helmet as it provides less coverage for impact/blast and ballistic protection than the ACH/MICH or LWH helmets.