NIJ Body Armor Ballistic Levels
The National Institute of Justice NIJ body armor ballistic levels currently classify body armor into five different threat levels: Level IIA, Level II, Level IIIA, Level III and Level IV based on their ability to stop specified rounds at specified velocities. The NIJ’s current standard is 0101.06 with a pending update to 0101.07 slated to be finalized in sometime in the next year or two.
Level IIA & II Body Armor vs Levels IIIA, III, III+ and Level IV
Caliber Armor offers body armor at NIJ body armor ballistic levels of IIIA and above. We will go into detail on the specifics of Level IIIA, Level III, Level III+ and Level IV. Level IIA and Level II could be considered outdated soft armor ballistic levels that are sometimes still used to achieve a lighter thinner armor panel. We can achieve this level of weight and thinness with our CaliberX™ soft armor and still provide the higher level IIIA/HG2 protection.
NIJ Body Armor Ballistic Level IIIA
NIJ Level IIIA is designed to stop .357 Sig FMG FN bullets traveling at a velocity of ~1470 ft/s and .44 Magnum SJHP rounds at a velocity of ~1430 ft/s. The updates for 0101.07 HG2 include testing requirements for 9mm FMJ with a velocity of ~1470 ft/s and changed the .44 MAG test to a JHP (jacketed hollow point) with the same velocity requirements. Our CaliberX™ Soft Armor panels have been tested to meet both the .06 IIIA and .07 RF2 NIJ ballistic level requirements.
NIJ Ballistic Level III & Level III+ Protection
NIJ Body Armor Ballistic Level III rifle plates are designed to stop six spaced hits of 7.62x51mm NATO FMJ M80 at a velocity of ~2780 ft/s. Level III+ is a designation that the body armor industry has adopted to show the capabilities of armor beyond the NIJ Level III testing. This indicates that the plate can withstand higher velocity rifle rounds plus additional threats such as M855 and M193. The NIJ intends to address this gap between Ballistic Level III and Level IV in establishing the RF2 category of the 0101.07 standard.
The Highest Rated Ballistic Level of Protection
NIJ Body Armor Ballistic Level IV are the highest rated hard armor plates under the NIJ standards. They are designed to take one hit from an Armor Piercing 30.06 traveling at a velocity of 2880 ft/s. This test will remain the same for the 01010.07 standard. We offer one level IV body armor plate.