These Drexel grads want to stop the next school shooting - Technical.ly Philly

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Jul. 19, 2017 12:59 pm

These Drexel grads want to stop the next school shooting

Two Army vets are working on a system that deploys bulletproof curtains.
A simulation of how the system would deploy.

A simulation of how the system would deploy.

(Courtesy video)

As part of their final project as Drexel University mechanical engineering students, James Ostman and Daniel Navin got to work on a major problem the U.S. faces: gun violence in schools.

For three months the duo of Army veterans, together with Drexel grads Peter Lewis and Fen Tamulonis, worked on a design and filed a provisional patent on what they say could stave off the perils of an active shooter attack at a school or other facility.

And so they came up with the Ballistic Curtain Cordon System. Here’s the design team pitching the product at Drexel’s Senior Design Day last month:

It’s basically a series of bulletproof curtains that deploy on command throughout a building, making it harder for a shooter to target victims at random and letting students have a safe escape route. The activation process would be similar to that of a fire alarm, with direct access for law enforcement and first responders to retract it at any time.

The designed has changed significantly from the initial prototype so they have applied for a new provisional patent and are now gathering up resources to file the definitive one.

(We alerted the founders to that free patent law clinic at Penn. They said they’d check it out.)

Navin said the next step is actively raising funds to further develop the project, currently at an early testing stage. The BCCS has gone over well with a Philly-area school district, which is considering hosting a trial of the system.

“But this isn’t just for schools,” Ostman said. The curtains, laden with thin layers of hardened steel, can be customized for any public space.

Companies: Drexel University
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