Overview of Flammability Test for the International Space Station Program; Inherent Problems and Potential Improvements

DOI:10.15011/jasma.32.320406
Int. J. Microgravity Sci. Appl. 2015p320406
Author
A. HOSOGAI and Y. NAKAMURA
Organization
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Toyohashi University of Technology
Abstract
This paper summarizes the potential problems for currently-applied safety verification test at JAXA and NASA; NASA-STD-6001B. There are two issues to be become serious problems; one is based on the fact that the test is not capable to evaluate the material flammability under various gravity environment, and the other is based on the fact that the igniter used in the test is not capable to heat up the test specimen with high thermal inertia. NASA-STD-6001/TEST1/TEST4 is based on the upward flame propagation testing so that "worst-case” must be identical to “most flammable under normal gravity”. However, it turned out that this definition is not always right; it has been reported that the flammability limit becomes lower under microgravity environment because the sufficient heat is not washed away via buoyancy-induced flow. Therefore, gravity effect must be counted to the test in order to apply not only ISS but also universal space environment. Moreover, the chemical igniter used in NASA-STD-6001B can generate certain limiting heat so that it could be insufficient to ignite the test specimen. In FLARE project led by JAXA would propose other safety verification concept which is improved these potential problem and to be applicable to the wide range of future space mission.
Keyword(s)
NASA-STD-6001B, Flammability test, Upward Flame Propagation, Electrical Wire Insulation Flammability, Human space flight program, FLARE project
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Received 15 Sept. 2015, accepted 21 Oct. 2015, published 31 Oct. 2015

© The Japan Society of Microgravity Applicaiton

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