Flame Spread Measurements Of New Zealand Timber Using An Adaptation Of The Cone Calorimeter Apparatus
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
This report investigates the use of an adaptation of the Cone Calorimeter to measure opposed flow flame spread. Cone Calorimeters are typically used in a horizontal orientation for ignition testing, this report looks at using the Cone Calorimeter in a vertical orientation to test flame spread, and compare results to those from Lateral Ignition Flame Transport (LIFT) experiments. This work arises from the LIFT apparatus being bulky and cumbersome which makes it an undesirable apparatus to have in the laboratory. The adaptation of the Cone Calorimeter is to provide an alternative method of obtaining the same material data in fire conditions. This work has followed on from work which was started by Azhakesan et al (1998) at Fire SERT at the University of Ulster, by developing a small scale opposed flow flame spread apparatus. The Reduced scale Ignition and Flame spread Technique (RIFT) was the result of adapting the Cone Calorimeter. This research was conducted in the Chemical and Process Engineering department at the University of Newcastle, which had conducted some work in this field. This research used this technique to examine opposed flow flame spread over a number of species of New Zealand timber and timber products. The research lead to an application of a view factor developed from horizontal Cone Calorimeter tests by Wilson et al (2002). This was modified and applied to the vertical orientation of the Cone Calorimeter. The use of the view factor is to estimate the profile of the heat flux along the length of the sample. The results obtained indicated a correlational nature however modifications are required to confirm findings. The application of Quintiere’s model on opposed flow flame spread used in LIFT tests is applied to the RIFT test to obtain material properties. The results from the RIFT analysis have shown that the flame spread variables are comparable with those obtained from LIFT tests. Results at this stage are preliminarily, recommendations are suggested to substantiate current results.