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Different methods of predicting skin burns during bench top and full-scale tests of protective clothing are compared. A skin heat transfer and burn prediction model is also used to determine the effects of thermal properties of skin and blood flow rates on first, second, and third degree skin burn predictions for exposures used in longer duration tests of single and multiple-layer protective fabrics. Epidermis thickness can have a large effect on second degree burn predictions, while the dermis thickness can have a very large effect on third degree burn predictions. Subcutaneous thickness does not significantly affect burn predictions, while blood flow can affect third degree burn predictions. Results also indicate that care must be taken when analyzing burn predictions, as relatively small differences in skin temperatures can produce deceptively large differences in burn predictions when Henriques' burn integral is used.
protective clothing, skin burn, firefighter, bioheat transfer, turnout gear, thermal protective performance test, radiant protective performance test
Associate Professor, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK