Ceramic Armor Materials Market: Introduction
- Ceramics are considered one of the most important materials for lightweight armor applications due to their low density, high compressive strength, and high hardness
- In order to be used as ballistic armor, ceramic materials must be sufficiently rigid to fragment the bullet and reduce its speed, transforming it into small fragments that can be stopped by the layer of flexible material that supports the ceramic
- Thus, the ceramic material needs to offer high elastic modulus and high hardness. Fracture toughness is also an important requirement for this application.
Different Types of Ceramic Armor Materials
- Commercially manufactured ceramics for armor include materials such as boron carbide, aluminum oxide, silicon carbide, titanium boride, aluminum nitride, and syndite (synthetic diamond composite).
- Boron carbide composites are primarily used to protect ceramic plates against smaller projectiles. They are used in body and helicopters armors. Silicon carbide is primarily employed to protect against larger projectiles.
- Commercially, a variety of sintered, reaction-bonded, and hot pressed ceramic materials such as [Hexoloy Silicon Carbide (SiC)] are available. Common ceramic body armor components in the market are CeraShield high-density aluminum oxide, CeraShield silicon carbide, and CeraShield boron carbide.
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Drivers of Global Ceramic Armor Materials Market
- Military and security forces across the globe are facing new domestic and international terror threats and an increase in combat deployments in hostile territories
- Vehicles designed for traditional land conflict are often lightly or inadequately protected from asymmetric threats, such as Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and Explosively Formed Projectiles (EFPs), which are encountered with alarming frequency by troops on operations. National sensitivity to casualties and strained defense budgets compel engineers to continually adapt existing vehicle platforms to these constantly changing threats.
- The challenge to offer the highest level of protection with the lowest possible weight is a constant battle of material science, integration technologies and physics. These systems must protect from a range of threats such as direct gun fire, shaped charges, fragmentation, and land mines. Once soldiers deploy from their protected vehicles, they require lightweight body protection that allows them to operate freely at elevated temperatures and altitudes carrying a full battle load. Military vehicles have traditionally been manufactured from high strength armor plate steel. Modern ceramic composites have largely replaced steel as the non-structural armor in combat vehicles. Thus, the military sector is the driving force of the ceramic armor materials.
North America Expected to Hold Major Share of Global Ceramic Armor Materials Market
- In terms of region, the global ceramic armor materials market can be divided into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa
- North America accounts for the major share of the global ceramic armor materials market. This trend is expected to continue during the forecast period. High demand for body armor from the defense sector as well as among civilians is a major factor boosting the ceramic armor materials market in the region. Increase in military spending by the U.S. Government is also responsible for the rise in consumption of ceramic armor in vehicle armor and aircraft armor applications.
- China is the key producer and consumer of ceramic armor materials in Asia Pacific. Intensive R&D and easy availability of raw materials have led to an increase in demand for ceramic armor materials in the region.
- India also held vital share of the market in Asia Pacific in 2018, owing to the presence of a promising defense sector in the country. China, India, Vietnam, and Indonesia are key countries of the market in Asia Pacific.
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Key Players Operating in Global Market
The global ceramic armor materials market is fragmented, with players focusing on incorporating advanced technologies to gain higher share. These players offer a complete portfolio of products and focus on different business strategies to strengthen their position in the market.
Key players operating in the global ceramic armor materials market include:
- Paxis Ceramics
- Morgan Advanced Materials
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