ISF Powered Assault Armor is the most advanced infantry bodyarmor avaliable to the forces of the Interex Security Forces which utilitize it. An extremely powerful and technologically advanced battle exoskeleton designed to enhance human combat performance on all scales, only a precious handfull of these suits exists within the military of Interex, and represent the nation's most successful attempts to increase the longivity and lethality of the individual soldier. These suits of armor are the trademark feature of the Interex Armored Infantry, who spearhead the assaults of Interex military units, and use highly-effective and devestating "burn-in" tactics to surprise an enemy force.
These suits are extremely rare, with no more than 10,000 believed to exist. Each unit cost upwards to about $7.5 million dollars each (or ₢2.14 million credits). The program alone to even develop the armor cost some $546 billion dollars (or ₢156 billion in Interex credits). To that end, the government of Interex only authorizes the usage of these suits to only the most veteran of the ISF's forces, and more so is the fact that these suits are rarely if ever seen outside of Interex. Thus, the world has little, if any knowledge of these powerful weapons aside from scant rumors in the Tibetan countryside, where rumors are often considered mere myths.
The armor consists of numerous components designed to aid its wearer in his duty; each of which are extremely vital to the success of the combatant.
The outmost layers of the armor make up what is the most effective feature of its protective system: a series of powerful electro-magnets which produce enough force to negate the power of bullet. Powered by the suit's fusion battery core, the electro-magnetic systems are located in vital areas of the armor, namely around the heart, head, stomach, and back, and several other areas such as the legs. The system is also capable of deflecting even heavy weapons fire such as RPGs, which though the impact is deflected in full, the force of the resulting explosion will still rack the wearer of the armor. The defense system works by using the force of the enemy attack against them, meaning that a strong enough punch will trigger the reactive defenses. However, slower attack will completely bypass the protection; though fighting a six-foot tall enemy in power armor tends to discourage people from gauging their attacks.
Tritium-Alloy Armor Plating
ISF Powered Assault Armor plating is composed of tritium alloy, a very lightweight but extremely resilient material that is also found in the heavier Scorpio Battlesuit. This armor plating covers sections of the wearer including the legs, shoulders, abdomen, back, chest, and helmet; its primary function is to protect against small arms projectiles such as AK-47s, FN FALs, and similars devices, as well as other munitions like plasma or high-explosives.
While also serving as armor plating, shoulder pauldrons benefit the USIF Powered Assault Armor's wearer in ways other than protection. Their interior contains advanced micro-computer systems that help the armor better manage its already efficient power allocation. The armor's pauldrons possess highly efficient micro-computers that are awarded to soldiers upon reaching certain ranks (Sergeant, Captain, and finally General). These superior pauldrons permanently replace lesser ones on a wearer's armor, allowing increasingly more power to be diverted to upgrades for the armor systems. Thus, the higher a wearer's rank, the more efficient their pauldrons are at helping to manage power and thereby granting more energy for more deadly armor upgrades.
Synthetic Muscle System
Beneath the immediate surface of the armor is the suit's synthetic muscle, utilitizin decades of research, materials, and hard-earned money. The system consists of hexagonal-shaped titanium-reinforced nanofibers, all of which are connected into larger cords, which in turn strung together with even more cords to create the complex muscle system. The nanofibers react to constant electrical stimulation from the armor, causing them to move with the wearer. The synthetic muscles greatly improve the strength, speed, and reaction time of the wearer, allowing him to lift very heavy objects by himself and excel in close combat against otherwise superior opponents such as tanks.
The synthetic muscle system covers the entirety of the wearer, protecting them from weaker projectiles, such as cased rounds, that would otherwise kill them outside of the armor. The system can accept nanites which can repair damaged parts of the suit, and keep it in peak condition. Recent advances in technology allow the armor to utilize self-replicating nanites, and the armor constantly deploys them when damage is done to the suit, allowing for full regeneration of damage without a repair tool. However, this feature is reserved for only the most senior of the military with access to these suits. Additionally, it greatly dampens EMP attacks against the suit and allows the soldier to engage in Overdrive Mode, enabling him to reach speeds of up to 75 mph.
Most importantly, the synthetic muscles are able to completely absorb extremely intense G-forces and high-velocity impacts. This makes the synthetic muscle system vital to the wearer's survival whenever he is "burning-in", as it absorbs the G-forces that would otherwise render the wearer unconscious when plummeting from thousands of feet above the ground at extremely high velocities, and then absorbs the tremendous force generated from the otherwise fatal impact upon their landing, keeping the wearer unharmed from such a high-speed drop. This system also allows the wearer to jump from any height without fear of damage.
