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Polystrand have launched their ThermoBallistic-H armour panel, a hybrid thermoplastic material made with both E and S glass fibre.
The new hybrid material is made in a proprietary Polystrand process that impregnates continuous fibre with a polypropylene thermoplastic resin. The laminate combines E Glass and S Glass reinforcements in a 0°/90° orientation. Layers of ThermoBallistic-E and ThermoBallistic-S can be combined into ThermoBallistic-H panels that achieve specific performance levels. Previously, Polystrand reinforcing materials were made exclusively with either E Glass or S Glass.
“By combining two types of fibre reinforcement we can achieve higher threat levels while substantially reducing the overall cost of the composite,” said Ed Pilpel, president of Polystrand. Polystrand say that their system can achieve US National Institute of Justice (NIJ) threat level 3A while saving 40 percent in material costs.
“For NIJ threat level 3A, ballistic panels made with ThermoBallistic-H reinforcement can achieve equivalent performance compared to panels of the same areal density made with the HJ1 process for thermoset materials, which has been considered the industry standard for many years,” he added. “The new hybrid material can also be used in applications for higher NIJ threat levels – 3 and 4, for example – but additional plies of material are needed and the savings are still substantial.”
Pilpel says the placement and orientation of the fibres is a factor in the way the two materials work together. ThermoBallistic-H reinforcement puts E Glass on the strike face and S Glass as the backer to capitalize on the reinforcement’s ability to absorb the energy of a projectile.
“This is the composite material military leaders have been looking for,” continued Pilpel. “They have been asking for lower-cost composite materials to armour-up more vehicles and develop other new protective applications. Now they have it.”
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