1North American Flame Retardant Alliance (NAFRA)
The term "flame retardant" refers to the function of an additive or component within a material to make that material more resistant to ignition, or reduce the rate that a flame will spread once the material is ignited. A variety of chemicals, with varying properties and structures, act as flame retardants and these chemicals are often combined for effectiveness to help prevent or reduce the severity of fires. Click
here to read about the different classes of flame retardants.
Flame retardants are added to different materials to prevent fires from starting, limit the spread of fire and minimize fire damage. Flame retardants can act in three key ways to stop the burning process:
Today, flame retardants are used predominantly in four major areas:
Some of the information on this page comes from the
North American Flame Retardant Alliance (NAFRA). Visit the
European Flame Retardant Association (EFRA) to learn more about European fire safety standards.
Learn about the fire risks in your television. This video shows the importance of high fire safety standards and the layer of fire protection that flame retardant materials can provide when they are added to consumer electronics. While televisions and the materials used in TVs have changed dramatically over the last decades, the need for fire safety has not. Today, potentially flammable polymeric materials are used in modern flat screen TVs and these can contribute to fires as the first item ignited or as a second article ignited adding to the overall fuel load.
The video shows two TV sets (same model and brand) manufactured for two different markets. The first one is exposed to a small open flame (50 watts) for just 60 seconds. Within two to three minutes, the TV is engulfed in flames. The second test was performed under identical conditions. It shows the same TV set model exposed to a larger ignition source (500 W) undergoing multiple ignition attempt (60 seconds each). Even after being exposed to a larger flame, the television fails to ignite. The tests were performed by experts of the Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) in San Antonio, Texas, United States.
For more information on flame retardants and examples of how flame retardants add a valuable layer to fire safety, visit
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