Plastic products require a special focus as they can be ignited by a short circuit, overheating, and other external influences resulting in a blazing fire within minutes. Flame retardants can inhibit, or at least delay, the combustion and spread of fire so that valuable time is gained to enable fire-fighting and evacuation measures to be carried out. This in turn, reduces the chance of serious damage to property or in extreme cases, injuries or the loss of life.
Method of operation
In order for a fire to start burning, the combination of a flammable material and the presence of oxygen are required. Flame retardants work by using a chemical reaction to disrupt the interaction between the flammable material and oxygen. They are designed so that the chemical reaction starts with the addition of considerable heat energy. The products of this chemical reaction work both physically and chemically, to reduce the temperature of the flame and to cut off the oxygen supply. The result is effectively a suffocation of the fire that either extinguishes the fire completely, or at the very least, delays the spread of the fire considerably. Flame retardants that are effective in the gas phase have proved popular due to their high efficiency even when used in low dosages. As a result, the host plastic experiences almost no mechanical or optical degradation and the processability remains virtually unaffected.
Flammability standards regulate the characteristics, test methods and regulatory approvals of plastics in different applications: building, interior furnishing, vehicles, electrical and electronics, furniture, textiles and many more. Worldwide, there are about 700 standards relating to flame retardants and fire safety testing.
Gabriel-Chemie Group supports you with consulting and technical advice when there are questions about flammability standards. It is our aim to provide the right solution for the required final product.