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Russia weighs use of lightweight armor

Aug. 13, 2013 at 1:19 PM

MOSCOW, Aug. 13 (UPI) -- The Russian military will have access by 2015 to lighter ceramic armor plates manufactured using nanotechnology, a Russian military company said Tuesday.

Russian military company NEVZ-Soyuz said it was using boron-carbide powder to manufacture a lighter ceramic plating for use by the Russian military and police. State news agency RIA Novosti said the ceramic armor could find its way into combat aircraft and be in service by the end of 2015.

NEVZ-Soyuz said the ceramic plating used for bulletproof vests would shield against 7.62 mm rounds while armor employed for vehicle protection could stop a bullet twice that diameter.

The Kremlin said it was allocating approximately $4.4 million for the development of protective armor using nanotechnology like boron-carbide fiber. The report from RIA Novosti did not provide financial aspects of the NEVZ-Soyuz.

The report said the company aims to have a prototype ready by December. Testing would begin in late 2014.

Russian military officials said they were interested in lightweight armor for use in combat transport helicopters, some of which do not have reliable armor.

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