MORRIS TOWNSHIP, N.J. , Nov. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Honeywell (NYSE: HON) announced today that Popular Science magazine has awarded a 2008 Best of What's New Grand Award to hurricane-resistant curtains containing Honeywell's high-strength Spectra fiber. The curtains were named the top innovation in home technology.
Honeywell's Spectra fiber, commonly used in bullet-resistant body armor, enables the Storm-A-Rest curtains to protect windows and doors during hurricanes. Because it uses Spectra fiber, the roll-down curtains can withstand 155 mph winds and impact from large wind-borne projectiles. They are manufactured by North Carolina -based JHRG, LLC.
"We are honored that Popular Science has recognized the role our high-strength Spectra fiber is playing in hurricane protection," said Joe Gelo , global business director for Honeywell's Advanced Fibers and Composites business. "It is further evidence that Spectra fiber can help end-use products perform in the harshest of conditions."
Storm-A-Rest curtains are approved under Florida's building code for Wind Zone 4, which includes the area within one mile of the state's nearly 1,200-mile coastline. It is estimated that 7.3 million homes are within the hurricane zone.
Homeowners can easily install the curtains using standard fasteners without special tools. They can be fastened to wood, brick or concrete surfaces. The curtains are available in more than 350 Sunbrella(R)-brand accent patterns and come with a five-year warranty. Unlike alternatives like plywood and corrugated aluminum panels, Storm-A-Rest panels are easy to install, maintain and store. Because the curtain incorporates Honeywell's Spectra fiber, they are extremely lightweight, weighing less than two ounces per square foot -- about 75 percent less than corrugated aluminum panels.
"For 21 years, Popular Science's Best of What's New awards honor the innovations that make a positive impact on life today and change our view of the future," said Mark Jannot , editor-in-chief of Popular Science. "PopSci's editors evaluate thousands of products each year to develop this thoughtful list; there's no higher accolade Popular Science can give."
Pound for pound, Spectra fiber is 15 times stronger than steel. It is made from ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene using a patented gel-spinning process. The fiber exhibits high resistance to chemicals, water, and ultraviolet light. It has excellent vibration damping, flex fatigue and internal fiber-friction characteristics. It also has up to 60 percent greater specific strength than aramid fiber.
Other industrial applications for Spectra fiber include security netting, rope and cordage and fishing line, as well as industrial slings used to lift heavy equipment and materials for offshore oil and gas construction.
Honeywell maintains an active Spectra fiber and ballistic material research and development program aimed to meet increased demand for its high performance materials.