Development of Empirical Equations to Predict Sweating Skin Surface Temperature for Thermal Manikins in Warm Environments.

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Clothing evaporative resistance is one of the most important parameters for clothing comfort. The clothing evaporation resistance can be measured on a sweating guarded hotplate, a sweating thermal manikin or a human subject. The sweating thermal manikin gives the most accurate value on evaporative resistance of the whole garment ensemble compared to the other two methods. The determination of clothing evaporative resistance on a thermal manikin requires sweating simulation. This can be achieved by either a pre-wetted fabric skin on top of the manikin (TORE), or a waterproof but permeable Gore-tex skin filled with water inside. The addition of a fabric skin can introduce a temperature difference between the manikin surface and the sweating skin surface. However, calculations on clothing evaporative resistance have often been based on the thermal manikin surface temperature. A previous study showed that the temperature differences can cause an error up to 35.9 % on the clothing evaporative resistance. In order to reduce such an error, an empirical equation to predict the skin surface temperature might be helpful. In this study, a cotton knit fabric skin and a Gore-tex skin were used to simulate two types of sweating. The cotton fabric skin was rinsed with tap water and centrifuged in a washing machine for 4 seconds to ensure no water drip. A Gore-tex skin was put on top of the pre-wetted cotton skin on a dry heated thermal manikin ‘Tore’ in order to simulate senseless sweating, similar to thermal manikins ‘Coppelius’ and ‘Walter’. Another simulation involved the pre-wetted fabric skin covered on top of the Gore-tex skin in order to simulate sensible sweating. This type of sweating simulation can be widely found on many thermal manikins worldwide, e.g. ‘Newton’. Six temperature sensors (Sensirion Inc, Switzerland) were attached on six sites of the skin outer surface by white thread rings to record the skin surface temperature. Twelve skin tests for each skin combination were performed at three different ambient temperatures: 34, 25 and 20 oC. Two empirical equations to predict the skin surface temperature were developed based on the mean manikin surface temperature, mean fabric skin surface temperature and the total heat loss. The prediction equations for the senseless sweating and sensible sweating on the thermal manikin ‘Tore’ were Tsk=34.0-0.0146HL and Tsk=34.0-0.0190HL, respectively. Further study should validate these two empirical equations, however.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics


  • sweating fbaric skin, skin temperature, thermal manikin, empirical equation
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Publication categoryResearch
Event8th International Thermal Manikin and Modeling Meeting (8I3M) - Victoria, BC, Canada
Duration: 2010 Aug 23 → …


Conference8th International Thermal Manikin and Modeling Meeting (8I3M)
CityVictoria, BC
Period2010/08/23 → …

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