Thermal effect of an Electric Arc on Personal Protective Clothing
“Workers’ safety is one of the main objectives that companies set themselves, in addition to the fact that the current legal framework forces them to “protect workers accordingly”, both their own staff and subcontracted workers.
Appropriate protection is achieved by reaching a balance between the perceptive risk assessment and the use of personal protective equipment (PPE), duly certified against the risk assessed.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Workers developing their activity with live elements risk suffering the effects of the electric arc. For this reason, it is necessary to use PPE that can protect them of its effects, high temperatures, increase in pressure and evaporation, effects of heat flow, noise, ultraviolet emissions and physical shocks.
Protection against the effects of the electric arc
In this sense, there are standards being applied to this equipment and they assess the response to the electric arc by means of two exposure methodologies, the “Box Test” in conformity with standard IEC 61482-1-2 and “ATPV” in conformity with standards IEC 61482-1 (to be shortly replaced with IEC 61482-1-1, that is currently in its final drafting stage) and ASTM F 1959.
These tests check the protection level of the clothing assessed against the thermal flow produced by an electric arc in order to ensure that the consequences for workers exposed to said arc will not become worse because of the clothes they wear; as well as to assess the heat energy transmitted through the material in order to be able to quantify the thermal protection of the piece of clothing. In the case of the “ATPV” test, such protection shall prevent the presence of second-degree burns.
ceis has signed a cooperation agreement with AITEX to conduct tests on the “Thermal effects of an electric arc on Personal Protective Clothing”.