Types of fire retardant coatings can be defined in many ways and can usually be classified as follows:
From the base material it uses, it can be divided into organic type and inorganic type. The organic type fireproof coating is based on natural or synthetic organic resin and organic emulsion; the inorganic type fireproof coating is based on the inorganic adhesive. According to its fire protection form, it can be divided into non-intumescent and intumescent. According to its scope of use, it can be divided into steel structure fireproof coating, prestressed concrete floor fireproof coating, tunnel fireproof coating, etc. Usually, we divide it from the form of fire retardant coating, which can be divided into intumescent and non-intumescent fire retardant coatings.
When the non-intumescent fire retardant coating is exposed to fire, the coating basically does not change in volume, forming a glaze-like protective layer. It can act as a barrier to oxygen, so that oxygen cannot contact with the protected flammable substrate, thereby avoiding or reducing the combustion reaction. Since the non-intumescent fire retardant coating is generally thicker than the intumescent fire retardant coating, its consumption per unit area is large, the use cost is high, the decorative effect is poor, and its fireproof and heat insulation effect is not as good as that of the intumescent fire retardant coating. The research on fire retardant coatings for cables and cables generally takes the "intumescent" technical approach.
The intumescent fire retardant coating expands and foams when exposed to fire to form a foam layer. The foam layer not only isolates oxygen, but also has good thermal insulation properties because of its loose texture, which can delay the rate of heat transfer to the protected substrate. The process of coating expansion and foaming to generate a foam layer is an endothermic reaction due to the expansion of the volume, and also consumes a lot of heat, which is beneficial to reduce the temperature of the system, so its fireproof and heat insulation effect is remarkable. Many intumescent coatings typically provide economical flame retardancy times of up to 60 minutes. Technological progress in recent years has reduced the thickness of the coating to a considerable extent, and the expansion performance has also been improved, making it more competitive in the 90min market. There are also a few intumescent coatings that can achieve a flame retardant time of 120 minutes. Intumescent coatings have finish-like appearance properties and are stable at ambient temperature. This coating generally consists of the following coats: a primer with good bonding properties, an intumescent coating, and finally a protective decorative topcoat. Some suppliers do not recommend the use of protective outer layers, mainly because doing so reduces the effectiveness of intumescent coatings. Intumescent flame retardant coatings can be expensive. The thickness of the intumescent coating is related to the flame retardant efficiency and is very critical.
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