An Overview of Recent Projects to Study Thermal Protection In Liferafts, Lifeboats and Immersion Suits

Mak, L and DuCharme, M. B. and Farnworth, B. and Wissler, E. H. and Brown, R. and Kuczora, A. (2011) An Overview of Recent Projects to Study Thermal Protection In Liferafts, Lifeboats and Immersion Suits. In: Proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Port and Ocean Engineering under Arctic Conditions, July 10-14, 2011, Montreal, Canada.

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In a marine evacuation, passengers may find themselves in lifeboats, liferafts or in the water. Survival is more challenging in cold regions and a person’s ability to survive until rescue depends on many factors, including the amount of protection the evacuees have against the cold, as well as the quality of breathing air in liferafts and lifeboats that are enclosed. Currently, international regulations do not provide specific thermal protection and ventilation performance criteria for lifeboats or liferafts. In addition, methods for approval testing of immersion suits have not been standardised and there is resistance in certain jurisdictions to the use of thermal manikins because regulating authorities are unsure of the correspondence between manikins and human. This paper provides an overview of several projects that have been completed and one ongoing by the Maritime and Arctic Survival Scientific and Engineering Research Team (MASSERT) to address the knowledge gaps in these areas. The results contribute relevant knowledge to close these gaps and are being used to advance international standards. They also show the value of using thermal manikins in combination with numerical models to predict the performance of lifesaving appliances when it is impractical or ethically unacceptable to conduct experiments with humans. The tools developed are being applied to create performance criteria and evaluate the performance of Arctic survival gear.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Item ID: 2062
Department(s): Marine Institute > Offshore Safety and Survival Centre
Date: 10 July 2011
Date Type: Completion
Supplemental Date: 14 July 2011

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