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Understanding the Ballistic Event: Methodology and Initial Observations

Healey, Adam, Cotton, J, Maclachlan, S, Smith, Paul and Yeomans, Julie (2016) Understanding the Ballistic Event: Methodology and Initial Observations Journal of Materials Science, 52 (6). pp. 3074-3085.

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The purpose of the study is to accelerate the development of ceramic materials for armour applications, by substantially increasing the information obtained from a high-energy projectile impact event. This has been achieved by modifying an existing test configuration to incorporate a block of ballistic gel, attached to the strike face of a ceramic armour system, to capture fragments generated during the ballistic event such that their final positions are maintained. Three different materials, representative of the major classes of ceramics for armour applications, alumina, silicon carbide and boron carbide, have been tested using this system. Ring-on-ring biaxial disc testing has also been carried out on the same materials. Qualitative analysis of the fracture surfaces using scanning electron microscopy and surface roughness quantification, via stereoimaging, has shown that the fracture surfaces of biaxial fragments and ballistic fragments recovered from the edges of the tile are indistinguishable. Although the alumina and boron carbide fragments generated from areas closer to the point of impact were also similar, the silicon carbide fragments showed an increase in porosity with respect to the fragments from further away and from biaxial testing. This porosity was found to result from the loss of a boron-rich second phase, which was widespread elsewhere in the material, although the relevance of this to ballistic performance needs further investigation. The technique developed in this work will help facilitate such studies.

Item Type: Article
Subjects : Mechanical Engineering Science
Divisions : Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences > Mechanical Engineering Sciences
Authors :
Cotton, J
Maclachlan, S
Date : 28 November 2016
DOI : 10.1007/s10853-016-0594-0
Copyright Disclaimer : The Author(s) 2016. This article is published with open access at
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 29 Nov 2016 09:56
Last Modified : 16 Jan 2019 17:10

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