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Volumetric and space requirements of the offshore workforce: the effects of donning a survival suit.

Ledingham, Robert J.; Stewart, Arthur D.


Robert J. Ledingham


Confined space working is common place within the offshore oil and gas infrastructure and it is a persons absolute size that governs their fit within this built environment. The design and adjustability of the environment must be based on the assumed size of the workforce; 95th percentile of the male size. The last anthropometric survey of the offshore workforce was conducted almost 30 years ago and since then the average weight of the workforce has increased by 19%; although the size and shape change associated with this increase remains unknown. With advances in portable 3D scanning technology and its potential for anthropometric measurement; this study aimed to quantify the volumetric and space requirements of the offshore workforce and size increases associated with donning personal protective equipment. Forty-three male participants were measured using both a static Hamamatsu and a portable Artec L 3D scanner in three different clothing assemblages. Volumetric and linear measures indicated a 71.3% increase in total body volume and a 101.9% gain in space requirements associated with donning a survival suit. Size increases due to survival clothing was found to have a close relationship with BMI; smaller individuals increase in body volume and space requirements more than their larger counterparts, r = 0.815 and r = 0.659 respectively. This pilot study identifies a need for further research into space requirements, especially in confined spaces and using specialist clothing.

Start Date Nov 19, 2013
Publication Date Nov 30, 2013
Publisher Hometrica Consulting
Pages 317-322
Institution Citation LEDINGHAM, R.J. and STEWART A.D. 2013. Volumetric and space requirements of the offshore workforce: the effects of donning a survival suit. In Proceedings of the 4th International conference on 3D body scanning technologies (3DBST 2013), 19-20 November 2013, Long Beach, USA. Ascona: Hometrica Consulting [online], pages 317-322. Available from:
Keywords 3D scanning; Anthropometry; Body volume; Space requirements; Survival clothing


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