The US Army currently issues two basic uniform types: 1) a general duty nylon/cotton-based uniform that is inexpensive, comfortable, and durable, but lacks flame retardancy and 2) an aramid fiber-based uniform that is expensive, less comfortable, and less durable, but is flame retardant. The cilent desired a nylon/cotton-based uniform with flame retardancy similar to aramid fiber-based uniforms. plus enhanced thermal barrier properties.
Numerous flame retardant nylon/cotton treatments exist, but none both maintain fabric durability through multiple wears/washes and provide enhanced thermal barrier performance.
Materic developed a flame retardant nylon/cotton textile treatment capable of being applied as a clear or colored coating that can meet desired low-cost and burn resistance targets, even after 75 washes. Through the incorporation of a proprietary nanomaterial additive, thermal barrier performance (as measured by the depth of a simulated skin burn) showed a 10x improvement over the aramid uniforms.
Full-scale trials have produced hundreds of yards of military camouflage fabric at a U.S. government-approved vendor, and full certification testing is in progress. A version of the product is also being prepared for use in civilian industrial applications.