More than 100 million viewers worldwide tuned in to watch the big game on Sunday. They watched the final game of a grueling season that began for the players back in September when they first put on their helmets and shoulder pads, and started the long grind that is a pro-football season. In those five months, all players endured thousands of high-impact contact regardless of position. It’s no wonder that teams take great care in selecting the right helmet to protect their players.
Football players aren’t the only ones in need of head protection in order to do their jobs. Industrial workers routinely don hard hats. So do construction workers. In particular, military personnel have special considerations for the helmets they wear as a regular part of their uniforms. Their helmets must be comfortable and lightweight, yet strong enough to withstand impact from bullets and fragments, explosives and a myriad of other threats.
For years, Honeywell has tackled the challenge of providing lightweight, ballistic protection with its patented Spectra Shield® technology. The technology utilizes Spectra fiber, a high-performance, ballistic-resistant, polyethylene material that is 15 times stronger than steel, yet light enough to float. Honeywell’s patented Shield technology combines the fiber into a composite material—Spectra Shield—that can then be used to produce helmets that meet the rigorous standards of the military.
Consider the amount of weight a soldier carries. It can be more than 50 pounds heavy, and the headgear alone can add more than 3 pounds. Minimizing the weight of soldiers’ helmets—without sacrificing protection—is critical not just for short-term performance, but also to prevent long-term injuries from ballistics or explosions.
For example, when impact occurs through ballistics or explosions, it is Spectra Shield that minimizes the threat’s effect on the wearer. In addition to helping to stop the impact of the projectile, the material also helps maintain the structure of the helmet, so that it does not indirectly affect the wearer’s ability to see or move after impact.
Some companies are using Spectra Shield to produce military helmets that are 40 percent lighter than traditional aramid helmets. Spectra Shield helmets are used by militaries around the world, from the U.S., to Europe, to Australia.
Head protection is a serious requirement for everyone. Innovative solutions like Honeywell’s Spectra Shield technology can help minimize the risk of ballistic-related injuries.