in Defence

Pants PhD for Dstl scientist

Posted 9 July 2018 · Add Comment

A scientist at the Defence, Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) is celebrating after his research into the effects of washing on combat underwear earned him a PhD from Cranfield University.

The unusual research topic even looked at using a cement mixer to do the laundry – because this was the ingenious ways soldiers found to keep their clothes clean in Iraq and Afghanistan in front-line operating bases without many facilities.



Above: Ballistic Underpants.
Courtesy Dstl


Mark has spent the last seven years researching the effect of continuous washing on protective clothing. The study looked at how protective systems, including the Tier 1 Pelvic Protection System or “blast pants”, issued to troops during the Afghan conflict would degrade with use.

At the time, the development of the protective underwear was an Urgent Operational Requirement (UOR) and therefore it was not possible to do all of the testing that would normally be done during the procurement process. Dstl started work to understand how robust these items would be to help improve them for the next generation. It turned out that the garments were far tougher than had dared been hoped.

Mark said: "The introduction of fragment protective fabrics into combat clothing meant we needed to understand the effect of laundering on the performance of these fabrics. The research revealed evidence that the fabrics used retained their ballistic protective performance, while other potential fabrics showed improvement after washing.

A number of wash types were investigated in the research, which included washing in a cement mixer.

Mark added: "I started work in the field of body armour 20 years ago, and served with the UK Armed Forces in both Iraq and Afghanistan as part of the scientific advisory branch. With friends in the Armed Forces it became a personal battle to help protect those who were putting themselves in harm’s way.

Mark has been nicknamed Dr Tenuous by colleagues after his unique PhD work got a mention on Chris Evan’s Radio 2 Breakfast Show.

Mark’s research is now being used to inform the development of the next generation of fragment protective clothing for the Armed Forces.

 

* required field

Post a comment

Other Stories
Advertisement
Latest News

Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 powering A330neo on Farnborough debut

Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines will power the first visit to the Farnborough international Airshow (FIA) of Airbus’s latest aircraft, the A330neo.

Bird & Bird team write UK chapter of Defence & Security Procurement

Bird & Bird's Defence & Security team have written the 2018 UK chapter for 'Defence & Security Procurement: Getting the deal through'.

Redscan accessible via G-Cloud 10

Penetration testing, threat detection and response specialist, has announced the availability of its services on G-Cloud 10 (launched this month), which is the latest iteration of the Government procurement platform for

Southend rated most accessible airport

London Southend Airport has today been rated the most accessible airport in London and the South East by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

Airbus delivers first A321neo in Cabin Flex configuration to Turkish Airlines

urkish Airlines took delivery of the first A321neo in Cabin Flex configuration at the Airbus Facilities in Hamburg, Germany.

London City welcomes first visit from Embraer's E190-E2

This morning an Embraer E190-E2 aircraft landed for the first time at London City Airport.

ODU SK191217191218
See us at
SMI GMSCBT3005081118AdvancedEngin BT1406011118DVD18BT3105200918FIL18 BT111017220718SMIFAVSBT151118Aviation Africa 2019