A new test facility is under preparation. This will be followed by a Round Robin series, organised by Egolf, relating to reaction to fire tests for building products – Determination of a building product’s propensity to undergo continuous smouldering according to EN 16733. This is a new test method developed in the last five years by various European fire labs, in cooperation with European industry.

This European Standard specifies a test method to determine the propensity (ability) of a building product to smoulder continuously when exposed to an open flame under the influence of natural convective airflow. It is intended for all building products classified according to EN 13501-1. Details of how the product is mounted and fixed for this test are given in the relevant product standards. The field of application of the test results is defined in the product standards.

Brief history
With Germany as the main instigator, the European Commission initiated the Mandate M/385 to develop a standard for the smouldering of construction products. The European Technical Committee for standardisation CEN/TC 127 “Fire Safety in Buildings” was requested to develop this test method to determine possible glowing combustion behaviour in building products. In defining the test method, the Nordic NT Fire 002 and Austrian Önorm B 3800 (Schlyter test) standards were considered. The EN 16733 standard has been available since 2016.

In addition to the test method, a classification system of the continuous smouldering of building products is planned for inclusion as part of the EN 13501-1.

Test situation
A test specimen mounted vertically in a frame is exposed to a gas burner flame. Smouldering is detected by measuring temperatures using thermocouples installed at defined distances within the vertical test specimen and by observation of sustained flaming following reignition.

Egolf has organized a Round Robin test series to inventory the experience, accuracy and reproducibility with the new test method. The specimen is expected to be delivered at the end of March. The tests start at the beginning of April.

The reaction to fire facility according to EN ISO 1716
Determination of the gross heat of combustion (calorific value) will be available soon. The facility is being repaired in France and will be transported to Efectis Nederland.
The test method is part of the EN 13501-1, to realise an A2 classification in combination with the Single Burning Item test series or an A1 classification in combination with the non-combustibility test series.

Contact: Arjo Lock – arjo.lock@efectis.com