Composites key to lighter, more mobile vehicles



The future of the Army’s land vehicles is taking shape on a cement slab in a grassy field at Aberdeen Proving Ground (Maryland) where a medium-caliber gun blasts away at point-blank range at an aluminum hull hung with pads of exotic new armor plate.

After the murderous fire pierces, bends and shreds the protective materials, Army engineers study the damage and draw lessons for the next try.

It’s all part of the high-stakes effort to develop lightweight composites that outperform traditional steel.

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