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Body armor and maces to return?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Galabab, Oct 4, 2011. | Replies: 22 | Views: 3317

  1. Galabab

    Galabab IncGamers Member

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    Body armor and maces to return?

    Well im on all that graphine hype right now.
    This new metrerial is 200 times stronger than steel. This means that a 0.5 mm strong armor would be as strong as 10 cm steel. Bullets will not be able to penetrate such an armor.
    Now graphine is only made in thin layers. Im arguing under the assumption that its properties still aply in some form of compounds.

    So if bullets become harmless we could still use maces to break each others bones and knock each other out :thumbup:

    I always wondered how warfare turns out to be once materials become stronger than the means of destroying them.
  2. stillman

    stillman IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    Arms race.

    That is, people will penetrate that armor. If you wear ten layers of it, they'll develop something to go through all ten, at increasingly impressive distances too, of course.

    And, consider practicality. No one can really wear armor over every body part and still move well enough or do it cost efficiently enough for a reasonable number of wearers.
  3. Galabab

    Galabab IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    Nah thats not true strillman i can easily cover 80% of body with real scale armor.
    Plus you can probably make elastic cloth like material out of it too.

    And how can you penetrate this armor if the bullets which are already almost at the limit of their power cant scratch it?
  4. jmervyn

    jmervyn IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    Simple - spalling will penetrate scale mail quite nicely, as well as strike exposed areas. If this stuff is as great as you're hearing, I expect the initial countermeasure will be hypervelocity fragmentation.

    Still, I don't find it likely to live up to what you've heard when & if it's actually finding its way into body armor. Similar claims were made about kevlar.



  5. stillman

    stillman IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    Ok, maybe I was too jumpy. But there are all sorts of ways of defeating the armor at range. Instead of maces, why not send a rocket propelled grenade? They can always modify this and that, making the explosion hotter so it cooks people in their armor, or toxifying the air, etc. Is there anything RPGs can't do?
  6. Galabab

    Galabab IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    OK what about an overall made of a compound material of graphine with a high heat resistance?
    You'll need to hit it witch an artilery shell dierctly to kill such a soldier. Actually even mechanical means like maces would be inpractical too.

    and J, hypervelocty frags cant penetrate 10cm steel no matter how hyper it is :)
    Unless you're speaking about some artilery like huge devices which wont hit a single soldier anyway.
  7. krischan

    krischan Europe Trade Moderator

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    You cannot make a 1:1 comparison in that manner. You don't just need tough material, you also need a means to distribute the impact and kinetic energy onto a surface which is great enough to prevent the target from destruction or death. The issue is one of both energy and impact and the latter needs mass to be compensated, not toughness.

    For example, when assuming that half a meter of steel protects from impact gunshells shot by tanks, it doesn't mean that 2.5mm of graphene will protect you as well. it will probably wrap around the shell and both will go through your body and turn you into penny-sized pieces.

    There's also a difference between e.g. the bullet of a 9mm pistol and the NATO standard ammunition for rifles, a factor of about 5-10 with respect to kinetic energy. Bullets for policemen are meant to stay inside the target, so bystanders aren't hit by shrapnel while army ammunition is expected to overcome a bit resistance, like a helmet, a bit of cover... or maybe bullet-proof vests.
  8. jmervyn

    jmervyn IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    You don't get what I'm saying. Hypervelocity fragments don't have to penetrate the armor; the point is to hit weak spots where the stuff you're talking about isn't present or is not in a contiguous sheet. Elbows, midriff, neck, groin... anywhere flexibility is required. You can't up-armor infantry to the point of immobility like medieval mentality held (the same is true for vehicles, but that was forgotten in the heat of the anti-Bush HMMWV crusade).

    Current casualties from U.S. combat bears this out: we don't lose troops to sucking chest wounds, instead they die if they "bleed out" before they can be MEDEVAC'ed, and the number of limb injuries is massively higher than it used to be. After all the leftist screaming about body armor, it was found that some of it was grossly over-rated, while other types' efficacy came at significant cost to soldier maneuverability.



  9. Galabab

    Galabab IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    @krischan:
    Yes I thought bout that but didnt go into details yet. I dont think its that hard to overcome that. Just add some kind of frame to your super light graphine shirt and you're done. NO KIND OF ANY EXISTENT weapon that can be carried by one man can overcome 10cm of steel. And it just starts from there!

    @j:
    Yes my bad, I thougt you meant hyperspeed. But hyperfragmentation shouldnt be such an issue if you get a light(!) overall + a light(!) helmet. Thats the point of this material its not only strong its also light, as even small ammounts of it are this durable.
    No problem with mobility.
  10. thechest

    thechest IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    All I have to say is:

    Boom. Headshot.
  11. BobCox2

    BobCox2 IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    Shock kills and without mass it can't stop shock.
  12. zemaj

    zemaj IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    not really sure of the specs on this graphine, but I would bet a M82 Barrett firing .50 BMG-DU cartridges, even if they didn't penetrate, would really eff-up your (or more likely the poor sap you got to wear this suit's) whole week. At the very least, I am sure it would knock you right on your *** & disorient the hell out of you... to say nothing of possible concussions.

    aside from that, I would be interested in what a .45 with a 1oz mercury charge would do. I'm sure it wouldn't penetrate if this material is half of what it has been made out to be, but the repeated concussive force of said bullets popping all over would certainly have whoever was in the suit about beat to death in no time.
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2011
  13. starrise

    starrise IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    1) Not true, get a 100g projectile moving at mach 17 and it will melt a hole right through the whole plate (and probably vaporize most of it)

    2) The only reason steel is so durable is because it has a lot of toughness and ductility; it takes a lot of energy to cause steel to flow below its melting point. This energy comes from the bullet, which eventually stops the bullet. The energy goes into the steel causing layers of steel atoms to move over and around each other.

