The US Air Force (USAF) is set to adopt the Operational Camouflage Pattern (OCP) starting 1 October, moving to a single combat utility uniform.
The airmen who have serviceable OCPs could initially continue to wear the uniform, which will be eventually rolled out to the total force over the coming months and will be fully adopted by the USAF by 1 April 2021.
Claimed to be an upgraded battle-tested utility uniform, the OCPs could help eliminate the need to maintain two separate uniforms, for in-garrison and deployments, the USAF officials said.
USAF chief of staff general David L Goldfein said: “We looked at all utility uniforms currently in our inventory to find the best-of-breed. We spoke to and listened to airmen on this, and the OCP was the clear choice.”
“The uniform works in all climates – from Minot to Manbij – and across the spectrum of missions we perform.
“It’s suitable for our airmen working on a flight line in Northern Tier states and for those conducting patrols in the Middle East.”
The new uniform has been designed to display distinctive airforce features, with squadron patches reintroduced to a USAF uniform in order to revitalise the squadrons.
Goldfein added: “Unit patches express squadron identity and heritage – something our airmen are incredibly proud of and want to celebrate.”
The USAF also intends to outfit the Basic Military Training, Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps, and Officer Training School with the uniform.
Goldfein further added: “This celebrates joint warfighting excellence as OCPs will become the joint combat uniform for airmen and soldiers while patches and nametapes will identify our respective services.”