Scientists create origami-inspired, lightweight bulletproof shield
The new barrier can be folded compactly when not in use, making it easier to transport and deploy. When expanded, it can provide cover for officers and stop bullets from several types of handguns.
“We worked with a federal special agent to understand what their needs were, as well as SWAT teams, police officers and law enforcement, and found that the current solutions are often too heavy and not as portable as they would like,” said Larry Howell, Professor at Brigham Young University.
The barrier is made of 12 layers of bulletproof synthetic fibre Kevlar and weighs only 24 kg. It uses a Yoshimura origami crease pattern to expand around an officer, providing protection on the side in addition to protecting them in the front. In testing, the barrier successfully stopped bullets from 9 mm, 0.357 Magnum and 0.44 Magnum pistols.