Synthetic biology has been used to generate a range of materials that have useful protective capability for military and civilian use. We have used biological processes to develop a new suite of tools that have enabled us to manage and control the microstructure of materials with a precision that has previously been unavailable using any other techniques. Bioengineered organisms have been used to manufacture materials, or elements used in the fabrication of materials, for ceramic armour, fibrous materials and transparent protective materials. The biological tools that we have created have allowed precise positioning of elements at ceramic grain interfaces to modify the impact response, thus increasing the protective capability. We have used advanced molecular biology techniques to create proteins that can attach to the surface of advanced polymer fibres, thus altering their surface properties. We have improved the dispersion of nanofibers in polymer systems to give improved strength whilst maintaining transparency. In addition, we have investigated the use of synthetic biology derived materials to enhance coatings and adhesives for transparent armour. This talk will explain the details of these processes and show how, contrary to popular belief, the use of biological organisms can contribute strongly to the development of materials used in armour systems, leading to potentially significant advantages in economic production of such materials.