Advertisement

PVC Cable Fire Toxicity Using the Cone Calorimeter

  • Wadie A. Al-Sayegh
  • Omar Aljumaiah
  • Gordon Edward AndrewsEmail author
  • Herodotos N. Phylaktou
Conference paper

Abstract

Electrical cables with PVC sheaths were investigated for their ignition characteristics, heat release and toxic yields using the cone calorimeter. 40 KW/m2 was required to get a significant heat release for PVC. A heated Temet Gasmet FTIR was used for the toxic gas analysis. Gas samples were taken from the cone calorimeter-diluted exhaust duct and transferred to the FTIR using a 190 °C heated sample line, heated pump and filter and a second 190 °C heated sample line between the pump and the FTIR. The FTIR measurement zone was also heated at 190 °C so that no loss of HCl and other condensable gases occurred. This heated sample system enabled the theoretical HCl yield, based on the chlorine content of PVC, to be measured. This indicated that there were no other significant chlorine products in the well-ventilated fires. A peak yield of 0.45 for HCl was found. There were significant yields of the irritant gas acrolein and formaldehyde, and acrolein was the most important toxic gas. The PVC sample and the char that remained after the test were analysed using TGA, and the results showed that only 41.6 % of the chlorine in the sample was lost as HCl in the cone calorimeter test, the rest remained in the char.

Keywords

PVC cable fires Toxic gases HCl Acrolein Cone calorimeter 

Notes

Acknowledgement

We would like to thank ABB and Tyco Electronics for the donation of production electrical cables for this work and John Staggs for arranging this link. We would like to thank the UK EPSRC for the LANTERN JIF award that provided the FTIR and associated hot gas handling equipment that was used in this work. Wadie A. Al-Sayegh would like to thank Saudi Aramco for a scholarship under which this research project was undertaken.

References

  1. 1.
    HMSO (2012) UK fire statisticsGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Persson B, Simonson M (1998) Fire emissions into the atmosphere. Fire Technol 34:3CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Andersson P, Simonson M, Stripple H (2003) Fire safety of up holstered furniture, SP Swedish National Testing and Research Institute SP Report 2003, p 22Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Sundstrom B (2006) Flammability tests for cables. In: Apte VB (ed) Flam mability testing of materials used in construction, transport and mining. Woodhead Publishing Ltd., pp 187–199. http://store.elsevier.com/product.jsp?isbn=9781855739352&pagename=search
  5. 5.
    Hirschler MM (1994) Comparison of large and small-scale heat release tests with electrical cables. Fires Mater 18(2):61–76CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Hirschler MM (2001) Can the cone calorimeter be used to predict full scale heat and smoke release cable tray results from a full scale test protocol. In: Proc. Interflam, 2001, Interscience Communications, LondonGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Lukas C (1995) Measurement of heat flux in the cone calorimeter. Fire Mater 19:97–98CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Van Hess P, Axelsson J, Grayson SJ, Green AM, Breulet H, Vercellotti U (2000) Assessing the fire performance of electric cables (FIPEC). Flame Retardants 2000, Interscience Communications, pp 239–255Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Babrauskas V, Harris RH, Braun E, Levin B, Paabo M, Gann RG (1991) The role of bench scale test data in as sessing real-scale fire toxicity, NIST Technical Note 1284Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Bowes PC (1974) Smoke and toxicity hazards of plastics in fires. Ann Occup Hyg 17:143–157CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Blomqvist P (2005) Emissions from fires: consequences for human safety and the environment, PhD thesis, University of LundGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Hull TR, Lebek K, Paul KT (2008) Comparison of toxic product yields of burning cables in bench and large-scale experiments. Fire Saf J 43:140–150CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Hull TR, Lebek K, Paul KT (2005) Correlation of toxic product yields from tube furnace tests and large scale tests. Fire Saf Sci 8:1059–1070CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Purser DA (2002) Toxic assessment of combustion products. In: Dinenno PJ (ed) SFPE handbook of fire protection engineering, 2/83-2/171. http://www.globalspec.com/reference/76871/203279/SFPE-Handbook-of-Fire-Protection-Engineering-Third-Edition
  15. 15.
    Andrews GE, Daham B, Mmolawa MD, Boulter S, Mitchell J, Burrell G, Gunamusa W, Phylaktou HN (2005) Toxic emissions from air starved fires. Fire Saf Sci 8:1035–1046CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Andrews GE, Li H, Hunt A, Hughes D, Bond S, Tucker P, Akram S, Phylaktou HN (2007) Toxic gases in simulated aircraft interior fires using FTIR analysis. In: Proc. fifth international conference on fire and explosion hazards, University of Edinburgh, pp 846–855Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Andrews GE*, Boulter S, Burell G, Cox M, Daham B, Li H, Phylaktou HN (2007) Toxic gas measurements using FTIR for combustion of COH materials in air starved enclosed fires, 2007. In: Proc. of the European Combustion Institute Meeting, Chania, CreteGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Aljumaiah O, Andrews GE, Alqahtani AM, Husain BF, Singh P, Phylaktou HN (2010) Air starved acrylic curtain fire toxic gases using and FTIR. In: Bradley D, Makviladze G, Molkov V (eds) Proc. sixth international seminar on fire and explosion hazards (FEH6). University of Leeds, UK, pp 804–816. Published by Research Publishing, ISBN-13:978-981-08-7724–8. doi: 10.3850/978-981-08-7724-8_11-08
  19. 19.
    Aljumaiah O, Alshammari S, Burell G, Cox M, Andrews GE, Phylaktou HN (2010) Toxic emissions from folded cotton towels in a low ventilation compartment. 2010. In: Bradley D, Makviladze G, Molkov V (eds) Proc. sixth international seminar on fire and explosion hazards (FEH6), pp 792–803. University of Leeds, UK, pp 804–816. Published by Research Publishing, ISBN-13:978-981-08-7724-8. doi: 10.3850/978-981-08-7724-8_11-07
  20. 20.
    Aljumaiah O, Andrews GE, Mustafa BG, Al-Qattan H, Shah V, Phylaktou HN (2011) Air starved wood crib compartment fire heat release and toxic gas yields. Fire Saf Sci 10:1283–1278CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Daham BK, Andrews GE, Li H, Ballesteros R, Bell MC, Tate JE, Ropkins K (2005) Application of a portable FTIR for measuring on-road emissions, 20 pp. SAE Paper 2005-01-0676. In: Emissions measurement and testing 2005. SAE SP-1941, pp 171–192, ISBN 0-7680-1586-3Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Fire Science and Technology Inc. (n.d.) Toxicity of fire gases. http://www.acne.com/-vyto/toxicity.html
  23. 23.
    Health and Safety Executive (2002) Control of substances hazardous to health regulations, HSE booksGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Stec AA, Hull TR (eds) (2010) Fire toxicity. Woodhead Publishing Ltd, CambridgeGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Singapore 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wadie A. Al-Sayegh
    • 1
  • Omar Aljumaiah
    • 1
  • Gordon Edward Andrews
    • 1
    Email author
  • Herodotos N. Phylaktou
    • 1
  1. 1.Energy Research InstituteUniversity of LeedsLeedsUK

Personalised recommendations