TPACC has developed a powerful new tool for measuring the thermal protective performance of whole gloves and glove interfaces in controlled laboratory fire exposures. Development of the PyroHands™ Fire Testing System required advances in laboratory instrumentation technology including development of anthropometric manikin hand forms capable of surviving repeated exposures to intense fire environments, thermal sensors for the hands and fingers and modification to a skin burn translations algorithm that accounts for the difference in the thickness of skin in the hands.
The PyroHands™ Fire Testing System consists of two stand alone hand forms mounted in the PyroMan fire test chamber. Four propane gas burners are configured to produce a thermal exposure intensity averaging 84 kW/m2 (2.0 cal/cm2sec) across the surface of the hand forms.
PyroHands™ are fitted with twenty thermal sensors located in the ventral surface (palm) and dorsal surface (back) of the hand and in the wrist. An additional sensor is located in the middle finger of the right hand form. The heat flux readings from the sensor in the hand and wrists are translated to predict skin burn injury. This is done using the PyroMan burn translation model, modified to account for differences in skin thickness in the hand in comparison with torso areas of the human body.
PyroHand test results are graphically displayed to show the percentage of second and third degree as well as total burn injury, and the spatial distribution of burn predictions for the front and back side of the hand and wrist areas.