Cryogenic Protective Clothing
Cryogenic liquids, gasses and materials have a lot of important uses that impact our daily lives in several different ways. Cryogenic gases have been used to fuel NASA space shuttles as well as producing, storing and shipping medications, labs and food from food processing plants.
Due to the temperatures and risks involved in contact with cryogenic liquids, the workers in industries that use them face extreme cold hazards such as frostbite, releasing of toxic gasses and in some cases, explosion hazards due to cryogenic materials such as liquid hydrogen’s flammability.
National Safety Apparel manufactures cryogenic protective clothing including gloves, aprons and safety kits for working with cryogenic liquids. NSA FR clothing also helps to protect workers in medical, food processing and chemical industries that use liquid nitrogen flammable gasses that present explosion hazards. View our cryogenic protective clothing, get in touch with our customer service team to inquire about our personal protective equipment or find out how to buy.
Extreme Cold and Frostbite
Frostbite can occur quickly when exposed to extreme cold temperatures even for a short amount of time. When handling liquid nitrogen and other cryogenic materials, frostbite can occur even faster as the materials typically are colder than any other temperature ever recorded on earth. Prolonged exposure causes frostbite and unprotected skin effects skin color and can cause thermal burns. Splashes and liquid filling up inside of gloves or inside of other cryogenic protective clothing can only handle exposure for a limited time before the clothing must be discarded.
Three types of protection are related to PPE related to handling cryogenic materials as laid about by EN 511, the European glove standard that applies to gloves that protect against convective and contact cold levels. Resistance for cryogenic protective clothing and PPE for convective cold is measured in performance levels cold temperatures are transferred. Resistant to contact cold is measured in performance levels against the gloves contact with the cold object. Permeability to water is the other performance level for protection in cryogenic gloves related to the glove's resistant to water.
The performance levels for convective and contact cold range from 0-4, based on tests of temperature drop and energy used to keep wearers hand warm in contact with cold. When working with cryogenic liquids such as nitrogen, waterproof gloves are recommended over water resistant cryogenic gloves for protection for immersion.
Waterproof cryogenic gloves provide additional splash protection and should always be loose fitting so they can be discarded easily if a worker comes into contact with cryogenic liquids and get inside of gloves, exposing the skin directly. National Safety Apparel's cryogenic aprons are only water resistant, but also go through EN 511 tests for contact and convective cold levels.
Cryogenic liquids can bubble and splash and it can be dangerous to expose your face and eyes to. Faceshields should always be worn when working with and handling cryogenic liquids. A clear faceshield from polycarbonate that can attach to most hard hats provides protection for workers' face and eyes against incidental cryogenic liquid splash and exposure.
National Safety Apparel’s cryogenic safety kits include both water resistant and waterproof cryogenic gloves, cryogenic aprons and faceshields.
Fire and Explosion Hazards
Cryogenic liquids and gasses are highly flammable, especially liquid hydrogen. Pressure and the environment in which they are stored can easily ignite cryogenic materials and cause fires and explosions that are dangerous and potentially deadly.
In labs working with cryogenic materials where explosion hazards are a risk present due to these materials and how highly flammable they may be, wearing flame resistant clothing can be the difference between additional, severe injuries and fatalities. Flame resistant clothing that is duel-certified for arc flash protection and flash fire protection reduce potential severity of injuries in case of a fire caused by flammable cryogenic materials.
FR clothing doesn’t ignite and won’t contribute to burn injuries caused by fire, providing protection for wearers in labs working with cryogenic materials in the event of a fire caused by them.
National Safety Apparel manufactures personal protective equipment that provides full coverage including long sleeve shirts so workers have complete flame-resistant materials limiting skin or body exposure when working with cryogenic materials. Find out how to buy National Safety Apparel products or contact our customer service team with more questions.