US Marine Corps (USMC) Systems Command has awarded a five-year contract to Alliant Techsystems (ATK) subsidiary Eagle Industries to produce a new load-bearing equipment system, also known as a USMC pack.

The USMC pack is designed to integrate easily with fielded torso body armour systems and allow Marines to carry equipment needed in support of combat operations.

The new system will replace the current Improved Load Bearing Equipment (ILBE) pack.

The pack system incorporates components which include the main pack, assault pack, assault pouch, two sustainment pouches, two hydration pouches and hydration carrier.

The pack also includes a hydration bladder system, sternum cinch, sub-belt, repair kit and USMC pack instruction card.

Work under the $50m IDIQ contract will be performed at the company’s facilities in Puerto Rico, with production expected to be completed by September 2012.