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Phosphorus Flame Retardants for Plastics: Techno Brief

Organic phosphorous compounds like phosphates and phosphonates compose the most used classes of flame retardants for thermoplastics and polyurethane foams, allowing them to meet FR standards like UL94. In this techno brief, you will find all about organic phosphorous flame retardants applications and criteria selection (end-market, viscosity, phosphorous content ...)

Why use Organic Phosphorus Flame Retardants?

Organic Phosphorus Flame RetardantsOne of the major classes of flame retardants for thermoplastics and polyurethane foams is that of organic phosphorus compounds (typically phosphates and phosphonates). These may also include phosphorus-halogen compounds and blends of phosphorous with halogenated flame retardants (typically brominated FR's).

Thermoplastic alloys such as PC/ABS and PPO/HIPS are often required to meet stringent FR standards such as UL94 V0. Phosphate based FR's work efficiently in these resins and give good physical properties and good UV stability

In many applications, rigid and flexible polyurethane foams are required to exhibit a degree of flammability resistance in order to pass specific flammability tests in any given country. Phosphorus based flame retardants, both chlorinated (chlorophosphates) and non-halogenated are extensively used in these applications and are considered an ideal choice, giving a good balance of process ability, flame retardancy and physical properties. In some instances Phosphorous bromine blends are used particularly where low scorch is required.

Depending on the final application, its key requirements and the flammability standards they must meet, PUR foam producers have the flexibility to choose among reactive additive, halogenated and non-halogenated phosphorus based flame retardants. These options provide a versatile selection for addressing the market needs of:

  • Performance
  • Compatibility
  • Efficiency
  • Physical properties
  • Process ability
  • Cost

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