Industry News

NetComposites-led ‘LightArmour’ Project to Develop SRP Composites-based Armour

Published on 2015-10-08. Author : SpecialChem

A new DUTE (Dual Use Technology Exploitation Cluster) project, ‘LightArmour’, has been launched to develop armour based on a combination of Self-Reinforced Polymer (SRP) composites and lightweight ceramics. The project will also develop armour systems that are designed to be flexible; providing greater coverage and better ergonomics.

Fig. 1: Armour

The 27 month project consists of 7 partners from across the supply chain and the knowledge base. The project is being led by NetComposites in collaboration with XeraCarb, C-Tech Innovation, Pro2Pro, Sheffield Hallam University, Cranfield University and Airbus Helicopters.

Project outputs will demonstrate the technologies suitability for protection against a variety of both civilian and defence-related threats, from light firearms to improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and can be used in applications ranging from lightweight body armour to vehicle and aerospace protection, specifically the complex-shaped parts found in helicopters.

The technology is expected provide a much-needed alternative to existing heavy and inflexible systems. In addition, a novel moulding system will be developed to produce unique flexible or articulated mouldings for a variety of uses.

Dr Matthew Thornton, NetComposites Project Manager, said: “We are really excited to be working with such a great combination of organisations from across the supply chain and the knowledge base. We expect the project to result in new products, new moulding equipment and techniques and the chance for the UK to maintain its world leading position in innovative armour products.”

About NetComposites

NetComposites Ltd was established in 2000 in Chesterfield in the UK, initially as a news and information portal for the composites industry. Since then, the company has grown year-on-year, its activities broadening to include applied research and development, conferencing and training.
Today, NetComposites remains a privately-owned company with around 25 staff (including 8 PhDs) and a well-equipped development center.

About DUTE

DUTE is an Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI) funded cluster that will encourage technology transfer between Defense and Civil sectors. The DUTE Innovation Cluster will create 142 jobs, safeguarding a further 192 through a joint investment by Industry and Government of £10.3million. DUTE has been created as an output from the Defense Growth Partnership’s Value Chain Competitiveness Team. Marshall has led the 14 partner cluster, which includes SMEs, Mid-Tier and Primes from industry working alongside academic institutions.

Source: NetComposites

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