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Pilot-Scale Fire-Endurance Tests of Fire-Barrier Panels and Panel/Blanket Combinations. Report of Test.

pdf icon Pilot-Scale Fire-Endurance Tests of Fire-Barrier Panels and Panel/Blanket Combinations. Report of Test. (39030 K)
Steckler, K. D.

FR 4008; Report of Test FR 4008; 158 p. August 20, 1996.

Available from:

ADDRESS INQUIRIES TO: Patrick Madden, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555.
Telephone: 301-415-2854


fire barriers; fire endurance tests; fire research; fire resistance tests; small scale fire tests; raceways


These tests were carried out at the request of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to obtain information on the fire endurance of three fire-barrier systems when tested as horizontal planar units in a pilot-scale furnace. These systems are or will be installed to protect cable trays and electrical raceways in one or more U.S. nuclear power plants. For reasons presented later in this report, pilot-scale fire-endurance testing is limited to assessing the thermal-transmission characteristics of fire barrier materials, often under non-conservative edge-loss conditions. Furthermore, since the tests in this current series were conducted on planar units (i.e., as "ceilings" forming the top of the furnace), exposed to the furnace on only one surface, the results cannot be used to assess the performance of test assemblies exposed to the furnace on more than one surface, which is a more severe exposure. For these reasons, the reader is cautioned against using the results from this test series to assess the potential fire performance of full-scale fire barriers. Indeed, the reduced-scale results of this test series are intended for first-cut screening purposes only. The tests were conducted in the pilot-scale fire-endurance furnace located at the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). A total of five tests were conducted: two tests involving semi-rigid fire-barrier boards and three tests involving "subliming" panels with wrapping-material upgrades. Procedures specified in American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) E 119-88 generally were followed except when restrictions imposed by the pilot-scale precluded strict adherence to the procedure or suggested the procedure be modified (e.g., number and placement of thermocouples). The test results are summarized in Table ES1 onpages 4 and 5. The primary results are: 1. Four test assemblies, H3-1, TJ1-1, TJ3-3, and TU3-1, met all ASTM E 119 temperature and flame passage criteria for the expected period of either 1 or 3 hours. Indeed, these systems exceeded their expected periods by 0.5 to 1.5 hours. 2. The remaining test assembly, H1-1, produced average unexposed-surface temperatures that reached the E-119 average-temperature criterion about 5 minutes prior to the expected 1-hour fire-endurance period. No flame passage or burnthrough occurred during the 1-hour test period.