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A standard method to evaluate the permeation resistance of protective clothing has been developed. This method has generated numerous data on the resistance of various clothing materials to specific chemicals. Three chemicals for which little data were available are formaldehyde, chlorine, and hydrogen cyanide. Experience with the method in evaluating materials for their resistance to these chemicals is presented as well as a review of current methods for determining protective clothing performance. Results from the tests show that nitrile-butadiene, neoprene, and butyl rubber offer the best resistance to formaldehyde, chlorine, and hydrogen cyanide, respectively, and that both breakthrough time and permeation rate data are needed to determine performance.
protective clothing, butyl rubber, nitrile-butadiene rubber (NBR), neoprene, polyethylene-(PE) coated Tyvek, latex rubber, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), breakthrough time, permeation rate
Research chemist, E. I. du Pont de Nemours & Co., Inc., Haskell Laboratory for Toxicology and Industrial Medicine, Newark, DE