The Experimental Design of a Mobile Pressure Suit

[+] Author and Article Information
A. S. Iberall

General Technical Services, Inc., Upper Darby, Pa.

J. Basic Eng 92(2), 251-264 (Jun 01, 1970) (14 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3424984 History: Received December 23, 1969; Online October 27, 2010


An important objective in the development of a pressure suit for a human being is to permit the wearer full mobility, whether pressurized or not, without interfering with physical capability. Although the human skin is stretched during body motion, there is virtually no stretch along certain lines, here called “lines of nonextension.” This fact was utilized as the design basis for a series of experimental pressure suits that were developed to demonstrate that it was possible to achieve natural mobility and minimal ballooning in such suits. The detailed program of investigation pursued during the phase of study being reported on was: (1) to map out these lines of nonextension; (2) to test whether string elements of high elastic modulus, a connected network, could be laid along these lines of nonextension without resulting in any constraint to mobility; (3) to obtain a highly mobile pressure-retaining layer to be constrained by the net; and (4) to construct and demonstrate an entire pressure-retaining garment system that makes use of all necessary layers and string elements in a completely connected netted covering for the body with minimal constraint to mobility at pressures up to 5 psi. The technique, result, and collateral observations relevant to each of these phases are described. A mobile, pressure-retaining garment was developed by building each structural, functional layer into the composite garment in accordance with the basic design theory.

Copyright © 1970 by ASME
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