Tue, 16 June, 2020
Simone de Gale, Chief Executive and Inventor at Blast Absorption Systems Limited (BASL®), was recently granted her UK patent, “Pre-stressed blast and pressure wave resistant structure” (GB2560485).
BASL® is a patented materials processing technique which can be applied to metals and composites. Composites, incorporating the BASL® processing technique have achieved up to an 80% increase in protection against blast and pressure waves, and metals up to 25% increase. The process is designed to be a cost-effective method to improve protection, streamline material resources and contribute to global sustainability goals.
Ms. de Gale is focused on penetrating the civilian armoured vehicle market as BASL’s key entry point into industry, to provide better solutions to blast and pressure wave resistance, and to open further commercialisation routes within a range of markets where stronger and lighter materials are integral innovations for better performance. These markets are namely; defence vehicle armour; blast proof buildings and structures; boats and merchant vessels.
The work has been significantly supplemented by access to Ministry of Defence (MoD) grant funding and university collaboration, to develop the technology to Technology Readiness Level Six (TRL6) and, in 2012, BASL® approached TWI for assistance in developing their initial ideas for a curved, pre-stressed panel that would offer increased energy absorption with no additional weight.
During the 6-month project, TWI carried out an initial literature review of energy absorbing systems and applications of composite materials that clearly established the unique approach proposed by BASL®. TWI then carried out a comprehensive finite element analysis (FEA) of blast loading of a large number of potential panel designs, which added further assurance of the benefits of the pre-stressed approach. Finally, a number of test panels were manufactured and subjected to high rate destructive testing at TWI.
Detailed analysis of the test data showed a significant improvement in energy absorption of the pre-stressed panels, and high-speed video of the tests revealed the complex deformation behaviour of the panels during the tests. The work in this project was delivered by TWI’s Chris Worrall (Adhesives, Composites and Sealants Section) and Tyler London (Numerical Modelling and Optimisation Section).
TWI is proud to have played a small part in the early development of this interesting technology, and in assisting Ms. de Gale in her pursuit of the patent. TWI excels in helping organisations progress technology up the TRL scale, ensuring that ideas find a route through to market.