11th AMI "Fire Resistance in Plastics"
The 11th AMI “Fire Resistance in Plastics” conference, Cologne, 6-8 December 2016, brought together polymer manufacturers, compounding and masterbatch companies, polymer user industries, and flame retardant (FR) producers and technology experts.
AMI (Applied Market Information)
Noru Tsalic, AMI (Applied Market Information), the conference organisers, reminded of his message from the 2015 conference: fires continue to cause deaths and injuries in developed countries, with an even greater challenge in developing countries (60 000 fire deaths per year in India alone).
Maryline Desseix, PolyOne, explained why flame retardants are essential to protect lives and property. A video from Lancashire UK Fire Services shows how flashover can develop in less than three minutes in a home, even when materials comply with fire safety standards, whereas fire services take around 8 minutes on average to arrive.
Interview: Noit Shahar, Kafrit
Noit Shahar, Kafrit Israel, expects growing demand for flame retardants in developing countries, particularly in buildings, transportation and injection molding (electronics, engineering plastics).
Interview: Jacob Scherf, Polymer Asia
Jacob Scherf and Nguyen Thi Kim Quy, Polymer Asia Vietnam, explain that product manufacturers in Vietnam are mostly multi-nationals, producing for export, and therefore implement Japan, EU and US quality and fire safety requirements.
Ugo Zucchelli, Italmatch, presented inorganic phosphate salt PIN FRs (proprietary phosphinates) in polypropylene, polyethylene EVA. These PIN FRs act in both the solid phase (formation of protective char layer) and by releasing phosphorus radicals into the fire gases.
Bensi Kaul, MCA Technologies, underlined the need to look carefully at the real cost impacts of flame retardant use. In some cases, weight is critical for plastics, in others it is wall thickness. Mr. Kaul considers that organic and non-halogenated FRs are therefore advantageous, because they enable lower density.
Jan-Pleun Lens, FRX Polymers, presented the use of the company’s polymeric phosphonate (phosphorus PIN) flame retardants in a range of polymers: PET, epoxy, polyurethane foam and polycarbonate. The products are available as polymers, functionalised oligomers and carbonate co-polymer, for different applications.
Politecnico di Torino
Alberto Frache, Politecnico di Torino, presented investigations into flame retardancy of highly filled plastics, in particular polypropylene.
Interview: Shin Nakamura and Shinichi Ikoma, Daihachi Chemical
Shin Nakamura and Shinichi Ikoma, Daihachi Chemical Japan, underline that FRs must address fire performance, smoke emissions and toxicity. The company’s phosphorus-based PIN FRs are developed to not generate problematic smoke emissions.