AOC introduces fire retardant resin for mass transportation

Firepel K120 uses an intumescent technology that meets fire performance requirements and does not require antimony or aluminium trihydrate (ATH), reports AOC. It is ideal for in mass transportation applications.

Parts using K120 have a potential weight savings of up to 30% compared to standard composites using antimony or ATH, the company says.

“When developing Firepel K120, we wanted to utilise halogen-free technologies to create the highest fire-retardant and low-smoke characteristics possible,” says Fletcher Lindberg, Business Manger, Open-Mold Reinforced Resins, AOC.

“And because the resin’s excellent performance is achieved without ATH, Firepel K120 has a much lower specific gravity than ATH-filled composites, which makes it easier to process than traditional systems."

"As an added benefit, tensile properties are higher with K120,” he adds.

Firepel K120 is engineered for the hand lay-up and spray-up composite manufacturing processes.

Low fire, smoke and toxicity

AOC claims that Firepel K120 unsaturated polyester resin greatly exceeds the requirements of mass transportation applications in North America and demonstrates low flame spread, low smoke and excellent smoke toxicity data when tested according to:

  • ASTM E162, Standard Test Method for Surface Flammability of Materials Using a Radiant Heat Energy Source;
  • ASTM E662, Standard Test Method for Specific Optical Density of Smoke Generated by Solid Materials; and
  • SMP 800-C, Toxic Gas Generation.

  Trains, buses and vans

Initial applications for Firepel K120 are in fibre reinforced polymer (FRP) composite parts for use in railcars, buses and vans. Typical candidate components include:

  • arc barriers;
  • cab fronts;
  • nose cones;
  • driver control desks;
  • interior wall panels;
  • exterior cladding;
  • seat shells and tables;
  • handles and head supports;
  • flooring and ceilings; and
  • ventilation ducting.