An Investigation into the Effect of Liquid Accumulation on Thermo-Physiologic State using an Advanced Moisture Model Coupled with a High Resolution Human Thermal Model



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2023 International Conference on Environmental Systems


A physics-based mathematical model for simulating heat and moisture transport on the skin and within clothing was developed to improve the accuracy of human thermal modeling predictions. In a previous study, a set of sweating hotplate experiments was specifically created to obtain test data for model validation. The clothing moisture model was subsequently coupled with a human thermal model and tested by simulating human experiments described in the open literature, which served to verify the model’s ability to predict whole body thermo-physiologic state in work-rest cycles during which sweating was known to occur. In this study, a human subject test was specifically designed to validate the model’s ability to predict local and whole body sweat evaporation and accumulation on the surface of the body. The human subject test incorporated twelve clothed male subjects of moderate physical fitness, ages 18-30, which were prescribed a work-rest cycle in a climate-controlled chamber (25 °C, 50% RH). Two activity levels were considered during the active stage (4 MET vs. 6.5 MET), and two sets of ending ambient conditions were considered for the final rest stage (25 °C vs. 15 °C, 50% RH). Model predictions were compared to the measured local skin temperatures, core temperatures, and whole body sweat losses. In general, the model was able to reproduce the trends observed in the human subject trial, but more importantly, provided insight into how dynamic changes in liquid content can impact the evolution of local and whole body thermo-physiologic state. This study demonstrates the ability of an advanced moisture model to capture distinct physics attributable to moisture accumulation, allowing for increased accuracy in predicting human thermal state and for interpreting the results of measurements derived from human subject tests.


Timofey Golubev, ThermoAnalytics, Inc., USA
Mark Hepokoski, ThermoAnalytics, Inc., USA
Kevin Ward, W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc., USA
Joel Coffel, NASA Johnson Space Center(JSC), USA
Hee Jong Song,
ICES513: Human Health and Performance Analysis
The 52nd International Conference on Environmental Systems was held in Calgary, Canada, on 16 July 2023 through 20 July 2023.


human thermal model, moisture model, sweat evaporation, liquid accumulation, clothing model