Flammability of natural plant and animal fibers: a heat release survey

Galaska, Mary L., Horrocks, Richard ORCID: 0000-0003-1431-058X and Morgan, Alexander B. (2016) Flammability of natural plant and animal fibers: a heat release survey. Fire and Materials, 41 (3). pp. 275-288. ISSN 0308-0501

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Official URL: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10991018


With increased interest in sustainable materials for use in building materials and clothing, there is a renewal in the use of natural fibers (plant or animal-based) vs. synthetic fibers in a variety of applications. However, there is not as much information available on the flammability of these natural fibers especially when they are used in products where purification techniques used in conventional textile processing are not required. The literature to date suggests that all of the fibers can be grouped into two categories: cellulosic and animal, with the assumption that regardless of original species, the flammability is similar for fibers within each category. In this report, we have conducted a survey via micro combustion calorimetry to determine if all cellulose-based and all protein based fibers are the same from a heat release perspective. Our findings show that this is not the case, and there are notable differences in fiber types within each genus. Further, how the natural fiber has been treated prior to use can have some dramatic effects on heat release caused by residual impurity content. The results in this paper suggest there is more to be learned about these natural fiber types in regards to their inherent flammability.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Micro combustion calorimetry, animal fibers, plant fibers, heat release
Subjects: T Technology > T Technology (General)
Divisions: University of Bolton Research Centres > Institute for Materials Research and Innovation
Depositing User: Sarah Taylor
Date Deposited: 19 Mar 2018 09:12
Last Modified: 19 Mar 2018 09:12
Identification Number: 10.1002/fam.2386
URI: http://ubir.bolton.ac.uk/id/eprint/1454

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