DuPont (Wilmington, Del.) has launched Kevlar XP for hard armor applications. Initially targeted to military and police helmets and tactical plates used in ballistic protective vests, the material is said to offer 20 percent greater ballistic performance and increased protection, without sacrificing other performance requirements. For the U.S. military‘s Advanced Combat Helmet, which weighs almost 4 lb/1.8 kg, it reduces weight by 0.5 lb/0.23 kg. The new product combines Kevlar KM2 Plus fiber and a new thermoplastic resin that improves upon the original Kevlar technology. Kevlar KM2 Plus will be produced at DuPont’s new $500 million Kevlar facility under construction near Charleston, S.C. The site is expected to be fully operational by the beginning of 2012 and will help increase worldwide production of Kevlar by 25 percent.