Natick Soldier Systems Center, MA$
US Army Soldier Systems Center, Natick is located
in Natick, Massachusetts. Natick is one of the western suburbs of
Boston and is approximately 18 miles from downtown. The installation
is primarily a research laboratory and is very small; the
installation itself is about sixty acres.
The Command was formed in October 1998 when U.S. Army Soldier Systems Command,
Natick, MA and U.S. Army Chemical and Biological Command (located at the Edgwood
area of Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD) merged to form U.S. Army Soldier and
Biological Chemical Command.
The Command has four major subordinate activities located at Natick: Natick
Soldier Center (formerly U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Center,
Natick - NRDEC); Integrated Material Management Center (formerly Sustainment and
Readiness Directorate); PM-Soldier Support; PM-Force Provider. There
is also a Headquarters Detachment. The command also has the Project
Manager-Soldier (PM-Soldier) located at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.
Natick Soldier Center. The focus of the center is on developing,
engineering and testing field feeding systems and field rations, ballistic
protection, shelters, organzational equipment and air drop systems.
Integrated Material Management Center provides logistical support for the
Command's programs and product managers.
PM-Soldier Support is responsible for management and oversight for the
development, production and deployment of Army field feeding systems, aerial
delivery systems, unit/organizational equipment, field service equipment and
PM-Force Provider manages the project which developed and manages the
containerized and highly deployable 'tent' city which provides climate
controlled billeting, dining facilities, latrines, laundry, dining facilities in
modules for 550 soldiers. Modules have been successfully deployed in
Bosnia and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
In addition to serving as the Headquarters for Soldier Systems Center, Natick
the installation also houses the US Army Research Institute of Environmental
Medicine and the Navy Clothing Textile & Research Laboratory.
One hundred thirty soldiers and approximately nine hundred fifty civilian
employees are responsible for carrying out the missions at Natick.
Since the installation is so small, it does not have the typical range of
support services found on larger installations. For example, there is no school
on the installation and the nearest commissary is twenty miles away at Hanscom
Air Force Base. On the positive side, the installation is situated in a
beautiful location, has small housing areas scattered among the surrounding
towns, is served by some of the best public schools in the country, and is next
door to one of the most interesting cities in the nation. It is a
vibrant and exciting place to live and work.
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