IPB Researcher Creates Bullet-Proof Vest From Palm Oil Waste

JAKARTA – Siti Nikmatin, a researcher and lecturer of mathematics and natural sciences faculty (FMIPA) at Bogor university of agriculture (IPB), has managed to create a green composite bullet-proof vest from empty palm bunches.

Previously, Nikmatin had also managed to make green composite helmets by using microparticle fibers from empty palm bunches. After conducting further research, she found that the empty palm bunches are also able to absorb the high-speed ballistic impacts. The discovery led her to an idea of creating the bullet-proof armor.

She pointed out that through a special treatment she made, the biomass of empty palm bunches can become the fibers with lignocellulose content, which has a high capacity to absorb the high-speed ballistic impact. Such capacity is even higher if the treated biomass is compositely laminated or sandwiched.

“By adding anti-heat material coating, the woven biomass can resist fire within 30 seconds. It is used in designing bullet-proof vests,” Nikmatin said in a written statement received by SINDOnews on Thursday (10/9/2020).

Then, Nikmatin conducted a firing test by using glock pistol loaded with MU1-TJ bullets at effective distance of 25-50 meters. The bullet-proof vests are proven to be able to resist the impact of the bullet penetration after being fired.

“But the vests are not yet able to resist the firing impact from long barrel gun. For such higher capacity, further research is needed,” she said.

The bullet-proof vest made of the oil palm wastes will become an alternative product to meet the domestic need. “If I’m not mistaken, the raw materials for making bullet-proof vests are still 100 percent imported,” Nikmatin said.

“Due to its importance, I hope further research on this can be conducted. Two or three steps more before reaching commercialization,” she added. (*)

Source: sindonews.com | Featured image via ledgerinsights.com