That's because gun violence has spiked in recent years, and often, casualties aren't just strangers on the news. According to Pew Research, 44% of Americans say they personally know someone who has been intentionally or unintentionally shot, and 23% claim someone has used a gun to intimidate them or a member of their family.
With those kinds of statistics in mind, it's no wonder body armor has become a direct-to-consumer industry, with one Utah company creating bullet-resistant vests, shields, and more using state-of-the-art technology previously available only to military and law enforcement.
Citizen Armor, the Utah company leading the direct-to-consumer body armor market, creates bullet-resistant vests, backpacks, shields, and binders using Protek™ graphene technology licensed from ATEK Defense Systems. According to Graphene-Info, graphene is 50,000 times smaller than a human hair and 30 times stronger than steel yet one-sixth of the weight.
What's more, Protek™armor still works when wet, and doesn't degrade with moisture or time – something that can't be said for other ballistic armor on the market. Protek™ graphene armor provides unparalleled protection, with the ability to take multiple rounds while remaining flexible, lightweight, and comfortable.
*The Protek Elite Armor is waterproof, resistant to UV rays and the environment, and carries a 7-year warranty.
Protection, years (and years) in the making
Bulletproofing is not exactly a thoroughly modern concept. In fact, according to Smithsonian, the 1914 assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, was a turning point in efforts to create bulletproof personal protective equipment. Ferdinand, it turned out, had been wearing a protective undergarment – though, it seemed, Gavrilo Princip either knowingly or luckily aimed around it. The undergarment Ferdinand sported that day would eventually become today's bulletproof vest – although the technology behind it has become an art in itself.
The 1960s saw the creation of Kevlar, a carbon aramid that, when tightly woven into flexible fabric was resilient to bullets – the seemingly perfect composition for body armor.
While still widely used in the marketplace, Kevlar, unfortunately, has many drawbacks. Because it quickly absorbs moisture, Kevlar is sensitive to environmental factors and can be ineffective when wet – which is a major drawback considering the consequences of failed body armor.
Protek™ graphene armor, on the other hand, exceeds the benefits of Kevlar without the drawbacks. In fact, according to Citizen Armor, Protek™ slashes body armor weight by up to 66% compared with traditional vests, keeping armor soft and flexible enough to wear for prolonged periods.
What's more, Protek™ has been proven to function effectively even after complete submersion in water – something that can't be said for Kevlar or other traditional aramid fibers.
When purchased from Citizen Armor, Protek™ also carries a seven-year warranty, unparalleled in an industry where traditional body armor carries a shelf life of just 3 to 5 years.
Beyond the bullets
Several materials on the market today are capable of stopping a bullet, but that doesn't mean they're providing the level of protection needed. That's because the trauma of even a stopped bullet can render a victim injured at best and incapacitated at worst. Known as back face signature (BFS), the trauma behind the vest can damage skin, muscle, bones, and internal organs.
Protek™ is specifically engineered to reduce the amount of BFS to its wearers. Industry standards allow no more than 44 mm of BFS. When tested, Citizen Armor's products demonstrated between 14 and 19 mm BFS, 20% better than standard competitors.
Unfortunately, today's world isn't as safe as it used to be – but fortunately, ballistic equipment is much more effective than ever before.
Read the original article on KSL.