Protective Clothing Puncture Testing

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Protective Clothing Puncture Testing

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Puncture testing of protective clothing is an important step in determining the quality and performance of the product. Protective clothing puncture testing evaluates the puncture resistance of protective clothing materials such as plastics or elastomeric films, coated fabrics, flexible materials, laminates, and textile materials. The standard tests includes  procedures where a puncture probe of specified dimensions is used for puncturing test specimens. 

Why is puncture testing protective clothing important?

  • Occupational exposures to bloodborne pathogens (BBP) caused by needlestick injuries are a concern for healthcare professionals, law enforcement officers, first responders and others.
  • Transmission of diseases such as Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Hepatitis C (Hep C) as a result of percutaneous needlestick injuries have been documented worldwide. These diseases can lead to life-long chronic health problems and possibly death.
  • Work practice safety procedures, including the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gloves, aprons, and sleeves, are used to diminish the risk of occupational exposure to BBP’s through needlestick injury.
  • Fine object puncture threats create common potential exposure risk for medical, sanitation, and recycling industries. 

What is ASTM F1342?

ASTM F1342 evaluates the puncture resistance of a protective clothing material specimen by measuring the compressive force required to cause a pointed puncture probe to penetrate through the specimen. The test evaluates puncture resistance of protective clothing materials, specifically for puncture forced on specimens perpendicular to material surface. In this test there is no supporting structure under the material specimen.

What are the application requirements for testing protective clothing according to ASTM F1342?

  • The test is conducted at a speed of 500 mm/min (20 in/mim)
  • The compression force required depends on the puncture strength of the material

What is ASTM F2878?

ASTM F2878 evaluates puncture resistance of protective clothing materials including plastics or elastomeric films, coated fabrics, flexible materials, laminates, leathers, or textile materials. The test is used to determine the force required to cause a sharp-edged puncture probe (hypodermic needle) to penetrate through protective clothing material. The test evaluates needle puncture resistance of protective clothing materials, perpendicular to the material's surface and with no supporting structure under/behind the material specimen. The test is designed to evaluate a 25-gauge probe (size of a hypodermic needle) by measuring the force it takes to pierce the sample. 

What are the application requirements for testing protective clothing according to ASTM F2878?

  • Test speed is 500 mm/min (20 in/min)
  • Test forces depend on the sample and below 500 N (100 lbf)