Development of Flame-retardant Polymer

Masayuki Okoshi Design for Environment Group,
Technology Development Group
Masato Mikami same as above
Kazuya Yamanoi same as above

For enclosure covers of multifunction machines and printers used in offices, materials that possess high flame retardancy are applied to avoid a fire. On the other hand, several kinds of flame-retardants are restricted by rules and regulations such as Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) and Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS). Therefore, in response to increased demand for an environmentally safe, mechanically strong resin, which could be used in multifunction machines, we embarked on the development of a novel flame-retardant resin that includes neither halogens nor phosphates. In general, flame-retardants are categorized into three types by their flame-retarding mechanisms: radical trapping, char forming, and endothermic dilution. We observed the properties of each type, and the result showed that non-halogen, non-phosphorous types, which are believed to be safer for environment, have less effect retarding fire than the halogen or phosphorus types. Thus, we adopted combinations of relatively effective non-halogen and non-phosphorous flame-retardants with other types, and obtained a combination that displayed high performance by adding only a small amount of these developing flame-retardants, and are now investigating its potential applications.

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