It is often used in combination with other materials, forming composites. It has a wide range of uses. Kevlar® was developed at DuPont in the 1960s. Kevlar® has a high tensile strength to weight ratio, far exceeding steel and even specialist metal alloys, such as magnesium alloys, used in aerospace engineering.
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Kevlar is a heat-resistant and strong synthetic fiber, related to other aramids such as Nomex and Technora. Developed by Stephanie Kwolek at DuPont in 1965, this high-strength material was first commercially used in the early 1970s as a replacement for steel in racing tires. Typically it is spun into ropes or fabric sheets that can be used as such or as an ingredient in composite material components.
Kevlar has many applications, ranging from bicycle tires and racing sails to bulletproof vests, because of its high tensile strength-to-weight ratio; by this measure it is 5 times stronger than steel. It is also used to make modern marching drumheads that withstand high impact. When used as a woven material, it is suitable for mooring lines and other underwater applications.