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Influence of heat-stable filler on the thermal shielding performance of water-based intumescent fire-resistive coating for structural steel applications


Intumescent coatings are the newest passive fireproofing materials which maintain structural integrity of high-rise buildings in fire events. The present work focuses on the influence of zirconium silicate as a heat-stable filler in intumescent coatings. Different coatings were formulated by varying the zirconium silicate concentration from 1, 3, 5, 8, and 10 on parts per hundred basis (phr). Fire performance of the coatings was then determined by fire test using a Bunsen burner fire flame at 950°C for 1 h. The degradation of coatings was examined by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The morphology of the intumescent chars was analyzed by environmental scanning electron microscopy. The char was also examined by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. XRD confirmed the inertness of zirconium silicate with intumescent ingredients at high temperatures. TGA showed an increase in the weight residue of char at high temperature. The incorporation of zirconium silicate into intumescent coating forms a thermally stable char with better substrate adhesion. EDS analysis confirmed an increase in the antioxidation property of the char, and the fire test also confirmed an increase in char strength of coatings by the incorporation of zirconium silicate.

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Intumescent fire retardant


Thermogravimetric analysis


Environmental scanning electron microscopy


X-ray diffraction


Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy


Zirconium silicate


Ammonium polyphosphate






Ethylene vinyl acetate copolymer


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Correspondence to Ravindra G. Puri.

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Puri, R.G., Khanna, A.S. Influence of heat-stable filler on the thermal shielding performance of water-based intumescent fire-resistive coating for structural steel applications. J Coat Technol Res 14, 323–331 (2017).

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  • Intumescent coatings
  • Passive fireproofing
  • Fire safety
  • Zirconium silicate