S2PRINT Project Breaks Ground

S2PRINT Labs USARIEM Human Engineering Labs

On November 12, 2020, the new Soldier and Squad Performance Research Institute (S2PRINT) officially broke ground. SMMA was commissioned by the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), as part of an IDIQ with the New England District, to design this first-of-its-kind research and development facility at the Natick Soldier Systems Center (NSSC) in Natick, Massachusetts. The development of the Institute is a joint effort between the Combat Capabilities Development Command Center (CCDC Soldier Center) and the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine (USARIEM). S2PRINT is intended to empower both groups to perform research and apply studies to uncover ways to optimize soldier and squad performance, as well as enhance readiness for combat.

The Official Party for the groundbreaking ceremony included:

  • Brigadier General James P. Bienlien, Senior Commander, NSSC 
  • Mr. Jeffrey Hazelwood, Principal, CTA Construction Company, Inc.
  • Colonel John Atilano, Commander, New England District, Corps of Engineers
  • Congresswoman Lori Trahan, Massachusetts District 3 Representative
  • Major General John A. George, Commanding General, U.S. Army Combat Capabilities
  • Development Command Sergeant Major of the Army Michael A. Grinston, Keynote Speaker.

All officials offered brief remarks at the ceremony prior to turning over a celebratory shovel of dirt.

The Institute will be located at the Natick Soldier Systems Center in Natick, Massachusetts. The center has long been the epicenter for advanced science on soldier gear, clothing, chow, tents, individual warfighting equipment, injury prevention, nutrition needs and more. The new design provides for a wide breadth of lab types, including a large high-bay lab for large-format testing squad and soldier performance, biomechanics labs, and various virtual reality systems. Having each type of lab within one facility will enable the team to perform multidisciplinary research with increased agility and efficiency.