Antiballistics: Better defense, less expense

Armor applications grow on the strength of new markets, new composite materials.

Ongoing concerns about threats to infrastructure security are contributing to the growth of new markets and applications for armor and other antiballistic materials. In an attempt to maximize performance yet minimize cost, suppliers and manufacturers of these products are increasingly turning to designs that integrate not only a variety of materials, such as ceramics and steel and composite laminates, in a single armor solution, but also are making use of multiple reinforcement forms in composites by combining carbon, aramid, glass and other fibers in preforms and prepregs. These hybrid composites take advantage of the unique benefits offered by each material. Armor manufacturers also are taking full advantage of developments in nanotechnology to improve the performance of composite matrices. HPC canvassed the growing antiballistics community and found a number of recent product developments that illustrate the trends.

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