Beneath the synthetic muscle is a layer known as the Nuclear Biological Chemical (NUBIOCHEM) System. This layer is composed of a tight-fitting but flexible nanocomposite bodyglove. It helps seal out any and all external substances from the wearer, such as poisonous air, liquids, radiation, and even a hard vacuum. It also seals the suit's built-in oxygen, food, and water supplies from external particles, in order to facilitate long-term operations in any environment. The NUBIOCHEM system is also augmented with ultraviolet radiation emitters within the armor to further kill off any particulate organisms.
The final and innermost layer is a soft biolayer that sits directly on the wearer's skin. This layer acts as an extra impact cushion and helps regulate temperature, fit, and moisture. It also provides a further tight, yet comfortable seal. Inside this layer are multiple sensors linked to the suit's computer; these sensors monitor the wearer's biometrics.
Protecting the wearer's head is an intuitive helmet, officially known as the ISF XS4 Tactical Helmet. It contains its own NUBIOCHEM system, augmented with advanced air filters unique to the helmet. These filters take in air from outside the suit and filter out toxins, bacteria, viruses, and even radiation via a High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filtration system. The filtered air (pure oxygen), can be breathed in immediately by the wearer or stored in the armor's compressed oxygen canisters for later use. This helmet also contains a Heads Up Display (HUD), which shows information such as mission data, an ammunition counter, supply and oxygen levels, as well as the Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) display, which gives real-time information about where both enemy and friendly units are located. This is aided by the use of the Interex recognition chips, which are implanted int citizens at birth. Also in the helmet is the most advanced multi-spectral communications gear available to the Interex Armored Infantry.
The helmet consists of multiple layers, the first of which is a tritium-alloy outer layer identical to the armor covering the rest of the suit. This outer layer includes two small panels which cover the wearer's eyes. These panels can be retracted back into the rest of the helmet to allow the user to see directly out. On these panels are blue eye slits, two on each panel, accounting for a total of four. The wearer does not see straight through these slits, since they are actually optical cameras that are connected to the wearer's HUD. Underneath the armored layer is an orange-colored visor which displays the HUD. The visor is made of a type of durable bulletproof glass. The final layer is a mask that goes over the wearer's mouth. This mask supplies the wearer with oxygen, food, and water directly from the armor's storage areas.
The armor also contains a variety of features designed to help facilitate combat supremacy for the Armored Infantryman.
One of the armor's most useful features are the rechargeable propulsion jets that are integrated into the back of the armor. When the wearer activates them, two panels on the suit's back extend out and propel him through the air. The jets can be turned on and off at any given time as long as there is energy within the jet's battery. The jets are useful for scaling buildings and rough terrain or ambushing enemy soldiers. When at full energy, the jets can immediately propel the wearer at more than 100 feet into the air, or can be used to levitate the wearer if he constantly fluctuates the on/off switch, which can be useful when aiming in mid-flight.
Another feature that aids the armor's impressive mobility is its rechargeable "Overdrive" Mode, which increases the speed and strength output of the armor's artificial muscle system, and is used to propel the user in a rampant and continuous sprinting speed of nearly 75 miles per hour. The Overdrive boost is vital for catching any fleeing targets or for covering vast terrain in a short amount of time, and it can be used often thanks to its large energy capacitors and fast recharge time. If used in conjunction with the jetpack, the wearer can cover immense amounts of terrain, as well as fly to extreme heights.
One of the most advanced pieces of equipment on the armor is the onboard computer. This computer regulates the Heads-Up Display (HUD), as well as the armor's link to the Tactical Network (TacNet). This TacNet computer displays military communications, squad updates, and all tactical information related to the current operation. The TacNet also contains a motion-sensor tag system that tracks all known enemies and allies and displays the signatures on a miniature map. Additionally, the TacNet is synced with a requisition database to help soldiers select the deployable they want, though the requisition demands of officers have far more priority compared to the average soldier.
The system also includes a complete overview of the user's medical status and internal suit temperature. The TacNet can link with a micro-computer stored within the soldier's weapons that provides info such as weapon accuracy, weapon type, and the amount of ammunition left both in the soldier's overall ammo reserves and within the wielded weapon's clip. All of this information is shown on a simplified, yet organized HUD format in order to prevent information overload during the heat of combat.
The computer can sync its systems with distant command ships or bases via an encrypted "Armor Feed". This allows command staff to track an operation via live footage and relevant data taken from the view of the helmet's wearer. The computer has also been shown to intelligently and automatically intercept and decrypt specific short-range radio messages, such as those of enemy officers issuing orders to their troops.
