Influence of stacking sequence on the impact behaviour of UHMWPE soft armor panels Articles uri icon

publication date

  • April 2022

start page

  • 1

end page

  • 9


  • 286

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0263-8223

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1879-1085


  • Mechanical behavior of Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMWPE) under high-velocity impact is critical for the design of soft armor vests. Several types of UHMWPE are available with different mechanical properties. However, no validated methodology has been published in literature to analyze the influence of stacking sequence combining different UHMWPE materials to maximize the ballistic limit. In this work, a combined experimental-numerical methodology is proposed to predict the change of the ballistic limit with the stacking sequence, and hence to find the optimum combination. First, the FEM model is fitted using high-velocity impact tests on single layer specimens. Then, the FEM model is validated with the comparison of impact tests on 6 stacking sequences. Once validated, the FEM model is used to analyze 17 stacking sequences with similar areal densities to find the best configuration. In the optimum stacking sequence, for the conditions studied in this work, the material with highest ultimate strain in back face, the material with lowest ultimate strain in the front face, and the intermediate material in the middle. This combination can improve the ballistic limit of the best material reducing the final cost. Conclusions obtained can be used by composite design engineers to improve ballistic performance of UHMWPE protections.


  • Materials science and engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


  • uhmwpe; ballistic; impact; fem