TITLE: Extended Service
Life of Transparent Armor
ACQUISITION PROGRAM: Marine
Corps Tactical Wheeled Vehicles including LVSR, MTVR, MRAP, MATV, HMMWV and
OBJECTIVE: Develop extended
life Transparent Armor (TA) by using innovative materials, design,
manufacturing processes, and test methodology to reduce maintenance and
Armor, in some form or fashion is used in all armored military vehicles. Sizes
range from small side windows and vision blocks to large windshields up to 48
cm by 102 cm. It is constructed of multiple layers of glass laminated together
with a spall liner to protect the occupants inside the vehicle. TA is
expensive and the replacement of delaminated TA is currently costing the Marine
Corps $15M to $20M per year. Unfortunately, current TA has a relatively short
life-span as it typically delaminates in 3-4 years resulting in significant
cost and reduced vehicle readiness. For some platforms, TA is the most
unreliable component on the vehicle.
Much of the recent research has been focused on reducing the weight of TA and
the use/development of exotic materials. While this work is needed and
important for the future of TA it fails to address an apparently inherent flaw,
delamination. The Marine Corps needs TA that lasts longer and is inexpensive,
having little to no impact on initial purchase costs and a reduction in overall
ATPD-2352T is the current purchase description for TA. This specification sets
the requirements that must be used in developing new TA. Unfortunately,
ATPD-2352T falls short in identifying a test to address long term durability or
service life. A test methodology shall be developed to predict the useful life
of TA with respect to delamination.
This topic seeks to explore innovative and alternative TA designs for military
vehicles. Of particular interest are concepts that satisfy the following
• Increase service life to 6 years by reducing the propensity of delamination
• Reduce time and increase ease of removing the glass stack from the frame to
• Develop accelerated aging test methodology
• Decrease lifecycle costs
The Phase I effort will not require access to classified information. If need
be, data of the same level of complexity as secured data will be provided to
support Phase I work. The Phase II effort will likely require access to
classified information, and the contractor will need to be prepared for
personnel and facility certification for access and maintenance of classified
information and material.
Work produced in Phase II may become classified. Note: The prospective
contractor(s) must be U.S. Owned and Operated with no Foreign Influence as
defined by DOD 5220.22-M, National Industrial Security Program Operating
Manual, unless acceptable mitigating procedures have been implemented and
approved by the Defense Security Service (DSS). The selected contractor and/or
subcontractor must be able to acquire and maintain a secret level facility and
Personnel Security Clearances, in order to perform on advanced phases of this
contract as set forth by DSS and the Marine Corps in order to gain access to
classified information pertaining to the national defense of the United States
and its allies; this will be an inherent requirement. The selected company
will be required to safeguard classified material IAW DoD 5220.22-M during the
advance phases of this contract.
PHASE I: Develop concepts to
improve the service life of TA by exploring the use of alternative materials,
design, maintainability, and manufacturing techniques that meet the
requirements outlined above. Develop concepts for an accelerated aging test
methodology that evaluate the expected life of transparent armor. Demonstrate
the feasibility of the concept in meeting the Marine Corps needs. Feasibility
will be established by material testing and analytical modeling, as
appropriate. Provide a Phase II plan that identifies performance goals, key
technical milestones, and addresses technical risks. This Phase II plan will
include specifications for the prototypes to be constructed.
PHASE II: Based on the
results of the Phase I effort and the Phase II plan, develop a process and
prototypes for testing. The prototypes will be scaled from a quarter to full
size depending on the technology and test requirements. The prototypes will be
evaluated to determine if the performance goals defined in the Phase II
development plan and the requirements outlined in ATPD-2352T have been met.
System performance will be demonstrated through prototype evaluation and
modeling to include durability, ballistic, optical, and environmental
performance. Results will be used to refine the design to optimize
performance. Prepare a Phase III plan to transition the technology to the
It is probable that the work under this effort will be classified under Phase
II (see Description section for details).
PHASE III DUAL USE
APPLICATIONS: Upon successful completion of Phase II, the contractor will be
ready for full-scale application, testing, demonstration, implementation, and
commercialization. The Marine Corps could buy future TA through a Phase III
contract if the contractor has the manufacturing capacity. The technologies developed
under this topic would have direct application to other Department of Defense
applications including other services’ TA on Tactical Wheeled Vehicles,
Aircraft, and vision blocks.
The technologies developed under this topic would be of interest to police
departments for their armored vehicle and riot police shields. The
technologies would also have applications for the security industries that use
ballistic glass for things like armored trucks and facility protection at banks
1. “ATPD-2352T Purchase
Description Transparent Armor.” U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development
and Engineering Center (TARDEC), Research Development and Engineering Command
(RDECOM), May 8, 2013.
2. Patel, P. J.; Hsieh, A.
J.; Gilde, G. A. Improved low-cost multi-hit transparent armor. DTIC. Accession
Number ADA481074. Nov 1, 2006. (http://www.dtic.mil/get-tr-doc/pdf?AD=ADA481074)
3. Pascoe, J. A., et al.
(2013). "Methods for the prediction of fatigue delamination growth in
composites and adhesive bonds – A critical review." Engineering Fracture
Mechanics 112-113: 72-96. (available at the Author’s institutional repository: https://repository.tudelft.nl/islandora/object/uuid%3Ae22dcf36-b9be-4b7a-b7fa-4626e8d5f393)
4. Grujicic, M.; Bell, W. C.;
Pandurangan, B. Design and material selection guidelines and strategies for
transparent armor systems. Materials and Design (34). Elsevier Publishing.
KEYWORDS: Transparent Armor;
Laminated Glass; Ballistic Glass; Test Methodology; Reduced Life Cycle Cost;
** TOPIC NOTICE **
These Navy Topics are part of the overall DoD 2018.1 SBIR BAA. The DoD issued its 2018.1 BAA SBIR pre-release on November 29, 2017, which opens to receive proposals on January 8, 2018, and closes February 7, 2018 at 8:00 PM ET.
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