A novel design for 3D-nanoscale fiber reinforced polycarbonate laminate for rock strike protection

Period of Performance: 01/01/2014 - 12/31/2014


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

NEI Corp.
201 Circle Drive North, Suite 102/103
Piscataway, NJ 08873
Principal Investigator


There is an unmet need in the US Army for advancing the state of the art in materials for Transparent Armor (TA), especially with respect to abrasion resistance of the exterior surface. Stones are frequently kicked up within the convoy resulting in cracked/broken windshields which need to be replaced. This necessitates the need for improved TA performance as it relates to low-speed impacts and abrasion. Nanoscale materials can offer a solution to these challenges because of the ability to engineer new structures with novel properties. Building upon our previous efforts in fabricating nanocomposites, and working in collaboration with a manufacturer of TAs, we propose to demonstrate the feasibility of a novel polymer-based nanocomposite composed of nanoscale fibers that is abrasion resistant, tough and transparent for use as a laminate over the outer surface of the TA. The propsed design will create an abrasion resistant front-facing surface and will allow absorption of the low velocity impact energy from the stones hitting the TA. The Phase I feasibility study will focus on improving rock strike and abrasion resistance, with future efforts bringing the technology through full ballistic qualification testing. Working with a manufacturer of TAs will enable rapid TRL/MRL advancement.