Latest Kevlar EXO fabric is lighter, more flexible and bulletproof

Latest Kevlar EXO fabric is lighter, more flexible and bulletproof
Kevlar Exo is lighter and more protective that previous versions
Kevlar Exo is lighter and more protective that previous versions
View 1 Image
Kevlar Exo is lighter and more protective that previous versions
Kevlar Exo is lighter and more protective that previous versions

DuPont has debuted a new version of its famous bulletproof Kevlar fabric called EXO at this year's United States Army Rangers' Best Ranger Competition at Fort Benning Georgia. The company says it is the most significant aramid fiber innovation in over 50 years with not only better ballistic protection, but it's also lighter, more flexible, and more heat resistant.

Mention Kevlar and it's likely to bring up images of bulletproof vests, but the material has many more applications. Blankets of it protect the International Space Station from micrometeorites, it reinforces composite boat hulls, is spun into cordage, woven into sails, formed into helmets and fire-resistant clothing, used as a substitute for asbestos, and turned into everything from hockey sticks to tennis rackets.

Small wonder that 55 million tonnes of it under various names are produced worldwide every year.

Technically, Kevlar is an aramid fiber, which is short for aromatic polyamide – a synthetic polymer material formed from aromatic rings of six carbon atoms arranged along the axis of the fiber. Put simply, this makes the end result very strong, abrasion resistant, heat resistant, nonconductive, and non-inflammable under normal conditions.

According to DuPont, Kevlar EXO not only shows improved best-in-class ballistic protection over the previous versions, it is also lighter and more flexible, allowing soft protective vests made out of it to fit better and wear more comfortably. It's also heat resistant to up to 500 °C (932 °F) and is highly durable without a significant loss in performance after five years.

"We’ve spent over a decade developing, refining and perfecting Kevlar EXO, and the result is an industry altering platform that has catapulted our life protection capabilities to a whole new level," said Steven LaGanke, global business leader, DuPont Life Protection. "Developed and tested by leading materials experts at DuPont, Kevlar EXO offers never-before-seen ballistic and thermal performance while also providing a flexible and lightweight solution that empowers users to operate at peak performance. Whether for military members, law enforcement officers, private security or emergency responders, pound for pound, Kevlar EXO users can better manage energy output even during the most demanding physical tasks."

Source: DuPont

The bad guys will probably have these in spades with the cops out of luck.
David Cowlishaw
I like this for my 1986 submission to NASA (before the first shuttle blew up, stalling their response for the design contest for the ISS) as a resin or cement, or vitreous "fiberglass" construct for the Geometrix building system. It will really assist in preventing catastrophic blow-outs of a modular quick assembly LEO space habitat containment. OH, NASA agreed with my plus' (can load and launch a 40 cellular room panel and connectors system in one shuttle bay load (a rhombic dodecahedron, as in a garnet or magnetite Chrystal with cubic spaces (and air locks) on the 6 cubic points. Still working on "on orbit assembly time" that put my concept out of the competition, in favor of the tin can design that had been on the drawing boards for over a decade. Stay tuned, I might just do it! :D
no specs. on how much better, or real life examples, did it go from say a 44 mag. to a .460
@DavidC, good luck with that. We hope your design makes it into space. Would it catch all or most of those nasty, super-fast micro-meteorites which plague the ISS?
I'm saddened that the DuPont release didn't cover the impact differences. When a bullet hits the Kevlar vest, =something= has to absorb it or it continues until the kevlar hits the skin and breaks ribs, etc. until the force is absorbed. Flexible is great for comfort, but won't that also make it less able to absorb impacts?
@vince, Yeah, with the cartels in the new fabric, cops will simply have to start aiming at their melons alone.
Louis Vaughn
You know, the next step will be Kevlar EXO penetrating rounds, and/or high energy beams (10,000+ deg F)
We're so close to Star Wars; it's not funny. Really!