ASTM F2668 - 07(2011)

    Standard Practice for Determining the Physiological Responses of the Wearer to Protective Clothing Ensembles

    Active Standard ASTM F2668 | Developed by Subcommittee: F23.60

    Book of Standards Volume: 11.03


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    ASTM F2668

    Significance and Use

    This practice can be used for the evaluation of the physiological response of a user to protective clothing ensembles worn under controlled conditions.

    This practice utilizes a treadmill for the exercise protocol. This method is believed to be appropriate for the evaluation of the majority of protective clothing ensembles, especially where the user will be walking or performing similar activities. In certain situations, where a protective clothing ensemble is designed to be worn where the user is performing specialized functions (for example, sitting or standing with only arm movement), alternate exercise equipment (for example, arm cycle-ergonometer) or exercise protocols should be considered for use in determining the physiological response of the subject.

    Where evaluations include the use of Personal Cooling Systems refer to Test Method F2300.

    This practice establishes general procedures for the physiological evaluation based on the physiological measurement of core temperature, mean skin temperature, heart rate, exposure time, oxygen consumption, and whole body sweat rate.

    The data obtained can be used to evaluate the overall physiological response of the test participant while wearing a protective clothing ensemble.

    The data may also be used in the research and development of advanced ensembles that are designed to reduce the physiological strain on the wearer thereby reducing the potential injury (for example, heat injury) associated with wearing the protective clothing ensemble. Workers may be able to wear a protective clothing ensemble for a longer duration due to a reduction in the physiological strain.

    The data can also be used to compare similar classes of ensembles and can be used to evaluate protective clothing ensembles as a hazard to the wearer as compared to a baseline ensemble.

    In addition, the practice could also be used by consensus standards organizations in the development of physiological test criteria for protective clothing ensemble certification.

    Departures from the instructions in this practice may lead to significantly different test results. Technical knowledge concerning thermoregulatory responses, physiological and environmental temperature measurement, and testing practices is needed to evaluate which departures from the instructions given in this practice are significant. All departures must be reported with the results.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This practice specifies the test equipment and procedures for determining the physiological responses of subjects wearing a protective clothing ensemble.

    1.2 This practice covers the physiological measurement of internal body core temperature, skin temperature, exposure time, heart rate response, oxygen consumption, and whole body sweat rate, to assess the physiological responses of subjects wearing a protective clothing ensemble. This practice does not measure the musculoskeletal strain on the participant imposed by the protective clothing ensemble.

    1.2.1 To increase safety during physiological testing, this dynamic test requires the use of human participants who meet specific health and physical fitness requirements.

    1.3 The present standard does not attempt to determine important clothing characteristics, such as thermal insulation and evaporative resistance of the protective clothing ensemble. Test Methods F1291 and F2370 can be used for these clothing measurements.

    1.4 The values stated in this practice shall be SI units.

    1.5 It is the responsibility of the test laboratory to obtain the necessary and appropriate approval(s) required by their institution for conducting tests using human participants.

    1.6 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user, and the testing institution, to consult and establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use of this standard.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    F1291 Test Method for Measuring the Thermal Insulation of Clothing Using a Heated Manikin

    F1494 Terminology Relating to Protective Clothing

    F2300 Test Method for Measuring the Performance of Personal Cooling Systems Using Physiological Testing

    F2370 Test Method for Measuring the Evaporative Resistance of Clothing Using a Sweating Manikin


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 13.340.10 (Protective clothing)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    DOI: 10.1520/F2668-07R11

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