It’s useful to think of a flame retardant as a noun, and fire resistance as an adjective For Drew Child, Milliken Textile Division’s program and technology director, however, it is particularly important to emphasise that the company’s protective fabrics – for workwear and uniforms, as well as for firefighters and military warfighters – are fire resistant, as opposed to being just flame retardant. “Basically, it’s useful to think of a flame retardant as a noun, and fire resistance as an adjective,” he explains. “A flame retardant is a chemical additive designed to interrupt combustion, whereas fire resistance in textiles refers to the fabric’s inherent propensity not to burn. As such, fire resistance is an intrinsic property of the material. “When a material is described as flame resistant, it’s important to know what standard its performance meets, because there are numerous standards that cover levels of flame resistance, and those required for bedding in hotels, for example, or seating in theatres, are much easier to meet than those required for protective apparel. Basically, the first group just needs to ensure bedding materials or seating burn slowly enough to allow guests in hotels or other public spaces to escape the building. This is not enough for fabrics intended to be worn for personal protection at any level.” In the USA, the NFPA701 standard covers many of the fabrics for public spaces such as hotel linen, bedspreads, upholstery and seating, etc., and cotton fabrics may not even need any treatment to meet its requirements, while polyester fabrics can meet it through the use of a suitable additive flame retardant. NFPA 2112 is the primary standard for fire resistance for workwear for those working in potentially hazardous environments, such as in the petrochemical industry and on oil rigs etc. For firefighters, the much tougher NFPA1971 must be met in the USA, and there are comparative standards within the European ISO system. “Several years ago, there were materials being used for reflective vests based on a flame retardant that was not appropriate to the standard required for protective apparel, so it’s vital to adhere to them,” Child stresses. “It’s a little confusing that the abbreviation ‘FR’ can refer both to fire resistance and flame retardants.” The fire (flame) resistant protective fabrics of Westex can be split into three different technology categories, all based on carefully selected blends of fibres in unique fabric constructions and the addition of patented finishing technologies. All three categories provide certified flame resistance for the life of the garment, so the selection of the proper technology is based on the application and other factors such as cost and comfort. Offering the highest level of durability are products containing high temperature fibres such as aramids. This category includes Westex Synergy and Synergy Pro for industrial workers, as well as ResQ for firefighters and the military. “Aramids like Nomex, Kevlar, Conex and Twaron don’t inherently burn, and it’s the same for inorganic fibres like glass and basalt,” Child explains. “As such, fabrics based on them are the most durable, but aramid fibres are also very expensive, and fabrics based on them tend to be harsher, so are not as comfortable. They are also not suited to providing Arc Flash protection.” Westex DH, based on modacrylic (modified acrylic) fibres, is certified for both the arc flash and flash fire protection. The woven fabric also provides breathability and optimised moisture management to keep the wearer cooler, drier and more comfortable, while retaining an excellent after-wash appearance, with a low propensity for pilling. “Westex DH provides more comfort, but garments need to be replaced a little sooner than with the aramid-based products, which is always the trade-off,” Child says.https://www.innovationintextiles.com/fibres-yarns-fabrics/two-meanings-for-fr-a-vital-distinction-for-milliken
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Border wall gets no new funds in Biden's budget The image by Андрей Бобровский is licensed under CC BY 3.0 In a $1.6 trillion discretionary funding request sent to the U.S. Senate's Committee on Appropriations on Friday, President Joe Biden's administration did not ask for border wall construction funds and proposed that unobligated, prior-year funding set aside for wall construction be canceled. The president will submit his full budget request for 2022 in the coming months. Even though the administration did not request money for border wall construction, the funding it proposed does include $1.2 billion for other types of border infrastructure like modernization of land ports of entry and new border security technology. The funding request seems to contradict media reports that the Biden administration might be planning to resume a program of wall construction. During the 2020 campaign, Biden said his administration would not "build another foot of wall," but the administration has not yet announced how it will proceed with wall contracts in progress . When fielding a question earlier this month about reports that Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas was considering filling "gaps" in the border wall, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said during a press briefing that federal agencies are continuing to review border wall contracts and will submit a plan to the president soon. "It is paused," she said. "There is some limited construction that has been funded and allocated for, but it is otherwise paused." Senate Republicans have pushed back against the Biden administration's halt to border wall construction and have asked the U.S. Government Accountability Office Comptroller Gene L. Dodaro for a legal opinion as to whether the move violated the Impoundment Control Act . At the core of their complaint is that the act prohibits the president from withholding funds obligated by Congress. Although former President Donald Trump diverted money from the Defense Department for wall construction under a national emergency declaration, Congress also appropriated an average of $1.4 billion per year for wall repair, replacement and construction from 2018 through 2021. The discretionary funding request also included other construction-related items such as: $11.2 billion for the Environmental Protection Agency, which includes $3.6 billion for water infrastructure improvements. $6.8 billion for the U..S. Army Corp of Engineers civil works program. $2 billion for federal building construction. $10.2 billion to the National Science Foundation, which includes funding for the construction of research facilities.https://www.constructiondive.com/news/border-wall-gets-no-new-funds-in-bidens-budget/598193/