MA-3B ARES (Armored Response Environmental Suit) - The MA-2B is one of the newest and most powerful in a series of heavily armored suits (MA stands for Manned Armor) that use integrated augmentation and an armored robotic exoskeleton. Unlike previous versions of the design, like the MA-1A1 and MA-1A2, the 3B features improved automation and shielded electronics, gleaned from research on the alien Sectopod.
The ARES Powered Armor stands just over eight feet tall, three and a half feet wide at the shoulder, and weighs in at over 340 pounds, minus the pilot. However, despite its large size and weight, a pilot can run at a sustained speed of 20mph with minimal exertion, and can make unassisted leaps of 4 feet vertically. Its hands, arms, and legs are nimble enough to also engage in melee combat, should it be necessary, and it is capable of using all forms of conventional, Laser, and Plasma weaponry.
The ARES features an improved interface and OS, as well as a superior sensor suite, computing system, and Nuclear/Biological/Chemical protection. Armor and mobility are unchanged. Most importantly, the 3B is the first in the series to use an integrated psionic amplifier, freeing the pilot's hands from carrying a cumbersome psiamp apparatus. This makes it an ideal Command/PSI as well as Assault Suit when the flight options of the MA-3C MARS are not deemed necessary, or when Elerium-115 supplies are low.
Protection wise, the innermost layer lies directly between the pilot himself and the inner alien alloy exoskeleton of the suit. It consists of a spongy layer that form fits the pilot's body when activated, and also serves the purpose of insulation, thermal cushion, and impact absorption. Thicker than the layer in PASGT armor, it serves an identical role, and monitors the pilot's physical status, heartbeat, injuries and temperature. Like in the previously mentioned armors, embedded on the outside of this layer are small coolant tubes that aid in regulating the soldier's body temperature.
The next layer is composed of a non-permeable rubber-analogue that serves as a backup for the main environmental system controls, and makes the suit completely environmental even in the event of a breach. Like in PASGT armor, it is also the layer responsible for power channeling as it is embedded with hundreds of feet of fiber-optic and copper power line to connect the various armor systems together. The third layer is a complex fiber-mesh weave of conductors and coolant fluids, to provide additional protection from intense heat.
The layer after this is composed of a quarter inch of a special areogel that, when exposed, will flow into the breach and harden when it comes in contact with the air. This layer allows the armor to absorb all but the most severe impact and explosive attacks while keeping the user protected. It also acts as a self-sealant in case of attacks that get through the final, ballistic layer. The outer layer of armor is made up of double layered .22-inch thick alien alloys and reinforced ceramic plates. This layer also has built in sensor systems, including a laser-sensor (blares an audio warning to the soldier when he/she is lased by any known targeting laser), a proximity sensor, radar-warning indicator, limited radiation shielding and detection, and a missile warning sensor that notifies the soldier of missiles or other 'hot' objects are being launched (basically an IR device, note that this does not work on Blaster Bomb projectiles which use gravity waves to move).
The Electronics Suite includes an integrated Combat / Targeting Computer that is Smartlink capable. This system calculates, stores, and transmits data onto the faceplate of the power armor and assists in the tracking of targets. The system also has a database of targets and has the ability to identify them reliably. This includes enemy units, as well as civilians, friendlies, and native creatures. Lastly, it also has a map of area based on sensor data and known topography. The computer also handles the radio, compass, clock, life support, and the available modular enhanced imaging options.