LightArmour, a new Dual Use Technology Exploitation Cluster project, has been launched to develop armour based on a combination of Self-Reinforced Polymer (SRP) composites and lightweight ceramics.
The project consists of seven partners from across the supply chain and the knowledge base. The project is being led by NetComposites in collaboration with XeraCarb, C-Tech Innovation, Pro2Pro, Sheffield Hallam University, Cranfield University and Airbus Helicopters.
Project outputs will demonstrate the technologies suitability for protection against a variety of threats from light firearms to improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and can be used in applications ranging from lightweight body armour to vehicle and aerospace protection. The technology is expected provide a much-needed alternative to existing heavy and inflexible systems. In addition, a novel moulding system will be developed to produce unique flexible or articulated mouldings for a variety of uses.
The LightArmour project is part of a £10 million jointly funded programme between government and industry, the Dual Use Technology Exploitation (DUTE) cluster will help boost growth by linking UK manufacturers, particularly SMEs, from the civil and defence sectors to draw on the best technologies of both to deliver game-changing solutions for customers. It is expected to create more than 140 jobs and safeguard a further 190 jobs across 15 partners up to 2019. DUTE has been created as an output from the Defence Growth Partnership’s Value Chain Competitiveness Team.