With the intrinsic flexibility of advanced composite materials combined with the high energy absorbing characteristics of core materials, impacts can be absorbed without damage. Even with a severe impact, damage is likely to remain in a localised area without distorting the surrounding structure.
Aluminium has a low tolerance for absorbing energy. Under impact, hull panels will distort or puncture rather easily with distortion often transferring through into its supporting structure requiring expensive and time-consuming repairs. A severe impact can even distort the whole structure causing misalignment of transmission-systems, machinery and equipment.