Providing lightweight ballistic armor solutions in LATAM

A LinkedIn article previously published by Joice Leal, Regional Sales Manager Latin America, Personal Protection.

The trend towards lightweight ballistic material is one of the major factors pushing defense authorities towards next generation personal protective equipment. Countries all over the world are focusing on developing better solutions such as ballistics inserts, lightweight body armor and protective helmets that provide the benefits of comfort, body ergonomics, mobility and enhanced protection to ground forces.

Previously, armor manufacturers used ballistic materials such as steel, nylon and aramid in body armor and personal protective equipment. However, the rise of new technologies is helping to enhance the efficiency and survivability for both law enforcement and military personnel.

One example is the use of ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMwPE) unidirectional sheets, branded as Dyneema®. The performance characteristics of Dyneema® make it ideal for a variety of applications, including soft and hard armor ballistics to protect against today’s advanced and emerging threats. In addition, Dyneema® combines next-generation fiber technology and unidirectional engineering to deliver armor solutions with unmatched ballistic stopping power in a lightweight and flexible composite.

At DSM, safety is at the core of everything we do. And we believe life protection starts with selecting the right protective material, which is why we’re continually innovating our product portfolio to provide full-body protection to protect those that protect us. Protective armor made with Dyneema®, the world’s strongest fiber™, is up to 35% lighter than aramid materials, without compromising on protection.

Dyneema® material combines low weight and increased bullet penetration resistance compared to aramids of equivalent weight. That’s why 100 percent aramid solutions were abandoned by many of the world’s elite military and law enforcement personnel.

In addition, the lessons learned from the U.S. Army in Afghanistan have proven the value of lightweight bulletproof vests, as soldiers had to carry for long hours at increasingly heavy weights in ammunition, batteries, radios and other equipment. The lightweight construction of body armor made with Dyneema® helps mitigate injuries associated with the cumulative effect of daily armor use and increases situational awareness in high-risk environments, allowing the wearer to better identify and address threats.

Armor manufacturers  have also combined ballistic materials to achieve synergistic effects. An all-aramid vest might be very heavy, but a hybrid vest containing both Dyneema® material and woven aramid fabric stops projectile penetration in thinner, more wearable and more affordable vest options.

In Latin America, an increasing number of law enforcement agencies are requiring vests under level 3A based on the latest National Institute of Justice body armor standards (NIJ 0101.06) in addition to lightweight requirements - making hybrid vests made predominately with Dyneema® a perfect fit for this market.

As Sales Manager for Latin America, I am proud to provide a solution that not only meets the strict requirements of end-users in the region but is also as sophisticated as body armor options in first-world countries.

Law enforcement, first responders and military service personnel risk their lives every day to keep communities around the world safe. Dyneema® helps protect them while they protect us.

We protect people and the environment they live in.

Can DSM help with your personal protection needs? If so, please contact me directly.

Joice Leal
Regional Sales Manager, LATAM
Joice.Leal@dsm.com

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