Fires and explosions were, and continue to be, among the greatest threats to the safety of personnel and the survivability of military aircraft both in peacetime and during combat operations. Production of halon 1301 (CF3Br), long the fire suppressant of choice, ceased as of January 1, 1994 due to its high ozone depleting potential (ODP). By 1997, the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) had identified the best available replacement for halon 1301 in aircraft, HFC-125 (C2H5F), but it requires two to three times the mass and storage volume and contributes to global warming. Meanwhile, new aircraft were in various stages of design, and the international community was questioning the necessity of maintaining the large reserves of halon 1301.
A new undertaking, the Next Generation Fire Suppression Technology Program (NGP), was created to identify, through research, fire suppression technologies with reduced compromises. Supported primarily by the DoD Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) as Project WP-1059, the NGP goal was to "Develop and demonstrate technology for economically feasible, environmentally acceptable and user-safe processes, techniques, and fluids that meet the operational requirements currently satisfied by halon 1301 systems in aircraft." The multiple demands on the new technologies were daunting.
In its decade of systematic research (1997-2006), the NGP revitalized the field of fire suppression science. This book tells the story of how the NGP came about, what research was performed, how it modernized the thinking in the field, and the technical findings that emerged related to fire suppression in aircraft. The enclosed CD compiles the collected publications from the program.
Final Report (NIST SP 1069)
Book Cover and Pre-Pages
Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: History of Fire Suppression in Aircraft
Chapter 3: Flame Suppression Chemistry
Chapter 4: Aerosol Properties
Chapter 5: Instrumentation for Bench- and Large-scale Test Fixtures
Chapter 6: Screening Tests for Candidate Fire Suppressants
Chapter 7: Search for New Fire Suppressant Chemicals
Chapter 8: Fluid Dispensing and Dispersion
Chapter 9: Powder Panel and Propellant Discharge Technologies
Chapter 10: Life Cycle Costing of Fire Suppression Systems
Chapter 11: Verification of Fire Suppression Principles
Chapter 12: Afterword
Appendix A: Acknowledgements
Appendix B: NGP Projects
Appendix C: NGP Publications