A new type of shield was invented by BYU engineering professors. It protects police officers from gunfire. The shield can be folded when it’s not in use, and it takes 5 seconds to expand. It’s made of bulletproof Kevlar (12 layers), but it only weighs 55 pounds. It features an Yoshimura origami crease pattern that wraps around the officer, providing protection from the front and side. It stops 9mm, .357 Magnum, and .44 Magnum rounds. In addition to protecting police officers, this barrier could be used to protect children in school.
Here’s a video of the new bulletproof shield:
Here’s interesting historical information about bulletproofing from Wikipedia:
In 1887, Dr. George E. Goodfellow of Tombstone, Arizona Territory, documented three cases where bullets had failed to penetrate silk articles of clothing. He described the shooting death of Charlie Storms by gambler Luke Short. Although shot in the heart, “not a drop of blood” exited Charlie Storms’ wound. Goodfellow found though the bullet did indeed kill Charlie Storms, it failed to pass through a silk handkerchief, essentially catching the bullet, but it was not enough to stop the bullet entirely.
Another was the killing of Billy Grounds by Assistant City Marshal Billy Breakenridge. Goodfellow examined Billy and found that two buckshot grains had penetrated Billy’s thick Mexican felt hat band embroidered with silver wire, penetrating his head and flattened against the posterior wall of the skull. Another of the grains had passed through two heavy wool shirts and a blanket-lined canvas coat and vest before coming to rest deep in his chest. But Goodfellow was fascinated to find in the folds of a Chinese silk neckerchief around Grounds’ neck two shotgun pellets but no holes and no wounds.
And he described a wound to Curly Bill Brocius who had been shot through the right side of the neck, narrowly missing his carotid artery. A portion of his silk neckerchief was carried into the wound by the bullet, preventing a more serious injury, but the scarf was undamaged. The Tombstone Epitaph reported, “A silken armor may be the next invention.”
Goodfellow wrote an article for the Southern California Practitioner titled “Notes on the Impenetrability of Silk to Bullets”. He experimented with designs for bullet-resistant clothing made of multiple layers of silk. By 1900, gangsters were wearing $800 silk vests to protect themselves.