Nondestructive Characterization of Low Velocity Impact Damage in Transparent Laminate Systems

Report No. ARL-TR-5582
Authors: Raymond E. Brennan and William H. Green
Date/Pages: June 2011; 30 pages
Abstract: Advanced transparent materials are used to improve protection efficiency for lightweight vehicles and Warfighters in applications such as face shields, riot gear, and vehicle windows. If any damage occurs, the ability to withstand single or multiple hits from various threats could be compromised. While these issues are most likely to occur due to impacts from high velocity projectiles during combat, they may also be the result of low velocity impacts from collisions, severe environmental conditions, or foreign object debris. In this study, transparent materials are tested by comparing baseline conditions to experimentally controlled damage states. Destructive testing including air gun and sphere impact testing are used to simulate low velocity impacts in the field. Characterization of the damaged state includes visual inspection, cross-polarization, x-ray, and ultrasound techniques. The combination of destructive testing and characterization of the resulting damage can help to establish a damage acceptance criterion for transparent materials used in protective systems.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: June 1, 2011