Kevlar – An Introduction

As we noted in our previous post looking at some of the characteristics of Carbon Fibre, here at Advanced Composites our team of Composites specialists have a vast experience working with a range of different materials. 

Here, we examine some of the key characteristics of another material that is very popular – particularly in the military and aerospace sectors – Kevlar.

Kevlar is an incredibly strong material – sometimes known as Aramid Fibres – that was first developed in the 1970s by Dupont. The material itself is a synthetic fibre that is both incredibly strong but also heat resistant. This high strength material was first developed as a possible replacement for the use of steel in racing tyres but has since become a highly utilised material across a range of other different sectors.

Similar to Carbon Fibre, Kevlar is generally spun into individual fibres and then woven together to create

Its application across these different sectors is due to its very high tensile strength, its very high strength to weight ration (by which metric Kevlar is 5 times stronger than steel) and is also capable of withstanding high impacts as well. 

Generally – a lot of times the type of material used is one of two categories; Kevlar 49, which has a high stiffness and Kevlar 29 which has a low stiffness. As you might expect though there are also a number of other variants each with their own set of properties including;

  • Kevlar K100 which is a coloured version of Kevlar
  • Kevlar K119 which features higher-elongation as well as being both more flexible and more fatigue resistant
  • Kevlar K129 has a higher tenacity for ballistic applications
  • Kevlar AP which possesses 15% higher tensile strength than K-29

As a result this material has been extensively used across a range of different sectors over recent decade – from Bicycles to Bulletproof vests…

To find out more about Kevlar and the ways it can be used, be sure to talk to our composites experts today using the contact form here or the meet the team section here.