Effective testing of personal protective equipment in blast loading conditions in shock tube: Comparison of three different testing locations

Maciej Skotak, Eren Alay, James Q. Zheng, Virginia Halls, Namas Chandra

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15 Scopus citations


We exposed a headform instrumented with 10 pressure sensors mounted flush with the surface to a shock wave with three nominal intensities: 70, 140 and 210 kPa. The headform was mounted on a Hybrid III neck, in a rigid configuration to eliminate motion and associated pressure variations. We evaluated the effect of the test location by placing the headform inside, at the end and outside of the shock tube. The shock wave intensity gradually decreases the further it travels in the shock tube and the end effect degrades shock wave characteristics, which makes comparison of the results obtained at three locations a difficult task. To resolve these issues, we developed a simple strategy of data reduction: the respective pressure parameters recorded by headform sensors were divided by their equivalents associated with the incident shock wave. As a result, we obtained a comprehensive set of non-dimensional parameters. These non-dimensional parameters (or amplification factors) allow for direct comparison of pressure waveform characteristic parameters generated by a range of incident shock waves differing in intensity and for the headform located in different locations. Using this approach, we found a correlation function which allows prediction of the peak pressure on the headform that depends only on the peak pressure of the incident shock wave (for specific sensor location on the headform), and itis independent on the headform location. We also found a similar relationship for the rise time. However, for the duration and impulse, comparable correlation functions do not exist. These findings using a headform with simplified geometry are baseline values and address a need for the development of standardized parameters for the evaluation of personal protective equipment (PPE) under shock wave loading.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0198968
JournalPloS one
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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