Military, police and first responders have specific needs when it comes to tactical gear. For tactical clothing it is important for everything to be super durable, but as light weight as possible. That is why we were excited when we discovered a unique technology that was being used in tactical gear. We found a new, revolutionary material used for belts, harnesses and uniform stiffeners. This self-reinforced composite (SRPP) material, often referred to as Curv®, is super-stiff, has amazing impact resistance and can handle repeated wear at extreme low and high temperatures. Because it is 5-8 times stronger than existing plastic stiffeners used in tactical gear, it can be used at much thinner thicknesses and allows for significant weight reduction. When you are carrying weapons, ammo, and communication gear, you want to be as light as possible but you also want to minimize how much your holsters, belts, and armor pockets flex and bounce as you move……this technology makes it possible.
SRPP technology in Tactical and sports gear
To get even more interesting, the same tech is used in bulletproof body-armor as an “anti-trauma” layer. For this, layers of aramid fabric (brand names Twaron®, Kevlar®) are used to stop the bullet and the impact resistance of the SRPP layer reduces the amount of back-face deformation…..this helps to avoid bones being broken or organs being bruised!
SRPP technology used in armor “anti-trauma”
With such amazing properties, we thought… “can we use this for travel gear?” The answer is yes; we approached the German engineers who invented the technology and they agreed to work with us to develop Flexshell™: a SRPP composite optimized for luggage and travel gear!
For Flexshell, the goal was to make a material that is super lightweight while having incredible durability and impact resistance. After two years of development, what we got was a material that can take repeated drops, hits and flexes without permanently deforming. It is amazing in that it can be crushed or bent with the dents coming right out. For comparison, most plastic hardshell luggage is made from Polycarbonate plastic. When comparing Flexshell to Polycarbonate, Flexshell is 5 times stronger. This increased strength allows us to use less material and create a much lighter suitcase. When a polycarbonate suitcase suffers an impact, it dents, suffers “stress whitening” at the dent area and ultimately cracks. Duravo Flexshell can take much more impact without stress cracks or permanent dents. As a bonus, it’s crack resistance increases in cold temperatures unlike traditional plastics.
Flexshell’s improved Impact and Stiffness compared to Polycarbonate used in luggage
Finally, when designing Flexshell, we chose to highlight the technology in the surface visuals. The Flexshell surface shows the inter-woven molecularly oriented polymers….this creates an extremely premium look that distinguishes Duravo from ordinary plastic luggage or easy-to-scratch-and-dent high-end aluminum luggage!
We are thrilled to bring the new Flexshell to travel gear. We believe that it provides a new standard of lightweight durability for luggage and will transform how travelers look at premium materials used in suitcases.