Browse Publications Technical Papers 2004-01-2345
2004-07-19

Use of a Thermal Manikin to Evaluate Human Thermoregulatory Responses in Transient, Non-Uniform, Thermal Environments 2004-01-2345

People who wear protective uniforms that inhibit evaporation of sweat can experience reduced productivity and even health risks when their bodies cannot cool themselves. This paper describes a new sweating manikin and a numerical model of the human thermoregulatory system that evaluates the thermal response of an individual to transient, non-uniform thermal environments. The physiological model of the human thermoregulatory system controls a thermal manikin, resulting in surface temperature distributions representative of the human body. For example, surface temperatures of the extremities are cooler than those of the torso and head. The manikin contains batteries, a water reservoir, and wireless communications and controls that enable it to operate as long as 2 hours without external connections. The manikin has 120 separately controlled heating and sweating zones that result in high resolution for surface temperature, heat flux, and sweating control. The physiological finite element model uses approximately 40,000 solid thermal and blood network elements to represent the human body. The manikin and physiological model demonstrate their value in evaluating the thermoregulatory response of a person in a protective uniform. They can also be used to evaluate the effectiveness of personal cooling systems.

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