DSM Dyneema has announced the global introduction of new innovative light weight body armor materials for use in Law Enforcement and Military protective vests. High performance Dyneema® SB71, a unidirectional (UD) grade made of Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMWPE) fiber from DSM Dyneema, was specifically designed and developed for use in ballistic vests certified under NIJ0101.06. Vests made with SB71 combine lowest possible weight with the highest protection performance. The new Dyneema advances the protection level achievable with Soft Ballistic (SB) body armor by building on a new technology platform first established with Dyneema® SB51 from DSM Dyneema in 2010.
The new Dyneema SB71 facilitates protective concepts for the lightest, most comfortable and most demanding ballistic resistant vest applications in the range of UD grades available from DSM Dyneema. It is suited for vest designs that meet the NIJ06 standard as well as other law enforcement and military standards, the new SB71 Dyneema can also be combined with trauma liners and stab resistance solutions in vests designed to meet various international standards. Furthermore, it can be used both in tactical and concealed vest designs. It also enables vests to be designed with low Back Face Signature while remaining thin, light and comfortable.
The SB71 UD grade further expands DSM Dyneema’s already strong portfolio of products based on Dyneema®, the world’s strongest fiber™, and builds on the success already achieved in this market with its UD grades SB51, SB31 and SB21.
According to Ernst Jan van Klinken, Global Marketing Director at DSM Dyneema, SB71 sets a new standard in light weight and therefore user comfort: “The new material allow manufacturers to produce NIJ 06 compliant body armor along solutions made with other Dyneema® UD grades, but with an average 15% weight saving. And moreover, all the other Dyneema® UD grade based solutions are already lighter than other non-PE vest solutions.”
SB71, which can be used to design vests meeting NIJ06 specification, has been developed in close cooperation with body armor manufacturers. Van Klinken says: “The main advantages of Dyneema® SB71 for body armor manufacturers include reductions in costs, time and material. Ease of handling leads to time and cost reductions, with less time being spent in material lay-up and cutting. And with less material being required, the environmental benefits are significant too.”
The new grade has high durability and resistance to moisture, UV rays and chemicals, characteristics inherent to UHMWPE fiber from DSM Dyneema. Moreover, vests can be easily upgraded to protect against heavier riﬂe ﬁre using class-leading inserts made with Dyneema®.
During development, the material was extensively tested by several global customers and end-users against a wide range of threats and environmental conditions and passed all stringent tests, outperforming other materials. Commander Mr. Rosso, Bureau of Weapons and Technical Materials (BAMT) French National Police said: “The new SB71 material was extensively tested by the French National Police against a wide range of threats for Law Enforcement officers. It passed all our stringent tests. Also the performance of this Dyneema® material during the environmental conditioning testing, including high temperatures, meets with our approval.”
SB71 has demonstrated that it meets the strictest requirements for ballistic protection. A key benefit is its low weight, which provides the wearer with maximum comfort, without making concessions in terms of wearer safety.
Also Ms Paulette Ogilvie, General Manager and Director for Tote Systems Australia Pty Ltd said “Dyneema® SB71 is the next generation of High Performance light weight bullet resistant materials, providing excellent bullet resistance. With SB71, we are creating a new range of Law Enforcement and Military Protective Body Armour, specifically for the Australian Army, at the lightest weights to meet NIJ threat levels. Our NIJ04 level 3A model is less than 4.5kg/m².”
Ernst Jan van Klinken concludes: “As DSM Dyneema continues to develop innovative solutions for personal protection, we remain committed to optimize our product offering and our value proposition to customers across the globe.”