The First Static and Dynamic Analysis of 3-D Printed Sintered Ceramics for Body Armor Applications

Report No. ARL-TR-7768
Authors: Tyrone L Jones; Jeffrey Swab; Christopher S Meredith; Benjamin Becker
Date/Pages: September 2016; 36 pages
Abstract:

Traditional manufacturing of ceramics used for ballistic impact protection presents limitations of long lead times, fabrication of complex geometries, and expensive components. Ceramic 3-D printing offers engineering-grade ceramic components in approximately 90% less time than traditional ceramics. Typical turnaround can be in days, instead of weeks, depending on the complexity of the part. This not only allows for faster time to market, but also allows for more iterations during the design process, resulting in a better end product. Additionally, 3-D printed parts can have a higher degree of complexity for weight reduction while saving on the cost of the part because of the reduction in material used.

The US Army Research Laboratory collaborated with HotEnd Works, LLC, of Oberlin, Ohio, to evaluate sintered alumina tiles produced by 3-D printing methodology. This report examines the static and quasi-static parameters (including density, hardness, and fracture strength) and semi-infinite penetration performance of 3-D printed sintered alumina. These results are compared with traditionally sintered alumina.

Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: September 1, 2016