S6 NBC Respirator

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S6 NBC Respirator
S6 NBC Respirator with filter.jpg
A S6 respirator with a filter
Type Gas mask
Place of origin United Kingdom
Service history
In service 1966–1986 (British military)[1]
Used by See Users
Production history
Designer Defence Science and Technology Laboratory
Manufacturer Birmingham & Leyland Rubber Company
Avon Rubber
Mechanical and Chemical Industry Corporation (Turkey)

The S6 NBC Respirator was a protective gas mask issued to the British Armed Forces. It was developed in the 1950s and first issued for general service from 1966 to 1986, when the S10 was pressed into service. Currently, the S6 is not used by the British military.

It's usually worn in conjunction with the NBC No. 1 Mk III CBRN protective suit.[2]


The S6 was developed by the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, Porton Down from the 1950s and manufactured by Avon Rubber in Melksham, Wiltshire and the Birmingham & Leyland Rubber Company.[1][3] Although made obsolete by the introduction of the S10, production of the S6 continued in Turkey after the adoption of the new mask by British forces. During the widely documented Iranian Embassy Siege of 1980, the S6 is the mask seen being worn by SAS troops.

The Turkish military adopted its own version of the S6 in 1990 with the name SR10 under license by MKEK.[4] SR10 and its newer version the SR10-ST with a D12 drinking tube attached.[5]


The S6 respirator provided protection to the face, eyes, lung and throat of the wearer against all known chemical agents of that time. The filter of the respirator did not filter out carbon dioxide. The S6 features an innovative air seal around the inside of the face piece to improve the fit and comfort of the mask; a tap inside the nose cup was to allow the equalisation of pressure inside the air seal, in different climatic conditions.

The wearer's natural body heat would then warm the trapped air to inflate the air seal, thus getting a better seal around the face. The mask could also be made to benefit left-handed people, where the filter canister is positioned on the right of the face mask instead of the left. The location of the filter on the left or right side of the mask was to allow the rifle to be shouldered, aimed and fired correctly.


  • S6: Original gas mask made in the 1960s.
  • SR10: Turkish-made version.
    • SR10-ST: Same, except with a drinking tube attached.