The European Patent Office has upheld a key patent held by DSM Dyneema covering its recently introduced Dyneema Force Multiplier Technology used in materials for soft body armor and hard materials for helmets, vest inserts, and vehicle armor. Armor made with Dyneema Force Multiplier Technology is 30% lighter than current armor while providing the same level of ballistic protection, according to the company.

DSM Dyneema's patent EP1699954B1 had been opposed by another important western supplier of UHMWPE fiber. "We are very happy that the European Patent Office, after having heard both parties, has confirmed the validity of the patent," says Yvonne Engelen, vice president marketing and sales at DSM Dyneema. "Dyneema Force Multiplier Technology is a game-changer in the life protection field, it is the result of an important investment in research and development dating back over more than ten years by DSM Dyneema, and it is a confirmation that the massive body of knowledge we have built up in UHMWPE fiber and UD chemistry and production technology is unique.

"The market introduction of this high-end platform has been highly successful, and we see substantial growth potential. The importance of Dyneema Force Multiplier Technology has already been recognized by our customers and through various awards it has received."

After this verdict, the intellectual property covered by the patent gives DSM Dyneema the confidence to move forward in exploiting the technology for the benefit of its customers in diverse markets. "Since filing this original patent, we have continued our innovation efforts and filed other patents relating to this technology platform," Engelen adds.

Engelen says that the confirmed protection for Dyneema Force Multiplier Technology and the newest generation of ultimate strength Dyneema fibers means that DSM Dyneema customers can benefit from the protection of the disstinctinve products they source from the company. "It is natural that, with our ongoing innovations in the development and production of ultrahigh molecular weight polyethylene fiber, third parties will seek to contest our patents," Engelen says. "The decision from the European Patent Office confirms the high quality of our innovations and patents."

About DSM Dyneema

DSM Dyneema is the inventor and manufacturer of Ultra High Molecular Weight PolyEthylene (UHMWPE) fiber branded as Dyneema. According to the company, Dyneema offers maximum strength combined with minimum weight, is up to 15 times stronger than quality steel and up to 40% stronger than aramid fibers (both on weight for weight basis), and Dyneema fiber floats on water and is extremely durable and resistant to moisture, UV light, and chemicals. Dyneema is used in bullet resistant armor and clothing for police and military personnel.