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Efforts to reduce heat stress conditions in shipboard engineering work spaces are assigned high priority within the Navy. Recent questions have been raised concerning the effectiveness of thermal insulation on shipboard installations to reduce the radiant heat imposed on personnel. A major issue of concern is whether or not the new asbestos-free insulations are as efficient as their asbestos-containing predecessors with regard to the transmission of radiant energy.
A test program was initiated to investigate the newer, asbestos-free thermal insulations with regard to radiant energy considerations. The work was intended to provide a basis for reducing radiant heat in the work spaces through modification of existing insulation systems. The effort included contacting insulation manufacturers, performing shipboard surveys, and conducting a series of experiments designed to investigate radiant heat considerations. This paper describes the testing phase of the effort, including a discussion of obtained results. In addition, the latest Navy actions to improve habitability conditions in hot shipboard work areas are presented.
thermal insulation, radiant heat, comparison testing, surface emissivities, heat gun, heat stress, insulation practices, engineering, human factors, temperature
Supervisory Metallurgist, Naval Ship Systems Engineering Station, Philadelphia, Pa.