W.L. Gore & Associates
Soldier handling chemicals

Materials Provide Connections and Protection

Sept. 23, 2019
Advanced materials enable the creation of selectively permeable fabrics to block the flow of dangerous chemicals in the warehouse or on the battlefield.

Novel materials are critical to both industrial environments and military battlefields and can be woven into clothing and interconnection solutions. Somewhat unusual is to see such solutions from the same supplier, as on display recently by W.L. Gore & Associates at the 2019 Defense & Security Equipment International (DSEI) exhibition (Sept. 10-13, 2019, London). Perhaps best known among engineers for its high-performance cable assemblies, the firm displayed its military/aerospace cable assemblies for high-speed network interconnections including in Ethernet, HDMI, and USB links.

The flexible digital cable assemblies are designed to minimize loss even with tight bends in military aircraft, as well as to provide reliable performance in aerospace systems, even across operating temperatures from −200 to +200°C. The GORE-FLIGHT microwave and RF cable assemblies are also flexible but robust, with loss as low as 0.2 dB/ft. or less through 18 GHz. As with the digital cable assemblies, they are built for excellent EMI shielding in hostile operating environments.

The practical application of novel materials in fabrics for protective clothing serves both military and emergency service personnel. The firm displayed clothing capable of providing a guard against chemical and biological warfare. Clothing based on GORE PYRAD fabric technology provides protection against excessive heat and flames in industrial and military environments, while GORE CHEMPAK selectively permeable fabrics can block the flow of toxic chemicals. The light-weight materials can provide a physical barrier against the flow of fuel and other contaminants, and even be made air impermeable to block the flow of aerosols and other materials carried in air, such as contaminated sand.

About the Author

Jack Browne | Technical Contributor

Jack Browne, Technical Contributor, has worked in technical publishing for over 30 years. He managed the content and production of three technical journals while at the American Institute of Physics, including Medical Physics and the Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology. He has been a Publisher and Editor for Penton Media, started the firm’s Wireless Symposium & Exhibition trade show in 1993, and currently serves as Technical Contributor for that company's Microwaves & RF magazine. Browne, who holds a BS in Mathematics from City College of New York and BA degrees in English and Philosophy from Fordham University, is a member of the IEEE.

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