Laboratory Testing of the CSE SR-100 Self-Contained Self-Rescuer for Ruggedness and Reliability
Description:The U.S. Bureau of Mines subjected the CSE SR-lOO self-contained self-rescuer (SCSR) approved by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) to a series of laboratory treatments designed to simulate various environmental conditions in underground coal mines. The tests were designed to predict the ability of the self-rescuers to withstand those environmental stresses without causing a decrease in wearer protection. The apparatus were heated to 710 C for 48 h, cooled to -450 C for 16 h, vibrated for 9 h, and dropped 1 m on each axis. A critical concern was internal damage to an apparatus, without any obvious external signs, that would cause it to malfunction or seriously degrade its performance. Carbon dioxide (C02) levels in apparatus with combined treatments were higher than in apparatus with individual treatments and untreated apparatus. The higher levels remained within safe limits, however. None of the treatments caused venting of the small oxygen cylinder that provides starter oxygen. Some bottles were found to be empty because of manufacturing defects in the burst disks. This problem was corrected in later models. The heat treatments did make the case ends more difficult to remove and the breathing bag sticky and subsequently more difficult to unfold. An apparatus that was dropped and vibrated had a broken desiccant bag that released some of its contents which compromised the seal of the relief valve. The case was dented from the drops. As with the first-generation self-rescuers, if there is visible damage to the case of the apparatus, the apparatus should be considered to be internally damaged and must be removed from service.
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