(ORDO NEWS) — Researchers at Johns Hopkins University in the US are working on a new type of armor for the police and military. It is based on an ultra-light shock-absorbing material.
The invention does not yet have its own name. This is an experimental development based on elastomers. Such liquid crystal polymers are already widely used in robotics to create artificial muscles.
What is known
- The interest of scientists is caused by the extraordinary elasticity of elastomers, which allows them to absorb a large amount of energy without breaking.
- They created a structure of rows of rigid elements held together by strips of elastomers placed at an angle.
- This architecture allows the structure to compress when receiving a load and straighten out afterwards.
- The base element was multiplied and a multi-layered “pie” was built, which was then tested.
- The shock absorber successfully withstood impacts from projectiles weighing from 2 to 7 kilograms at speeds up to 35 kilometers per hour without any damage.
- As the number of layers increases, the load-bearing capacity increases.
- A four-layer construction has twice the energy absorption density of a single-layer construction.
Cushioning material for helmets
The bonus is the extremely low weight of the material, it is comparable to polystyrene – that is, almost weightless. But at the same time, already in the current version, it is quite suitable for use as a substrate for armor or, for example, as additional protection for vehicle bumpers.
Scientists have already established contacts with a company that produces helmets for the military, police and athletes – the first commercial application of the novelty will be products specifically for them.
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