Novel Forming Techniques of Complex Shapes in Personnel Armor

Period of Performance: 12/10/1999 - 08/29/2001


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Bally Ribbon Mills
23 North Seventh Street
Bally, PA 19503
Principal Investigator

Research Topics


This proposal shall outline the process of modifying a standard loom to weave three-dimensional complex shapes for personnel armor. Current manufacturing techniques for textile-based personnel armor focus on constructing complex shapes from orthogonal wove fabrics with cuts and darts, reducing comfort. The solution to the above problem is to develop a robust technique which weaves a three dimensional near-net woven material for the use on female bullet resistant vest. By altering the take-up motion of a standard loom the traditional orthogonal woven material can be formed into near-net shapes. Phase one of the proposal shall supply material for parts with various diameters. The phase one parts will have various diameters across the width of the material, but the diameters shall be consistent through out the roll of material. Phase one shall also supply a mathematical formula to design a take-up system for phase two. A follow on option is included, which uses the mathematical formula from phase one and begins the design work for the "next phase" take-up system. Phase two take-up system shall supply material capable of changing from complex shapes to flat orthogonal material. Meeting requirements for a revolutionary new female ballistic protective material. BENEFITS: Net/near-net shape forming techniques for comfortable soft armor system tailored to women will result in reduced weight, reduced fabrication and replacement costs, while maintaining the ballistic integrity demonstrated by conventional armor systems. This technology and capability will have an effect upon the use of such armor system on three levels: (1) Military protective equipment (armor systems, helmets, etc.), law enforcement protection equipment, and personal protective applications. (2) Recreational sporting good protective equipment, shin pads for soccer, motor cross, hockey equipment, impact resistant helmets, etc. (3) Aerospace parts such as radoms, nose cones, helicopter rotors, jet engine containment case, etc.