Fire-retardant (FR) materials have become an important ingredient in modern construction. With more and more skyscrapers towering towards the skies in bustling cities, fire protection has taken centre stage across the world. Using genuine FR material is critical to safety in the Fire Rated Construction System.
A typical ACP-cladded façade in India has a frame structure comprising a non-load-bearing brick wall, followed by plaster, steel frame and an ACP envelope fixed on the frame. As an important criterion for resistance to fire, the ACP envelope should contain fire and retain its structural integrity up to 2 hours. But that’s not the only feature that contributes to fire protection. An authentic rating for resistance to fire also takes into account that smoke kills faster than fire, among other vital factors. This is where Aludecor’s FR ACP, FireWall stands above the rest.
The core secret
FireWall is a non-halogenated FR material that produces water vapour when it heats up.
It does not produce toxic gases like the halogenated materials. Magnesium hydroxide (MDH) is the non-halogenated material that is mixed with PE to form the core of Aludecor’s FR products. MDH has a better fire-resistance performance than aluminium trihydrate (ATH), the other non-halogenated material, owing to higher decomposition temperature. Furthermore MDH is more environment-friendly than other similar materials.
MDH delays the PE transformation from solid to plastic (the point of ignition) up to 360°C, by releasing water molecules and bringing down the temperature continuously.
|Core details||Polyethylene||Magnesium hydroxide (MDH)||Aluminium trihydrate (ATH)|
|Chemical reaction||CH2 + O2 = CO2 + H2O||Mg(OH)2 = MgO + H2O||2Al(OH)3 = Al2O3 + 3H2O|
|Decomposition temperature||90oC to 110oC||310oC to 360oC||190oC to 240oC|
|Status||Heat generation||Heat absorption||Heat absorption|
Quality check at the in-house FR Lab
Before going for the final production, each batch of the mineral core produced in the Baby Line is thoroughly tested.
|Ignitability Test||Non-combustibility Test|
|Checks the magnitude of ignition in compliance with EN1182.||Checks at what temperature the material would be set aflame.|
Materials that catch fire easily are more ignitable, flammable or combustible. For example, paper is more ignitable or flammable than wood. Various testing procedures can be treated as effective tools to quantify the capability of any material to resist fire. There are international protocols in place to determine the flammability or combustibility of different kinds of substances.
The EN13501-1 is an effective way to test combustibility of various materials.