Accession Number:

ADA614122

Title:

Thermal Response of UHMWPE Materials in a Flash Flame Test Environment

Descriptive Note:

Final technical rept. Oct 2012-Apr 2014

Corporate Author:

ARMY NATICK SOLDIER RESEARCH DEVELOPMENT AND ENGINEERING CENTER MA

Report Date:

2014-11-13

Pagination or Media Count:

68.0

Abstract:

Despite excellent ballistic protection properties, Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene UHMWPE material has generally not been considered for certain applications in protective apparel due to its low melting point. This report describes a research effort to test UHMWPE fabric and composite material in a flash flame environment when protected by a flame-resistant FR fabric outer layer. This research was funded and managed through a US Army science and technology program Technology Enabled Capability Demonstration TeCD Force Protection Soldier and Small Unit. Testing was conducted at the Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center NSRDEC Ouellette Thermal Test Facility in accordance with the ASTM F1930 Standard Test Method for Evaluation of Flame Resistant Clothing for Protection Against Fire Simulations Using an Instrumented Manikin. Several UHMWPE fabrics were tested underneath an FR fabric outer layer of Tencate Defender M. Prior to fabricating test garments, preliminary flash flame testing was conducted with a midscale test setup, which guided the full-scale thermal manikin test plan. Test garments were fabricated for evaluation on the instrumented thermal test manikin, which included the UHMWPE undergarments shorts and vest and an FR fabric coverall as well as the FR Army Combat Uniform FRACU. All tests were conducted according to ASTM F1930 with a 4-s flame duration calibrated to 84 kWm2. The UHMWPE undergarments remained intact after all of the flash flame tests. Some distortion of the UHMWPE fabric was observed in localized areas. No meltdrip response was observed in the FR fabric shielded UHMWPE undergarments, and they provided a similar reduction in transmitted heat flux as was measured in tests with cotton undergarments.

Subject Categories:

  • Textiles
  • Protective Equipment

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE