Chemical and Biological Defense


Information Paper

 

Mission Oriented Protective Posture (MOPP)
And Chemical Protection

 

Information Papers are reports of what we know today about military equipment and its use during the Gulf War of 1990-1991. This particular information paper focuses on Mission Oriented Protective Posture (MOPP) and chemical protection. It describes the protective clothing and equipment worn by forces to protect against possible exposure to chemical or biological agents. It also describes the levels of protection and how our forces managed these to maximize safety while preserving mission capability during the Gulf War. This is an interim report, not a final report. We hope that you will read this and contact us with any information that would help us better understand the issues reported here. With your help, we will be able to report more accurately on the events surrounding the use of MOPP and protective equipment. Please contact my office to report any new information by calling:

1-800-472-6719

Bernard Rostker
Special Assistant for Gulf War Illnesses
Department of Defense

Last Update: October 30, 1997

 

Many veterans of the Gulf War have been experiencing a variety of physical symptoms, collectively called Gulf War illnesses. In response to veterans’ concerns, the Department of Defense (DOD) established a task force in June 1995 to investigate all possible causes. The Investigation and Analysis Directorate (IAD) of the Office of the Special Assistant for Gulf War Illnesses (OSAGWI) assumed responsibility for these investigations on November 12, 1996 and has continued to gather information on MOPP and chemical protection. IAD’s interim report is contained here.

As part of the effort to inform the public about the progress of this effort, DOD is publishing (on the Internet and elsewhere) accounts and background related to possible causes of Gulf War illnesses, along with whatever documentary evidence or personal testimony was used in compiling the accounts. The following information paper will aid in understanding incidents involving protective clothing and equipment worn in the Gulf War.

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

I. SUMMARY

II. TECHNICAL CHARACTERISTICS

A. Chemical Protective Equipment (CPE) Components

B. How CPE Protects Against Chemical Weapons (CW)

C. CPE Related to MOPP Levels

D. Donning Time for CPE

III. OPERATIONAL USE AND LIMITATIONS

A. CPE Wear Time

B. Performance Degradation Caused by CPE Wear

C. MOPP Level Analysis

D. Commander’s Guidance

E. Reducing MOPP Level and Unmasking

F. Automatic Masking

G. Threat Level Color Codes

IV. ASSESSMENT OF EFFECTIVENESS

A. Test Results and CPE Adequacy

B. Lessons Learned

V. CONCLUSION

TAB A - Acronym Listing/Glossary

TAB B - Bibliography

END NOTES


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