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Executive Summary.

pdf icon Executive Summary. (196 K)
Grosshandler, W. L.; Gann, R. G.; Pitts, W. M.

NIST SP 861; April 1994.

Evaluation of Alternative In-Flight Fire Suppressants for Full-Scale Testing in Simulated Aircraft Engine Nacelles and Dry Bays., Grosshandler, W. L.; Gann, R. G.; Pitts, W. M., Editor(s)(s), iii-v pp, 1994.

Available from:

Government Printing Office
Order number: SN003-003-03268-9


halons; aircraft engines; nacelle fires; evaluation; large scale fire tests; simulation; in-flight fires; halon 1301; commercial aircraft; military aircraft; fire extinguishing agents; boiling point


Bromotrifluoromethane (halon 1301 or CF3Br) has been the fire-fighting agent of choice for decades to protect inaccessible spaces aboard aircraft in flight because of its inherent ability to inhibit combustion while possessing a high liquid density and stability, and low boiling point, electrical conductivity, corrosiveness, toxicity and cost. The bromine atom, which is credited with giving halon international agreement, commercial production of CF3Br has ceased in order to protect the stratospheric ozone layer. No alternative agents are available which have all the positive characteristics of halon 1301. Hence, there is an urgency to finding a replacement chemical in order to maintain aircraft safety. The affected government agencies and industries have a large stake in minimizing the impact of making a transition because of the potentially huge costs involved and military readiness implications.