The Paladin Project was conceived during the height of the Krypton-Shi'ar War, which Jor-El discovered a way in harnessing his people's metabolism, allowing not only to reawakening their powers under their red sun Rao, but amplifying them. He created a armor that by having it concentrated by solar energy in which Jor-El determined that these powers the wearer wield were only the surface of what it could be capable of. Jor-El, however, was very cautious of his prototype armor's capability to be found in the wrong hands and deliberately had it discontinued and shelved.
General Zod later learned about the Paladin Project and decided to resurrect it as an effective countermeasure to Kryptonite after learning that the United States possessed Kryptonite-enhanced warheads, and realizing the potential it has. Zod proposed Superman in finishing his father's project in order to conquer Earth and rule together as gods. However, the project didn't came into fruition following Zod's defeat.