Composite Metal Foam Destroys Bullets, Sees Future In Body Armor And More


Researchers at NC State have been experimenting with a composite metal foam that completely annihilates bullets upon impact. Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Afsaneh Rabiei has been developing this foam over the last few years, and as you can see in the video below, this foam is good at its job.

The bullet fired wasn’t anything to scoff at either. You’re watching a 7.62 x 63 millimeter M2 armor piercing round basically disintegrate. NC State took all appropriate precautions during their testing and all testing was carried out under the standard procedures set forth by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ). According to Rabiei:

We could stop the bullet at a total thickness of less than an inch, while the indentation on the back was less than 8 millimeters. To put that in context, the NIJ standard allows up to 44 millimeters indentation in the back of an armor.

The obvious applications for this type of foam would be body armor and vehicle armor, though a material as light and strong as this composite metal foam could see use in space travel — where light, durable materials are very important for myriad reasons — as well as for the shipping and containment of nuclear materials. Rabiei has also demonstrated the material’s strength in handling heat and fire. Depending on the cost you can envision this material being used in any number of areas.

What are some applications for this material that you can think of? Tell us in the comments below or on Google+, Facebook, or Twitter.

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