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Enhancing the Thermal Protective Performance of Firefighters' Protective Fabrics by Incorporating Phase Change Materials

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Abstract:

A composite fabric consisting of an outer shell, moisture barrier, thermal liner and comfort layer used for firefighters’ protective clothing, was incorporated with shape-stabilised phase change material (PCM) powder in order to improve the thermal protection capability provided by thermal protective clothing. Then we conducted a series of FTP (fire testing protection) experiments to investigate the effects of PCM location and phase change temperature on the heat protection efficiency of firefighters’ protective fabrics (FFPFs). Simultaneously the thermoregulation performance of the composite fabrics with PCMs was evaluated by using step-cooling experimental technology during the cooling process. Data from the FTP tests were also compared with those from the existing enthalpy formulation model of heat transfer through FFPFs embedded with PCMs. It was concluded that the use of PCMs could improve the heat buffering capacity. However, as PCM has a moderate melting temperature, it is better than the other two samples because they have a lower and higher melting temperature. Therefore PX 52 PCMs (melting temperature: 47 - 53 °C) could provided the maximum heat protection time compared with the other two kinds of PCMs.

Tags:

phase change material, fire protective clothing, thermal protective performance.

Citation:

Zhu F, Feng QQ, Liu R,Yu B, Zhou Y. Enhancing the Thermal Protective Performance of Firefighters’ Protective Fabrics by Incorporating Phase Change Materials. FIBRES & TEXTILES in Eastern Europe 2015; 23, 2(110): 68-73.

Published in issue no 2 (110) / 2015, pages 68–73.

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