Advanced Sealant for Next-Generation Transparent Armor Service Life
Navy SBIR FY2018.1

Sol No.: Navy SBIR FY2018.1
Topic No.: N181-001
Topic Title: Advanced Sealant for Next-Generation Transparent Armor Service Life
Proposal No.: N181-001-0678
Firm: Luna Innovations Incorporated
301 1st Street SW
Suite 200
Roanoke, Virginia 24011
Contact: Jesse Kelly
Phone: (434) 220-2510
Web Site:
Abstract: Transparent Armor (TA) systems are currently deployed on all Marine Corps armored vehicles. TA systems are constructed of multiple layers of glass laminated together with a spall liner to protect the occupants inside the vehicle. Existing TA designs are experiencing early-life delamination and creating a significant cost and maintenance burden on the Marine Corps. New adhesive sealant chemistries are necessary to improve the environmental durability of the TA armor stacks to reduce delamination propensity and increase service life. Luna is developing an advanced quick-cure potting sealant to provide a consistent, chemically stable, and low off-gassing bond between the TA stack and the metallic frames they are inserted into for vehicle mounting. The new potting sealant will be more environmentally stable and chemically compatible with existing urethane adhesives that are common to TA laminating processes. This will result in greater long-term TA laminate bond strength, resulting in longer service life compared to existing sealant technology. A combination of unique TA coupon test design and accelerated environmental exposure testing will aid in rapid development of the sealant and demonstration of improved service life.
Benefits: Transparent Armor (TA) is expensive and the replacement of delaminated TA is currently costing the Marine Corps $15-$20M per year. The development of the proposed advanced potting sealant is intended to increase the TA service life from 3-4 years (current) to 6 years or greater (goal). This will represent a significant (several $M) cost savings compared to current TA systems. The Marine Corps will be the first customer for the new TA designs that incorporate the advanced potting sealant material. Potential vehicle adoption can come on all tactical wheeled vehicles including the LVSR, MTVR, MRAP, HMMWV and JLTV. Other DoD agencies including the Army, Air Force, and Navy/NAVSEA will also benefit from the developed technology. Potential applications include other ground vehicles, aircraft, and anything requiring vision blocks with enhanced protective armor capability. The technology should also be of interest to polic departments for armored vehicle and riot polic shields. Other commercial applications include the security industry for ballistic glass in armored trucks, embassy protection, and facility protection.