Thermal Environmental Testing of Hyperbaric Chambers

In accordance with IMCA D 02/06 January 2006.

For saturation diving operations, there is a basic requirement of support life to provide a comfortable living environment for the living chamber occupants under pressure in respect to maintaining temperature, humidity and carbon dioxide (CO2) levels.

This is especially important for Hyperbaric Evacuation Systems (HES), such as self-propelled hyperbaric lifeboats (SPHL). For HES systems, the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has formalised this requirement and IMCA has issued a protocol guideline to test and evaluate the environment control systems for Temperature, Humidity and CO2 levels – ‘IMCA D 02/06 The Evaluation and Testing of the Environment Control of Hyperbaric Evacuation Systems’.

Additional to the above for Saturation Systems classed under DnVGL, there is also a requirement for the environmental control units (ECU) of Living Chambers to be performance tested, so as to be able to maintain suitable temperature, humidity and CO2 levels.

KBA provides Thermal Environmental Testing of both HES and Saturation Living Chambers in compliance to the above standards using our own purpose built testing equipment and software and conducted by in-house technicians. This is in line with IMCA D 02/06 to function test the ability of hyperbaric life boats and associated facilities. KBA has set about establishing methods, personnel and equipment to test for compliance with standards and to issue an independent report for submission to interested parties.

KBA views the testing of hyperbaric evacuation systems (HES) as a fundamental safety objective and in keeping with the associated importance placed on health and safety matters; we adhere to the requirements of the codes plus investigate other likely or possible scenarios. To this aim, the reports generated contain factual statistics as well as a discussion narrative.

KBA monitors industry standards and will always revise documents to ensure complete compliance with those codes. The aim is to test hi and low limits of heat control as well as a quantitative measure of CO2 absorption. Reports are generated to give a quick overview for those interested parties needing to gain an essential understanding as well as provide substantial base data for those parties more concerned with condition extremes. Where objectives are not met, KBA makes observations and suggestions in the report and can, if requested, provide engineering to increase the deficient capacity.


Any test performed is tangible only by the issuance of a report. KBA’s reports are well known for their objective and constructive content as well as ensuring that they contain all the essential elements. The reports contain text, data, graphics and photographs. All KBA reports are presented in a stand alone file that can be presented to the client. Further, KBA reports are issued in a pdf format on a CDR for multiple printing as and where necessary.

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