BAE Systems has received a contract from the US Army to supply Tensylon composite armour panels for Heavy Equipment Transporter (HET) vehicles that transport, deploy, recover and evacuate main battle tanks and other heavy vehicles to and from the battlefield.
Developed by BAE Systems, Tensylon is a material designed to protect ground vehicles such as Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles, and individual soldier equipment.
The initial $2.6m (£1.8m) contract is part of the US Army’s Heavy Tactical Vehicle Armor Program and is a direct result of BAE Systems’ Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with Army Research Labs (ARL).
The partnership with ARL tests and evaluates composite armour solutions to defeat current and emerging threats in Iraq and Afghanistan. These tests and evaluations resulted in the development of a lightweight appliqué armour kit, utilising Tensylon, a family of ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene tape and composite products.
While reducing the weight of the armour system, Tensylon is said to be ballistically more efficient than other materials typically used in military ground vehicles.
Tensylon is manufactured in the company’s Monroe, North Carolina facility, part of BAE Systems’ Security & Survivability Systems business headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio.