Experimental Study of Suppressing PVC Fire with Water Mist using a Cone Calorimeter

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Effect of water mist on the small-scale solid fuel PVC (poly vinyl chloride) fire in a confined space has been studied experimentally using a cone calorimeter. In this study, the combustion characteristics of PVC, and the interaction between the water mists and the diffusion flame in a confined space with proper ventilation control are studied under various conditions in the cone calorimeter. The water mist is generated by a single pressure nozzle and the diffusion flame is produced from PVC samples, respectively. The Laser Doppler Velocimetry/Adaptive Phase Doppler Velocimetry LDV/APV system is employed to determine the water mist characteristics. The results of the test showed that the combustion of PVC is a two-step process, the water mist suppress the diffusion flame in a confined space via oxygen displacement, heat extraction, and heat radiant attenuation. Heat extraction (flame cooling and fuel surface cooling) plays a dominant role by suppressing the PVC fire when the water mists of enough volume flux are applied to the diffusion flame in a confined space. The higher the operational pressure, the easier the suppression.

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