Environmental Durability for Reduced Non-Ballistic Failures

Sand and debris kicked up in wind and rotor wash pose a serious threat to glass-based armor windows.
Sand and debris kicked up in wind and rotor wash pose a serious threat to glass-based armor windows.

Sometimes the environment poses the biggest threat to transparent armor systems. Glass-based armor systems tend to degrade due to non-ballistic phenomena such as rock strikes, sand erosion and prolonged UV exposure. These conditions can quickly impair the clarity and function of glass-based transparent armor.

ALON® transparent armor, however, has proven to be exceptionally resistant to such conditions.

  • Rock-Proof:  Kicked up rocks and large debris can cause significant damage to glass-based transparent armor windows; however, at the same size and thickness, Surmet's ALON® ceramic can withstand granite rock strikes at over 4x the impact force required to shatter glass.
  • Scratch-Proof:  The optical transmission of glass-based transparent armor tends to degrade over time, due to thousands of tiny scratched made by wind-swept sand and dust.  In controlled sand erosion testing, the optical transmission of glass-based armor reduced by 23% while the optical transmission of ALON® transparent armor remained the same.
  • Delamination Resistant:  ALON® transparent armor has low interlaminar residual stresses due to the compatible coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) with both glass and polycarbonate.  Under thermal cycling, ALON® transparent armor has a much lower propensity for delamination than glass-based armor.
  • Tolerant of Extreme Conditions:  ALON® transparent armor is an exceptionally high-performing material in extreme environmental conditions.  ALON® transparent armor has proven to withstand both mechanical stresses (vibration, mechanical shock, g-loading and sudden pressure release) and environmental stresses (solar radiation, humidity, temperature ranges from +185°F to -67°F and thermal cycling).

Contact Us:

For General Sales Inquiries, write to us at:




Technical Sales:

For ALON® and Spinel Infrared Optics Related:

Dr. Lee Goldman


Transparent Armor and Products:

Mr. Uday Kashalikar


Aluminum Nitride:

Mr. Mohan Ramisetty


Surface Eng. and Coatings:

Dr. Suri Sastri

Press Related:

Dr. Santosh K Jha

Careers Related:

Human Resources
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Surmet Corporation

Headquarters Address:

31 B Street
Burlington, MA 01803

Ph: 781-272-3969

Fax: 781-272-9185