INVESTIGATION OF THE PERFORMANCE OF PERSONAL FLOTATION DEVICES

An experimental investigation was performed to study various aspects of an existing theory for flotation equilibrium angle of a person wearing a personal flotation device (PFD) in water. The major objectives were determination of the validity of the theory, and derivation of a method for determining the buoyant force and center of buoyancy of a PFD when worn by a person. Additionally, information was obtained on the sensitivity of the theory to small changes in variables, the variability of repetitive measurements of certain human-body characteristics required by the theory (namely, lung vector and intrinsic stiffness vector), the variation with time of day of an individual's intrinsic stiffness vector, and the comparative effectiveness of five PFD's. The experiments used eight human subjects (130-240 lbs. in weight), five PFD's, and five different times of day. Because of the small number of experiments used, the statistical significance of some results is limited. A recommended approach to evaluating PFD effectiveness using experiments with mannequins is described.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Underwriters Laboratories, Incorporated

    Tampa, FL  USA 
  • Publication Date: 1975-8

Media Info

  • Pagination: 129 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00130509
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Technical Information Service
  • Report/Paper Numbers: USCG-D-168-75 Final Rpt.
  • Contract Numbers: DOT-CG-25112-A
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Mar 29 1976 12:00AM