In conjunction with the onboard computer, the armor is able to use another unique feature known as Lock-On. This feature allows the armor to sync with any ISF weapon and optimize targeting calculations so that every shot fired hits the enemy even at extremely long range. If the enemy is in motion, the armor will physically orient itself (but never to a point that harms the wearer) so that the their weapon is directly facing the target; no matter how fast a target moves, it will always be acquired and open to attack.
Unfortunately, Lock-On has a few drawbacks. It can only sync itself with a weapon for a limited amount of time, after which the ability's capacitors need to recharge; an enemy must also be scanned long enough prior to Lock-On for the armor to initiate the ability, which can often take too long in the most heated battles. But this can be mitigated if the enemy target has already been scanned by other allied soldiers or structures, in which case Lock-On is instantly usable. Also, the enemy must constantly be within clear line-of-sight for Lock-On to acquire its target; any obscurity in view, such as the enemy hiding behind a large object or rounding a corner, will disrupt Lock-On as it fails to register the target.
Lastly, though Lock-On potentially allows the soldier to make every shot count, the effectiveness of Lock-On is still dependent on the weapon itself in the situation- a nimble infantry unit can still dodge slow non-homing missiles from a missile launcher, and a shotgun's wide pellet spread is still ineffective at long range even though the weapon is directly facing the target.
Automated Medical System
A very important feature of the armor is its Automated Medical system (or Automed for short). The Automed system contains various miniature medical devices that allow it to heal the wearer if he is wounded, and keep him alert and active thereafter. It can rapidly heal burns, puncture wounds, lacerations, broken bones, and other serious injuries. The Automed System also dispenses painkillers and stimulation cocktails which help the soldier inside to stay alert. Another function of the Automed system is that it houses millions of controlled partially self-replicating nano-sized artificial antibodies (nanites) which can fight off numerous forms of virus and bacteria. The nanites also aid the Automed system in rapidly healing wounds, allowing soldiers to quickly recover from, and fight through, even the most serious injuries. These beneficial nanites continue to replicate themselves inside the wearer of the armor, so wearers that have been exposed to their armor's nanites are immune to all sicknesses their armor originally fought off, and can recover from the most grievous wounds in a surprisingly short time.
To power its highly advanced systems, the armor utilizes a miniature plasma/fusion reactor, housed in the back of the armor. This reactor uses a fuel (primarily tritium or deuterium) and fission to create electricity. The fuel is kept in a plasma state, and is then injected into a magnetically contained charge. The Interex have developed their fusion technology to a point that the fusion generator is able to make full usage of its fuel supply.
The energy is stored in a "main" capacitor. This capacitor contains a large amount of energy; whenever it is needed, the energy can be transferred to smaller capacitors (for example, those powering the jetpack or artificial muscles) which will use the power. When the main capacitor is nearly empty, the reactor fires again to recharge it. Any leftover plasma from the explosion is stored in a magnetic container and used by the armor's plasma shields. The reactor does not need to be refueled with more fuel for many years, allowing the soldier to operate for extended periods of time.
Portable Survival Pack
One last feature of the armor is the extremely small yet high capacity survival backpack. Located between the jetpack thrusters, the backpack houses the weapons for the soldier (some can be folded for more compact transport), ammunition, and weapon cleaning nano-tools. The backpack also carries two weeks worth of food and water for long-term missions. The food is compressed, freeze-dried, and stored in small compartments on the armor for easy access. The water is kept in cooled, sterile tanks for when the soldier needs it. Also contained in the backpack is a portable survival shelter.
Given the numerous roles the powered armor must perfom in, there many version of the armor in usage by the ISF.
This is the standard issue armor used by all Armored Infantry units in the USIF. All armor variations originate from this type. It possesses no features outside of those already described, and is the most numerous of the powered assault armor in use.
This variation of the Standard Armor uses slight modifications for better performance in arctic conditions. It has a simple white camoflague, and possesses no modifications outside of the ones needed maximize artic combat capabilities for the wearer.
This variation retains all of the original's basic features, with further modifications made to facilitate extended covert operations. It is distinguished by its woodland green camouflage pattern and red dotted helmet optics, as opposed to the blue slanted optics present in other ISF armor variations. It should also be noted that the eletro-magnetic emitters have been dimmed for covert operations, however this has no effect on the performance of the armor.
This variation is reserved exclusively for use by the ISF Armored Infantry's most elite and battle hardened veterans, such as the soldiers of the Chancellor's bodyguards. The armor's black color scheme and enhanced performance serve as both an intimidating reminder of, and practical enhancement to, the wearer's refined lethality in battle.