Accession Number : ADA306253

Title :   Development and Evaluation of Deep-Sea Swimsuit Materials.

Descriptive Note : Technical rept.,

Corporate Author : NAVY CLOTHING AND TEXTILE RESEARCH FACILITY NATICK MA

Personal Author(s) : Audet, Norman F. ; Larrivee, Maurice N.

PDF Url : ADA306253

Report Date : JUN 1973

Pagination or Media Count : 62

Abstract : The Navy Clothing and Textile Research Unit (NCTRU) has developed a swimsuit material that meets the requirements of Navy personnel who operate at great sea depths for long periods of time. Two chemically distinct, flexible, syntactic foams--a Unit-developed, polyurethane, hollow-glass-microsphere composite and a proprietary, polyvinyichioride, hollow-glass- microsphere composite--have been produced which may prove useful for swimsuit applications in deep-sea environments down to 1000 FSW. Tests showed that both materials were essentially incompressible to depths of 1000 FSW (less than 3%) and provided more insulation than currently used Neoprene-foam materials at depths greater than 20 FSW. The materials, however, were considerably heavier than the foam although significantly less dense than sea water. Standard wet-style swimsuits were fabricated from these experimental materials for verification of sample thermal-conductivity data. Suit conductivity tests performed on an instrumented copper manikin substantially confirmed the material test data obtained with a guarded hot-plate device. During construction of the suits it also became apparant that special designs and fabrication techniques would have to be developed to utilize these materials most effectively. The thermal-conductivity results measured for both material composites were higher than expected based upon theoretical derivations, indicating that further improvements may be possible in this property. The higher conductivity values may indicate that, when the material is compounded, some of the spheres may be fractured. As a result, solid-glass particles coexist with the hollow spheres, limiting to some degree the ability of the spheres to reduce conductivity to the expected level.

Descriptors :   *THERMAL CONDUCTIVITY, *DIVER EQUIPMENT, *DEEP DIVING, *THERMAL INSULATION, *NEOPRENE, *EXPANDED PLASTICS, *WET SUITS, COMPOSITE MATERIALS, POLYURETHANE RESINS, TEXTILES, DIVING SUITS, SYNTACTIC FOAMS, MICROSPHERES.

Subject Categories : Textiles
      Plastics
      Elastomers and Rubber
      Life Support Systems

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE