DSM Dyneema (Urmond, The Netherlands) is expanding its Dyneema fiber brand with a new series of vest grades of unidirectional (UD) material. Dyneema SB51, which the company believes will create a step-change in the protection achievable with soft ballistic (SB) armor, has been developed for use in ballistic vests that combine minimum weight with high protection performance against handgun ammunition, fragments and knives. Dyneema SB51 builds on Dyneema SB21 and SB31 UD grades, all three of which are made with the ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) Dyneema fiber. The company says ballistic tests show that Dyneema SB51 outperforms aramids and demonstrates improvement of 10 to 20 percent compared with Dyneema SB21 for specific bullet and test specifications. The material also can be combined with trauma liners and stab-resistance solutions in vests designed to meet various international standards, including NIJ 0101.04 and NIJ 0101.06.
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