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J and K Ross and Dupont Personal Protection have jointly developed the Arcban range of CE-certified arc-flash protective garments, made from Nomex.

Following a risk-assessment study and the implementation of risk control measures, if it has still been decided that personal protective equipment (PPE) will also be worn, the correct level of arc-flash protective clothing will be provided.

The Arcban range of garments has been designed to be layered to offer the relevant level of protection when required and to ensure that the worker is not restricted or compromised from cumbersome clothing.

J and K Ross and Dupont recommend that all the layers, including undergarments, are made of Nomex, which is an inherently flame-resistant meta-aramid fibre that does not melt, drip or support combustion in the air.

The thermal behaviour of Nomex is a result of its molecular structure and not by applying a flame-retardant chemical substance to the fabric, yarn, fibre or polymer.

This means that Nomex offers permanent protection that cannot be washed or worn away.

The Arcban range offers head-to-toe solutions, providing various levels of electric arc protection, and includes undergarments and specialised workwear along with head and face protection that can be worn with appropriate face visors and helmets.

Flame-resistant (FR) clothing can be rated based on its arc thermal performance value (ATPV) in cal/cm2.

To properly protect a worker, the ATPV rating of the FR clothing must exceed the calculated prospective incident energy caused by an electric arc flash event onto the worker at a given location.

Layering the garments can help to increase the ATPV levels owing to the air gaps in between the garment layers.

It can also help with matching the hazard and risk with the appropriately designed PPE, resulting in the wearer having more fit-for-purpose and comfortable solutions for the required hazardous environment.

For example, a person might choose to use the Arcban polo shirt and trousers as standard – everyday FR workwear because it is practical and comfortable to wear – and, when in a higher risk environment, layer up with a coverall resulting in the combination of these two layers providing higher ATPV values.

To attempt to achieve this combined result with a single-layer fabric solution may result in the clothing being very heavy and uncomfortable to wear for a full shift.

All the garments are CE certified and allow the user to select the correct level of protection for the risk, avoiding heavy and uncomfortable protection.

Chris Ross, managing director of J and K Ross said: ‘Nomex is an established product and recognised worldwide for its flame-resistant and antistatic properties; therefore, it was essential to work with Dupont to develop this arc range and manufacture garments from Nomex.

‘The garments are also durable and easy to care for and maintain,’ added Ross.

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