Development of Single-Layer Universal Combat Uniform Material
Current Chemical and Biological (CB) agent protective garments used by the military offer adequate protection to the wearer against the harmful CB threats but they do not offer any fire resistance (FR). The CB protective garments worn on top of an FR protective uniform could severely limit the mobility of the soldier and cause fatigue. To defend against this deadly combination of threats to soldiers, especially in harsh environments, it is highly advantageous to provide a single layer, light weight, multi-purpose fabric for a garment to provide barrier against fire, water/ liquid and chemical and biological agents. This universal combat garment would serve for daily use and would be designed to be significantly lighter in weight and allow considerable air permeation for comfort in hot climates. Consisting of a single layer fabric design with lightweight construction, it could travel easily in a cargo pocket onto the battlefield. The main objective of this SBIR Phase II project is to develop a single layer nonwoven barrier fabric against the FR and CB threats for use in universal combat garments as opposed to combining two separate layers of woven or knitted barrier fabrics through stitching. In this Phase II effort, Nanosyntex"s approach will be to design and develop a fully bonded, single layer nonwoven composite barrier fabric using all high performance inherently Fire Retardant (FR) fibers having excellent flame and thermal resistance on the inner and outer surfaces bonded to a woven or nonwoven fabric of CB protective barrier fabric made using activated carbon fibers and/or nano-fibers inserted into the middle of the overall structure. This unique multi-tiered composite will be hydroentangled via a spunlace process to produce a single fabric with good breathability, comfort and hand. The fabric will then be post-treated to provide outstanding durability and water repellent (WR) characteristics.
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