Addressing the Need for Protective Gear


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Written by W. L. Gore & Associates

The rules of engagement in the world of protective gear are changing. Chemical warfare, for example, is no longer just a possibility. It’s a growing offshore battlefield threat and a Homeland Security concern as well. Meanwhile other disasters, including a growing number of 100-year floods and massive hurricanes, appear to be on the rise.

These and other factors have increased the need for protective gear worn by the personnel brought in to mop up chemical spills, or work in other dangerous, contaminated environments. Recent events in the world, prefaced by two US Army events this past summer attended by W. L. Gore & Associates’ ChemBio teams, underscore this fact.

At the 2017 CBRN Exhibition held at Fort Lenard Wood, Missouri, Gore’s ChemBio scientists and product experts showcased several life-protecting innovations, including their ground-breaking protective outerwear, made from GORE® CHEMPAK® fabric with stretch technology. CBRN stands for chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear. Garments made from this fabric are ideal for operations that potentially involve chemical and biological threats in vapor, aerosol and liquid form.

Fort Wood is training headquarters for the U.S. Army’s Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear school. The fourth annual CBRN Exhibition was hosted by the Chemical Corps Regimental Association (CCRA) and took place during the CBRN Senior Executive Leader’s Symposium at Fort Wood. The Exhibition coincides with briefings with the commandant of the training school. It was an important setting to discuss the multiple protective capabilities of Gore’s chemical and biological protective fabric solutions.

chempak-fabricDesigned for increased mobility and to remain highly protective against ChemBio hazards during physically-demanding missions, the GORE® CHEMPAK® selectively permeable fabric is lightweight and flexible, providing wearers with unencumbered movement, increased range of movement and improved peripheral visibility. The fabric’s breathable performance helps minimize thermal impact by allowing perspiration vapor (sweat) to escape and the stretch construction of the close-fitting undergarment provides additional comfort by eliminating the thermal insulating layer that surrounds your body.

Applications include search and rescue, SWAT and high-risk entry, hazardous material emergency missions, WMD or terrorist incidents and contamination and decontamination.

The CBRN Exhibition at Fort Wood is considered one of the leading gatherings of US military, government, academic and industry leadership in the CBRN and WMD (weapons of mass destruction) sectors. The Exhibition is a showcase for leading technologies and practices that can be used to by the defense industry and others in the event of a nuclear disaster, chemical warfare event or ChemBio disaster.

GORE® CHEMPAK® products were also showcased a few weeks ago at the National Defense Industry Association (NDIA)-CBRN defense Conference and Exhibition, which took place in August in Wilmington, Delaware. The purpose of that annual show is to promote the exchange of new scientific, technical and operational information to defense, private industry and homeland security decision makers. Here, Gore’s ChemBio team brought samples of their new protective outerwear designed with GORE® CHEMPAK® with stretch technology.

For over 30 years, Gore has been a pioneer developing high-performance barrier fabrics for the military, law enforcement, fire fighters, EMS personnel and more and staying at the forefront of R&D in protective gear is a key mission.

For more information, you can go to: GORE® Chemical/Biological Protective Clothing System