Flame spread measurements on wood products using the ASTM E 1321 LIFT apparatus and a reduced scale adaptation of the cone calorimeter
Flame spread experiments were conducted in an ASTM E 1321 Lateral ignition and Flame Transport (LIFT) apparatus and a Reduced scale Ignition and Flame spread Test (RIFT) adaptation of the cone calorimeter. Wood based products were tested and a flame spread model was applied to the results to obtain the flame spread parameter and the minimum heat flux required for flame spread. The materials used were plywood, medium density fibreboard, hardboard, two particle board products, Melamine (Melteca) covered products with two types of wood substrate along with New Zealand grown Rimu, Beech, Macrocarpa and Radiata Pine. The RIFT gave comparable results to the LIFT for several of the materials investigated. There appeared to be an effective limit on suitable materials that can be successfully tested in the RIFT to those that have a minimum flux for flame spread of less than 7 kW/m2. This limitation was due to the rapid decay of the heat flux profile along the sample and the lower resolution dictated by the smaller size of the RIFT apparatus. It was found that the limit on the minimum heat flux for flame spread was approximately equivalent to a minimum ignition flux of 18 kW/m2.