Material responses in an actual arc event differ based on many variables in the event itself, but fiber content and construction of the fabric result in substantial differences in testing using the ASTM F1959 fabric test method and the ASTM F2675 glove test method. The objective of this review was to understand how fabrics protectively react to an arc event from a scientific perspective to assist in personal protective equipment development, research, and understanding in accident investigations. This paper explores the five major ways a flame-resistant fabric works to protect the end user in an arc: carbonization, ablation, insulation, isolation of plasma/current flow by fabric, and isolation by air gap.
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