The Evaluation of Human Thermo Regulatory Responses in Varying Weather States

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TypeTechnical Report
Series titleTechnical Report; no. TR-2009-18
SubjectImmersion suit; immersion; deep body; temperature; heat flow; skin temperature; wind; waves
AbstractThe thermal responses to environmental conditions consisting of varying wind speeds and wave heights were measured using volunteers at the National Research Council of Canada’s Institute for Ocean Technology. Twelve healthy males performed three, three hour immersions in Calm Water, Weather 1 (wind speed = 3.5 m·s-1, max wave height = 0.34m), and Weather 2 (wind speed = 4.6 m·s-1, max wave height = 0.64m) in a commercially available immersion suit. The two weather conditions produced significantly greater heat flow in the participants compared to the Calm condition. There was no significant difference in deep body temperature across all immersion conditions; however Weather 2 produced a significantly greater drop in mean body temperature (-1.51°C) compared to the Calm condition (-1.10°C). Small changes in cutaneous blood flow and increased metabolic heat production allowed the participants to successfully thermoregulate in the environmental conditions tested. It is recommended that future testing of humans in immersion suits incorporate the increased heat loss due to wind and waves.
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AffiliationNRC Institute for Ocean Technology; National Research Council Canada
Peer reviewedNo
NPARC number18227290
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Record identifier86599921-c0b3-432b-9367-d508dbdde1ff
Record created2011-07-07
Record modified2016-10-03
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