Fire Properties: Not Too Hot to Handle

Since 2005, IGB designed tools handle the laws and regulations regarding fire properties for aircraft interior materials.

Current design processes and increased use in composite and/or exotic non-metallic materials have made the substantiation of fire properties even more time-consuming. A fire substantiation report encompasses a large amount of material data.

To add fuel to the fire, the certification departments need to weigh-in the various factors, such as the material usage (such as location, size and material combination), aircraft manufacturer and certification requirements based on regulations that can be unclear.

Since 2011 the FAA, EASA, Boeing and Airbus have recognized this problem and have been collaborating to clarify these regulations. However clarification does not mean simplification. Take for example Boeing’s “small parts” requirements (D6-49936, section 4.1.8.2), which may lead to hundred of personnel hours if bills of materials (BOMs) must be manually extrapolated and analyzed for compliance.

Understanding the potential impact that these requirements would have on work flows, IGB pioneered a unique system to ensure the quality and accuracy of the fire properties substantiation.

This in-house software program generates fire properties test plans with a high degree of automation from one central database. It allows us to track the design changes to ensure the accuracy and quality of the fire properties test plan.

A Deeper Look

Below is an impression of how the system works.

Figure 1-2 Specimen test and possible comparison criteria definition

Figure 1-3 Program test options selection

Figure 1-4 Required test summary table

Figure 1-1 Specimen configuration definition

The benefits are fully automated document generation, maximizing the use of available data minimizing unnecessary costly tests and reducing lead times.

Database Input:

  • BOM data with part numbers and material (excel) and 3D product configuration (STEP file)
  • Specimen configuration build-up from project material

Automated Document Output:

  • Materials listing
  • Material usage criterion, automated Small Part selection/validation, including latest 12” separation requirements
  • Specimen Configuration
  • Specimen location on unit
  • Substantiation summary
  • Test plan summary
  • Specimen test sheets

Furthermore, due to our reputation for efficiency and thoroughness, IGB receives requests from our clients to manage their Fire Properties test results. These data can be referred to in future projects.

IGB invests in the continuous improvement of automation and its processes so that new regulations can be efficiently integrated in our standard practices.

As veterans in this field, IGB has been the go-to partner for certification departments who have required a little “fire-fighting” when it comes to fire properties.

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