    Graphene, on the other hand, is brittle because of the nature of its atomic bonds. Yes, it's extremely strong, far stronger than any other manufactured material, but it will readily fracture if its tensile stress is achieved in the plane of the graphene, absorbing very little energy in the process. Graphene also has almost no inter-layer strength because the bonding between layers is very weak. This means layers will freely slide over one another and provide no resistance. Thus you'd also need something to keep multiple layers together, and you would need millions of layers to even get a paper-thin armor, none of which would be stuck to the others (talk about a paper-cut!)

    To use graphene as a kinetic energy absorbing barrier, it would need to be used to reinforce something that has a lot of ductility and toughness and that can hold layers together, like a thermoplastic polymer. I'd think something like polyester film would do very well. What you'd do is layer the graphene with some polyester between each layer, and fully encase each layer in the polyester. Each layer would have lots of small holes in it to allow the polyester to join together between layers of graphene. The holes, of course, would be offset between layers. You'd stop full "plug" type penetration because the load would be totally transferred to the graphene, which won't tear due to its incredible strength. Furthermore, the layers won't slide freely (and thus won't expose the holes) because any sliding would have to cause shear flow in a huge area of polyester, which would absorb a lot of energy. Instead the bullet would deform the sheet. Unfortunately because it's a thin film, it would deform significantly because, although graphene's bending modulus is enormous, the sheet is so thin its global stiffness is miniscule. This would probably cause the user to suffer tissue damage and shock through the armor from significant kinetic impacts.

    Granted the polyester would easily melt at about 500 F, but maybe it can just be used to limit shrapnel damage from bombs. As noted above, you aren't stopping a bullet's killing power with personal armor.

    As an aside: you definitely can't use graphene to directly reinforce metals, because there is the problem of galvanic corrosion. Both materials would eventually corrode, leaving the parts useless. You could coat the graphene in another substance before using it, but that is going to add some serious cost and reduce the number of layers you can use in the same thickness of armor.

    In short: sorry to burst your bubble but I don't see this being a miraculous new material for armor. I do, however, see it being used to great effect in heatsinks, computer chips and similar devices sometime down the line thanks to its great thermal and electrical conductivities.

    Edit: There it is! http://defense-update.com/newscast/0208/news/news_030208_railgun.htm
    That's what I meant (different numbers) when I mentioned (1) above. That isn't an explosion from a chemical agent behind the shell. It's not a rocket. It's traveling so fast and creating so much frictional energy with the air it is igniting the atmosphere behind it. Whether they'll actually get it working without destroying the barrel every time? Probably not.


    Last edited: Oct 5, 2011
  14. BobCox2

    BobCox2 IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    :cloud9:I Love RailgUns

    They need to be fired in Space and all the problems go away.

    in atmosphere tests are silly - fire one from orbit.
    For your armor well:
    [​IMG]
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2011
  15. Galabab

    Galabab IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    I hate you guys -__-;

    Nice "fog-thrower" bob.
  16. krischan

    krischan Europe Trade Moderator

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    There are a couple of things which can overcome 10cm of steel and which a man can carry, like a WW2 Panzerfaust which can actually pierce up to twice as much steel. They work with shaped charges.



  17. jmervyn

    jmervyn IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    The Internetz ate my previous response. It was such a pretty response, too...
    Sorry, but the problems remain. Consider starrise's response above; the material you are so enthused about may be beneficial for the armor plate inserts but it still has no flexibility at the joints. Mind you, I'm all for something that makes the plate insert lighter and stronger, as that allows the "static" portions to be larger. The current plates are definitely working well, but that doesn't mean they can't be improved; I actually wore 'double' when I was in combat because the issue vest was crappy Vietnam vintage and the plate from my vehicle crew vest was barely a 1' square.

    However, your vision of full jousting plate for the infantry will simply never happen. Medieval knights did not require visual capability of the sort needed today, nor were they expected or even capable of rising from the ground to make a 3-5 second rush. Even for the risible USSR 'human wave' tactic, wherein the soldiers simply run in the general direction of the enemy spraying their weapons on full auto, the ability to both run and to fit into an APC for transport to the battlefield requires that they have far greater flexibility than plate armor allows.

    Just for giggles, here's some 'true' images:
    You can see in both cases that the areas covered by 'plate' are certainly not large swaths. What is more important (and interesting as well) are both the joke about the new 'bulletproof underwear'already in service, and the potential of 'liquid armor'. In both cases these are specifically designed to prevent the damage from fragmentation I'm referring to.



  18. starrise

    starrise IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    Haha yeah!

    Alright, basically it boils down to: materials have a limit on strength and energy absorption. C-C bonds is the upper limit on material strength (something like 1.5 terapascals) and a material can only absorb as much energy as it takes to vaporize the material. So while you can add arbitrary energy to a target by shooting at it, the material that makes up the target can only absorb a maximal amount.

    Essentially: weapons will eventually completely outclass all materials (and they already do...if you can find me a material that can withstand ground zero of a nuclear device let me know, we can sell it and become rich!)

    I basically agree with jmervyn, and would like to expand on his point: preventing loss of life is virtually impossible in modern warfare from bullets. We should be focusing on preventing brain (and reproductive organ) damage from things like bombs. You can't fix those if they're totally or partly destroyed. Reducing the number of TBI cases would be amazing!


  19. Luckymofo

    Luckymofo IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    huge fast moving boulder, it kills and not much can penetrate it without destroying it (antimaterial sniper rifles maybe can shoot thru it)
  20. BobCox2

    BobCox2 IncGamers Member

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    Re: Body armor and maces to return?

    I don't think your stating the requirements quite right here.

    Although you did remind me of Man of Steel, Woman of Kleenex! by Larry Niven


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