Flame retardants
 save lives and protect property by helping to prevent fires from  starting or from spreading. Today it is possible to treat most potentially 
flammable materials with Flame Retardants to make them much more difficult to ignite (ignition resistant) and to  significantly reduce and slow down flame spread. In this modern world the increasing presence  of flammable materials in our homes (curtains, carpets, decorations, plastics etc.) a typical room in a house can reach 600°C  in 3 minutes (Flash Over). Flame retardant materials in consumer goods and furnishing help to avoid  many fires, and add life-saving minutes to  escape time in many others. Flame Retardants are also important when we are out and about, all forms of transportation require the use of Flame Retardants to protect the public from fire's and give them more time to exit the vehicle to  safety.  Flame Retardants are additives (discrete molecules or polymers) or reactives that can be  added to or  applied as a  treatment to  materials  such as plastics, textiles, foams, wood etc. Alternatively they can be used during the production  process as a  chemical modification of some plastic materials. In all cases, effective fire safety will  only be achieved if flame retardants specifically designed for the material to be treated are used appropriately. Their effect is to reduce the  chances  of a fire  starting by  providing increased resistance to ignition. Even if ignition does occur, flame retardants will act to delay the spread of flame, providing extra time in the early stages when the fire can be extinguished or an escape can be made.

In many cases the use of Flame Retardants  is required in a polymer used to make an article in order for it to pass a specific Flammability Test that a particular standard calls for that governs the articles use (the Standard in turn maybe be called for in a Code). Hence the use of Flame Retardants is driven by Codes and Standards and we have a whole section devoted to this complex topic. There are also other regulations such as RoHs and WEEE that govern what type of flame retardant can be used, many Flame Retardants that have been deemed environmentally un-friendly have been phased out entirely or their use is restricted in some fashion.

Site Aims

This site is aiming to be your "One Stop Shop" for information on the complex Field of Flame Retardants and Fire Safety. We welcome any input from others in the field to help make this a better site.

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