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ICI goes ballistic with NIJ certification

Innovative Composites International Inc. (ICI) has received certification from the research branch of the US Department of Justice for its ballistic composite panels.


December 14, 2010
by PLANT STAFF

ICI president and CEO Terry Ball points to a shot from a 44 Magnum.

Photo: Noelle Stapinsky

TORONTO: Innovative Composites International Inc. (ICI) has received certification from the research branch of the US Department of Justice for its ballistic composite panels.

The Toronto developer and manufacturer of high-tech composite materials said its panels, which are made of fibre reinforced thermoplastic (FRT), have been certified to the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) standard 0108.01 Level 4, the branch’s highest certification level.

This standard is applies to all ballistic restraint materials (armour) intended to provide protection against gunfire for fixed structures and occupants of vehicles.

ICI’s proprietary FRT panels consist of a composite material called X-Ply Skin – bonded thermoplastic molecules with structural fibres such as fibreglass or Kevlar, which laminates to a wide variety of core materials.

There’s a molecular web between the continuous strands that spreads the impact pof a bullet over a large area as the thermoplastic gums up the end of the bullet.

Although the composite armour market is still in its infancy, ICI said increased instability in regions such as Mexico and the Middle East is driving the demand for bulletproof vehicles and structures.

“Ballistics is a market with notoriously long sales cycles, but can be very lucrative once you are able to get through the required procedures. ICI’s partners are established players and the recently obtained NIJ Level 4 certification should allow us to accelerate development efforts and secure market share,” said Terry Ball, ICI’s president and CEO.

ICI, which manufactures at a plant in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., said it’s currently working with companies in Canada, the US and Mexico to integrate its ballistic panels in various armoured products.
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