Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Are the windows of a US Navy ship bullet and blast resistant?

Any vessel that explores the oceans or navigates through hostile waters must be equipped with strong and sturdy windows, especially if it is a military ship. The US Navy ships are no exception to this rule, and Navy personnel have safety as their top priority. In addition to being watertight and airtight, the windows must be bullet and blast-resistant to provide protection for the crew in any unforeseen circumstances.

The US Navy uses different materials depending on the size, class, and purpose of the ship. For smaller vessels, the Navy uses a material known as polycarbonate or high impact acrylic. These materials are popular in this application for their ability to stop small-arms fire and resist fragmentation upon impact.

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For larger ships, the Navy uses laminated glass, which is made by bonding multiple layers of glass together under pressure at high temperatures. This type of glass is also used as a blast-resistant material for several reasons. Laminated glass has a high tensile strength and excellent elasticity, making it nearly unbreakable. It also performs well under fire conditions as it is resistant to shattering, which provides critical protection against debris from a blast.

The windows of Navy ships are not only bullet and blast-resistant, but they are also designed to withstand extreme weather conditions. During a storm, the waves can be tall, and the ship movements can be turbulent. Therefore, the windows must be able to withstand a considerable amount of impact without breaking.

The US Navy typically tests these types of applications in a lab setting before putting them into practice. In a recent test, the Navy placed different thicknesses of glass in front of a high-powered cannon firing armor-piercing rounds of various calibers. The tests showed that the laminated glass could stop rounds up to 0.50 caliber, indicating full bullet resistance. The material also scored high for blast-resistance, withstanding the shockwave from a 5-gram c-4 blast simulator up to 10 feet away.

In summary, the windows of US Navy ships are indeed bullet and blast-resistant, as the Navy uses materials such as polycarbonate and laminated glass to provide ample protection for its sailors. The testing which is conducted regularly ensures that the materials and systems used on their vessels are effective and up to date. Thanks to the Navy’s rigorous standards and continuous monitoring, sailors can feel secure knowing they have the best protection possible while they navigate the open seas.

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