Military Flotation Devices
Emergency flotation devices for military use may be worn by personnel such as paratroopers, combat divers and swimmers, amphibious warfighters, and naval crews to help prevent drowning and reduce fatigue in bodies of water. Many of these devices are inflatable, and use carbon dioxide, nitrogen or air to provide buoyancy.
Lifesaver flotation devices can take the form of full lifejackets, or systems based around adjustable webbing harnesses or belt-mounted pouches. They are often constructed from tough synthetic materials, designed to be as lightweight as possible, with corrosion-resistant fasteners as well as marine-grade reflective panels for maximum visibility. Some may be able to auto-inflate when the wearer enters water.
Military lifejackets and emergency flotation devices may be equipped with a variety of accessories to aid survival and rapid recovery, including whistles, LED lights, personal locator beacons, flares, and signal mirrors.
Military Life Rafts
Emergency life rafts are used by aircrew and naval personnel in case a vessel needs to be abandoned or an emergency landing is made on water. They may be rigid or inflatable, and are designed to hold varying numbers of people from one through to dozens. Some inflatable rescue rafts are integrated into the survival packs of aircraft ejector seats.
Life rafts may be constructed in open or capsule format, or may have a detachable cover that protects against harsh weather such as rain and extremes of temperature. Inflatable life rafts are often constructed from neoprene or polyurethane fabric, and are inflated with carbon dioxide, nitrogen or air.
Both rigid and inflatable emergency life rafts can be equipped with a range of survival and location aids, including emergency radio beacons, radar reflectors, search and rescue transponders, prepackaged ration packs, and flares.