Evaluation of Human Performance While Wearing Respirators

The goal of this study was to assess the feasibility of respirator use in Air Traffic Control and Technical Operations. The authors evaluated several models of Powered Air Purifying Respirators (PAPRs) and N95 respirators for usability, effects on human performance, and effects on the wearer’s well-being. The authors found that binoculars could not be used with any of the PAPRs. Wearing a PAPR affected communication, but the characteristics of the respirator, especially the sound level and frequency spectrum of the noise, played a significant role in determining the extent of the effect and the subjective experience of wearing it. The accuracy levels of face-to-face communication were below those that were considered to be minimally acceptable. For the N95 respirators, we found negative effects on face-to-face communication and observed obstructiveness during simulated maintenance.

  • Record URL:
  • Corporate Authors:

    Federal Aviation Administration

    William J. Hughes Technical Center, Atlantic City International Airport
    Atlantic City, NJ  United States  08405

    Federal Aviation Administration

    800 Independence Avenue, SW
    Washington, DC  United States  20591
  • Authors:
    • Hah, Sehchang
    • Yuditsky, Tanya
    • Schulz, Kenneth A
    • Dorsey, Henry
    • Deshmukh, Atul R
    • Sharra, Jill
  • Publication Date: 2009-12


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Edition: Technical Report
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 56p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01526256
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: DOT/FAA/TC-09/10
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI, USDOT
  • Created Date: Apr 28 2014 12:50PM