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The Army is Testing Genetically Engineered Spider Silk for Body Armor

Rogue Valley

l’art pour l’art, fonction de baise
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The Army is Testing Genetically Engineered Spider Silk for Body Armor


Inserting spider DNA into silkworms yields a tough fabric that’s far more flexible than Kevlar....


defense-large.jpg
 

chuckiechan

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In WW2, they used dyed black widow silk for cross hairs in gun sites. It was strong, flexible, and easily handled and "took" the dye without problems.

Someday the damn spiders will be running the place!
 

longview

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That's awesome. But I wonder about blunt trauma / dispersion.
Unfortunately the rules of physics do not bend.
The best we can do is spread the energy over a larger area, and maybe over a greater time.
 

cpwill

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Unfortunately the rules of physics do not bend.
The best we can do is spread the energy over a larger area, and maybe over a greater time.

Do what?
 

Dittohead not!

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Unfortunately the rules of physics do not bend.
The best we can do is spread the energy over a larger area, and maybe over a greater time.

It's like being stabbed with an ice pick as opposed to a pencil eraser. The ice pick concentrates all of the force into a very small area.

Why is this in the political forum and not the science forum? Surely we're not going to hear about how spiders are all liberals now, are we?
 

chuckiechan

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If you stab your self with a sharp pencil it punctures you, if you stab yourself with the eraser is bruises you.

The idea is to prevent penetration and spread the force over a wider area allowing the victim to avoid the soft tissue injury and survive the shock injury.
 

joG

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That's awesome. But I wonder about blunt trauma / dispersion.

Yes. I was wondering how it would work after the next Great War, when we are using clubs and pointed sticks. ;)

But all joking aside. It does sound cool.
 

longview

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Sorry, if the goal is to absorb the energy from a bullet impact,
there are just a few ways to reshape the energy to do less damage.
Spread the energy over a larger area, and maybe over a larger time.
 

roguenuke

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I'm wondering why it took this long to think of this or if it has been in testing for quite some time. There was a guy a decade or more ago who created a "bear suit" that was made out of spider silk. I get that it would take a lot of silk for this, but hopefully this is more the final stages, rather than "oh, thats a pretty good idea" being thought in the last couple of years only.
 

Dittohead not!

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If you stab your self with a sharp pencil it punctures you, if you stab yourself with the eraser is bruises you.

The idea is to prevent penetration and spread the force over a wider area allowing the victim to avoid the soft tissue injury and survive the shock injury.

Exactly.

While I'm sure it's no fun to get shot while wearing a vest, it's no doubt a lot better than getting shot without one.
 

cpwill

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Sorry, if the goal is to absorb the energy from a bullet impact,
there are just a few ways to reshape the energy to do less damage.
Spread the energy over a larger area, and maybe over a larger time.
Can you explain the time?

Sent from my XT1526 using Tapatalk
 

longview

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Can you explain the time?

Sent from my XT1526 using Tapatalk
If a round has 1000 ft-lbs of energy at 100 years and is moving at 2700 feet per second.
The impact would not be a zero time window, but several microseconds.
layers and plates not only spread the energy over a larger area,
but also spread the time of the impact out.
 

Deuce

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Can you explain the time?

Sent from my XT1526 using Tapatalk

The same concept your seatbelt and airbags work with, essentially. You have to decelerate the bullet from "real fast" to zero before it penetrates your chest. Doing so with a very thin, but very strong layer of material does work, but means you have to decelerate the bullet really fast. Newton's third law is a bitch here, so your ribs may crack under the impact anyway. But, if you can slow down the bullet over a longer period, the rate of deceleration is smaller. The overall force applied is the same, but lower acceleration rates are easier to handle for any substance, your ribcage included.

There's not actually lot of force to dissipate. That recoil the shooter experiences? By definition, that force is higher than the force the victim will experience. Newton again. The recoil force is the same as the ejection force. But there's losses, and friction during the bullet's flight. Bullets only harm you because the entire force is concentrated into a very small area and very small amount of time, causing penetration. The amount of force quickly becomes irrelevant when there's a hole in an important artery. But the shooter is dissipating that energy across a palm, and through an arm, and over a larger distance because their hand/arm flexes from the recoil.
 
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