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During the mid '80 - early 90's, Swiss AF evaluated a number of Chemical/ Biological Warfare (CBW) pilot protective systems.


The main evaluation criteria the chem/bio protection effectiveness and the compatibility/ integration with Swiss AF aircrew and aircraft operations.


Among the systems taken into consideration were  Swiss Huber+ Suhner SM-90 protection mask, British AR-5 and CLARE (at the time under development); US made M43, MBU-13/P and PIHM (Protective Integrated Hood Mask) / TAERS (Tactical Air Eye Respiratory System). 


As usual, implementation of a number of equipment and aircraft modifications were foreseen, such as replacing breathing regulator and ejection seat hoses with "chemically hardened" ones and replace the NBC hood original ones with Swiss made filter canisters.


Here in picture a MC-2/P protective mask. 

The MCU-2/P was a protective mask used by the United States Air Force and United States Navy, originally designed for the US Army as the XM-30 mask. In December 1982, the U.S. Air Force took over the XM-30 mask development.

In 1983, the U.S. Navy requested the first masks off the production lines since the Army mask was no longer in production and the Navy had none. The Air Force agreed, except to get 5,000 masks to support a 1985 Technology Demonstration.

The MCU-2A/P Series Mask is designed to protect the face, eyes and respiratory tract of the user from tactical concentrations of chemical and biological agents, toxins and radioactive fallout particles.


The mask has a unimolded, silicone rubber face piece and a single flexible lens bonded onto the face piece. The large lens gives the user a wide field of vision. It has a single filter and two voicemitters, one on the front of the mask for speaking directly into a telephone or radio handset and one at the side to allow personnel nearby to hear.


A nosecup with two inlet valves fits over the nose and mouth. It directs incoming air across the inside of the lens to reduce fogging. The mask is provided with a drinking tube that connects to a canteen. 

Unfortunately, the MCU-2/P's silicon rubber facepiece was found to be susceptible to corrosion from blister agents, rendering it of little value on the battlefield.       


Because of the test results, most likely also for technical, logistical and financial reasons, none of the evaluated systems was put into service.

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