Unlike those fabrics that have been specially treated, inherent fabrics do not have to undergo any type of process in order to make them flame resistant and are instead composed of fibres that are already innately flame resistant.
These properties cannot be diminished through use or laundering, meaning that the product will remain effective and wearable for as long as the user requires it.
Inherent fabrics are often either modacrylic or aramid and two well know brand names for these are Protal® (modacrylic) and Nomex® (aramid). STRATA® ARc flame resistant (FR) clothing and PPE is generally produced using Protal® modacrylic fibres in conjunction with other yarns including cotton, polyester, and elastane. The way these yarns are blended affects the resulting fabric’s technical and protective properties in addition to its comfort and washing performance.
The primary advantages of inherent FR fabrics are that they provide a high level of protection from thermal hazards; often present higher thermal protective performance (TPP) scores than treated fabrics; long life service; protective properties do not wash out over time; will not ignite in normal O2 concentrations; may char or expand to provide increased thermal resistance under continuous exposure to a thermal hazard; lightweight.
Why you should care
The properties most important to both employers and wearers of FR clothing and PPE are protection, comfort, and value. Durability of these properties is critical. What matters most is that products are made from an FR fabric that retains its flame resistant properties for the life of the garment – and that the fabric has a proven track record of success. See video below the shocking difference on well Inherent and Treated Fabric can protect you in an Arc Flash.
All STRATA FR products are independently tested, have spent a number of years on the market, and come with a strong reputation for quality. When buying this type of clothing and PPE, employers save money and get good value as they last longer than the alternatives, meaning they need to purchase them less often. Additionally, their workers have peace of mind knowing that they are always adequately protected whilst working – allowing them to focus fully on the task at hand.