Review of the Literature on the Gaseous Products and Toxicity Generated From the Pyrolysis and Combustion of Rigid Polyurethane Foams.
Review of the Literature on the Gaseous Products and
Toxicity Generated From the Pyrolysis and Combustion of
Rigid Polyurethane Foams.
Paabo, M.; Levin, B. C.
NBSIR 85-3224; 113 p. December 1985.
Fire and Materials, Vol. 11, No. 1, 1-29, March 1987.
Sponsor:Consumer Product Safety Commission, Bethesda, MD
Available from: National Technical Information Service
Order number: PB86-151941
carbon monoxide; combustion products; fire retardants;
hydrogen cyanides; literature reviews; polyurethane
foams; rigid foams; thermal decomposition; toxicity;
The literature on rigid polyurethane foam has been
reviewed with an emphasis on the gaseous products
generated under various thermal decomposition conditions
and the toxicity of those products. This review is
limited to publications in English through 1984. Carbon
monoxide (CO) and hydrogen cyanide (HCN) were the
predominant toxicants found among more than 100 other
gaseous products. The generation of CO and HCN was
found to increase with increasing combustion
temperatures. Many test methods were used to assess the
acute inhalation toxicity of combustion products from
various rigid polyurethane foams. Lethality,
incapacitation, physiological, and biochemical
parameters were employed as biological end points. In
general, the combustion products generated from rigid
polyurethane foam in the flaming mode appear to be more
toxic than those produced in the non-flaming mode. The
LC50 values for 30 minute exposures ranged from 10 to 17
mg/1 in the flaming mode and were greater than 34 mg/1
in the non-flaming mode. With the exception of one case
in which a reactive type phosphorus containing fire
retardant was used, the addition of fire retardants to
rigid polyurethane foams does not appear to generate
unusual toxic combustion products.