burning building with smoke


The New FT-IR OMEGA 5 Toxicity Test System  The Advanced Gas Analyzer for the TCC 918 Cone Calorimeter

The Cone Calorimeter is one of the most important measuring instruments in fire testing. The TCC 918 by NETZSCH TAURUS Instruments is a Cone Calorimeter designed to investigate the fire behavior of materials under controlled conditions. The instrument uses the oxygen-consumption calorimetry method to measure the heat release during combustion. Thanks to its accuracy, versatility and simplicity, the measurement principle is currently considered the most advanced method for determining the fire and smoke behavior of building materials in accordance with ISO 5660-1 and ASTM E1354.

The TCC 918 now offers additional functionality by coupling with Bruker's OMEGA 5 FT-IR gas analyzer. As a result, it is now possible to identify and quantify toxic gases.

TCC 918 Cone Calorimeter
Figure: The TCC 918 Cone Calorimeter from NETZSCH TAURUS Instruments

What Is the TCC 918 used for?

The Cone Calorimeter by NETZSCH TAURUS Instruments is an attractive measuring instrument, especially in the early stage of product development. For example, the TCC 918 can be used to determine various flammability parameters that can be used to predict the fire behavior:

  • Ignition time
  • Mass-loss rate
  • Heat release rate
  • Smoke generation
  • Effective heat of combustion

With the help of these results, the fire behavior of building materials can be optimized to prevent the development of fires in buildings or to reduce the formation of flames and smoke.

The Structure of the Cone Calorimeter

To determine the material parameters, a combustion chamber can be opened from three sides. Inside the chamber, there is a cone-shaped electric heater, which irradiates the sample uniformly from above. An exhaust system, consisting of an exhaust hood, exhaust pipe and speed-controlled process fan, captures all flue gases, which are transferred via sampling probes to the robust Siemens ULTRAMAT/OXYMAT 6E gas analyzer.

Also on the measuring tube are the optical measuring section and additional thermocouples to determine the flue gas temperature. In addition, the differential pressure is measured to determine and control the necessary volume flow. The analysis of oxygen as well as carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide gases allows for the determination of the heat release rate during combustion.

The FT-IR OMEGA 5 System completes Gas Analysis

For further analysis of the fuel gases, the TCC 918 can be coupled with the OMEGA 5 system by Bruker. The OMEGA 5 is a compact FT-IR gas analyzer. It is equipped with a 5m multi-reflectance gas cell suitable for the measurement of industrial gases. The OMEGA 5 system is designed for automatic, high-precision, real-time monitoring of gas concentrations.

Bruker OMEGA 5 FT-IR Toxicity System
Figure: OMEGA 5 FT-IR Toxicity System

The FT-IR analyzer can, for example, detect and quantify toxic gases with high sensitivity. Thanks to the large number of reference spectra of 300 different gas compounds contained in the library of the OPUS GA software, analysis and evaluation are greatly facilitated.

Operation of the Cone Calorimeter

The TCC 918 is controlled via two touch screen displays. The Single Board Computer (SBC) is easy to use and guides the user through the complete test procedure. The big advantage is that an interface between the OPUS GA software of the OMEGA 5 gas analyzer and the TCC software has already been implemented. This transfers all data collected to the TCC 918 and allows the user to view all information directly on one screen.

Figure: TCC 918 Touchscreen and Burning Chamber
Figure: TCC 918 Touchscreen and Burning Chamber

The TCC 918 Cone Calorimeter and the FT-IR OMEGA 5 System in Fire Testing

In summary, the TCC 918 Cone Calorimeter by NETZSCH TAURUS Instruments is an indispensable tool in fire testing and product development. Using the advanced method of oxygen consumption calorimetry, the instrument provides comprehensive and accurate information on the fire behavior of materials. It measures various parameters that are used to predict the real fire behavior, thus helping optimize the fire safety of building materials. The TCC 918 is equipped with high-quality components, including a robust gas analyzer and a complex exhaust system.

Integration with Bruker's FT-IR OMEGA 5 system expands the analytical capabilities of the TCC 918 by providing highly accurate, real-time monitoring of the gas concentration and identification of a wide range of gas compounds. This allows for even more in-depth analysis of combustion products and contributes to a comprehensive fire safety assessment. Easy operation through two touch-screen displays and a user-friendly software, which has already implemented an interface between the OPUS GA software of the OMEGA 5 gas analyzer and the TCC software, makes the TCC 918 an indispensable tool in fire safety research and testing.

This blog article is based on NETZSCH TAURUS Instruments GmbH's contribution to the NETZSCH Future Days 2023. Here you can watch the video:

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