Engineers in England have come up with a product to save a few bob for those who work in semi-dangerous occupations--cement body armor.
The vests combine "super strong" cement with recycled carbon fiber, making the vests tough enough to withstand most bullet calibers, according to researchers at the University of Leeds' School of Civil Engineering.
Currently, top-of-the-line bulletproof vests are made with alumina plates--the raw material used to make aluminum--through a costly process called sintering, which involves heating the material for up to two weeks at 1600 degrees Celsius to harden it.
The cement vest, on the other hand, would offer a cost-effective level of protection for people in semi-risky occupations short of full-on combat.
"By using cement instead of alumina we are confident we can deliver a cost-effective level of protection for many people at risk," said research team leader Philip Purnell. "It should be good enough for people like security guards, reporters, and aid workers who are worried about the odd pot shot being taken at them." … Read more