The challenge seeks to identify revolutionary and promising new armour concepts for military vehicles, specifically to identify vehicle armour within a pre-established total area density and capable of defeating two threats: specified armour-piercing rounds and fragment-simulating projectiles. A secondary goal is to determine the feasibility of producing vehicle armour materials at a cost competitive to current vehicle armour.

Kairos uses several technologies that combine metal matrix composites (MMCs) and three-dimensionally woven fibre composites into a passive armour solution that can be produced in any shape or thickness. This solution allows for lightweight, cost-effective, high-volume production of armour for current vehicles, as well as for future land, air, sea, and space platforms.

The Vehicle Armour Challenge is primarily designed for inventors and small organisations with limited resources to initiate full-scale armour development programmes. It is an opportunity for developers to obtain a rapid and impartial assessment of existing armour designs in a live fire “shoot-out” of armour panels at a certified ballistics laboratory.

“DARPA has given us a chance to prove our technology, and truly presents us with opportunity. The Kairos solution is unique, based upon years of development, and involves many great partners’ collaboration,” said CEO Don Akers.