IDG regularly holds customer training and demonstrations like the Thermo-Man® test. We provide resources and information for the most current and innovative products available; and through our training programs, we support a safe work environment for customers and their employees.
For more information on how your company can participate in one of our events, please contact Gloria Greene, IDG Safety Product Manager, at 704.398.5787.
IDG held a THERMO-MAN® Demonstration for their customers to enable them to visibly observe how materials and garments perform in terms of thermal protection again electrical arc. DuPont™ Thermo-Man® is one of the world’s most advanced thermal burn injury evaluation systems. Thermo-Man® is used to predict level, extent, and location of potential burns of whole garments in simulated flame exposure. Four different garment types were tested, ranging from least to most thermal protection, and customers were also encouraged to bring garments they were currently using or considering for use, to compare against Nomex®.
WHAT IS NOMEX®?
DuPont™ Nomex® is a heat- and flame-resistant fiber used in protective solutions. Heat and flame protection is engineered into the molecular structure of the Nomex® fiber. It does not come from chemical treatment. This means that the heat and flame resistance of Nomex® fiber is inherent and will last the life of the garment.
In addition to managing extremes of heat through advanced thermotechnology, Nomex® brand protective apparel also helps deliver optimum comfort and durability. Nomex® fibers are used in a wide range of applications, such as protective apparel where high temperature resistance is critical.
DuPont™ Nomex® is a great choice in FR protection:
- Nomex® fiber is proven and predictable
- Flame-resistant (FR) properties are inherent to Nomex® fiber and can never wash out or wear away
- Garments made of Nomex® are lightweight, breathable, provide outstanding wear life and are extremely durable
- The durability of Nomex® makes it more cost-effective verses other products which are routinely replaced due to FR washing off or the garment wearing out
- Garments made of Nomex® can enhance professional appearance: excellent in appearance retention, easy to launder and low laundry shrinkage
- Works in tough fires. Over 95% of fire fighter turnout gear contains Nomex®
In each burn test, the garments were engulfed in flames for four seconds before the fire was turned off. The viewers were able to watch how each garment reacted to the fire, and how quickly they stopped burning. A computer that directly interacted with the mannequin was used after each demonstration to show the areas of the mannequin’s body that were burned, and what percentage of those burns were 1st, 2nd, and 3rd degree burns. A graph was also used to show the likelihood that the injuries would be fatal.
The first test used 100% cotton shirt and pants. After the flames were turned off, the garments continued to burn and, had the fire not been extinguished, would have burned until there was no garment left. The areas of the mannequin that had clothing layers, such as the undershirt and briefs, were slightly less burned, but regardless of layering, the cotton garments offered virtually no protection against the fire.
The second test used FR Cotton/Nylon (88/12) Coveralls (7oz/sy). These garments were more fire resistant than the 100% cotton garments, but a large area of the body was still burned and the fatality rate was still very high.
The third test used Nomex® IIIA Coveralls (6oz/sy). The area of the body with burns was markedly less and most of those burns were only 1st degree burns. The worst burns were on the areas of the body without layers. The fatality rate of this demonstration was much lower.
The fourth test used Nomex® CXP® Coveralls, with a 100% cotton work shirt and jeans, worn underneath the coveralls, and a Nomex® Balaclava face mask. The suit burned itself out very quickly after the flames were stopped. One of the arms stayed on fire because the coverall sleeve was pushed up and the shirt underneath was still burning (showing the importance of wearing these garments correctly). Except for the burning sleeve, this combination offered 100% protection from fire and the chance of survival was 100%.
Watch this short video showing the four different demonstrations. Notice the time it takes for the fires to burn out. The first outfit continues to burn until it is put out manually, then the amount of time lessens with each subsequent demonstration, until, in the final one, it burns out almost immediately.