Friday, May 28, 2010

[Resources] Bullet-Proof T-Shirt

As a sort-of-follow-up to my Linothorax post (and which the Bat in the Attic blog actually gave some specific ideas about how to use it in a game as well as some props to me - Thanks, Bats!) , researchers at the University of South Carolina are working on a bulletproof t-shirt. The cotton material is treated with a boron solution then baked in an oven. The heated cotton fibers of the shirt turn into carbon fibers that react with the boron treatment. The result is a boron carbide fabric that is lightweight, flexible and damage resistant.

“The currently used boron-carbide bulk material (used for body armor) is brittle. The boron-carbide nanowires we synthesized keep the same strength and stiffness of the bulk boron carbide but have super-elasticity. They are not only lightweight but also flexible. We should be able to fabricate much tougher body armors using this new technique. It could even be used to produce lightweight, fuel-efficient cars and aircrafts.”

If we can produce the beginnings of lightweight, flexible body armors now, what will 10 years bring? And how will that change science fiction armor in your game? That's up to you to decide but this is a pretty cool concept that I'll use.

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