The metal foam which the new material is based on is produced by passing gas through liquid metal. The result is a foamy structure with integrated metal elements. The material competes in strength with metal but is much lighter.
The novelty has already passed several tests. In one of the experiments it was fired at with 50-caliber rounds. The new material was able to absorb about 75% of the impact force of simple shells and 78% that of armor-piercing rounds. The projectiles’ velocity varied from 500 to 885 meters per second, but they bounced off the armor in some places.
According to the researchers from the NC State, the innovation will be useful in military vehicles manufacture. Thanks to the new armor, they will become lighter and faster and, consequently, use less fuel.