The material made out of a synthetic powdered clay can be modelled in almost any shape you could think of. Spinel is actually a mineral, it’s magnesium aluminate. After it’s heated it is then pressed into transparent sheets. Unlike other commercially available bulletproof glass Spinel weights just a lot less. Additionally it doesn’t block the infrared wavelength of light. This is why scientists found it perfect to be used in the defense industry. The material can be used to protect a UAV’s surveillance camera or the lens of a laser system.
When asked about the advantages of having their research implemented Dr. Jas Sanghera declared: “The advantage is it’s so much tougher, stronger, harder than glass. It provides better protection in more hostile environments — so it can withstand sand and rain erosion… If you replaced that [pane] with spinel, you’d reduce the weight by a factor of two or more”