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The recent surge in interest in bulletproof backpacks and hoodies has made soft armor a hot topic for school kids. While some coverage has been skeptical or even critical, most has been positive. Here is a look at how this type of body armor might affect your child’s safety. Let’s take a closer look. While soft armor will stop a bullet, it will not dissipate its momentum. In fact, the force of impact on a bullet will be greater than the weight of the armor.

Ballistic impact tests with a 200-g 80-mm hemispherical missile at 55 m per second are the gold standard in assessing soft body armor. The researchers created a simple backing material to measure deformation. The resulting data allowed them to compare the deformation and penetration effects of these types of ballistic impacts to those that do not penetrate soft body armor. This information was then used to create an assessment of the effectiveness of these protective equipments.

Kevlar soft armor was designed to protect soldiers against bullets, but it had its limitations. High-velocity bullets and large fragments could penetrate the vest and cause life-threatening blunt trauma injuries. So the United States military produced the Ranger Body Armor in 1991. With the help of the U.S. Army, the Ranger Body Armor could protect its troops from the same types of bullets. In fact, it was the first type of body armor designed specifically for the American military.