ISO 10840:2003 covers the following aspects of fire testing:
- selection of appropriate test(s);
- listing of reaction-to-fire characteristics which the test(s) can measure;
- assessment of the test(s) for their suitability for material characterization, quality control, pre-selection and/or end-product testing;
- problems that can arise when plastics specimens are tested in standard fire tests.
Particular attention is given to the provision of guidance for inexperienced users who may need to assess the fire performance of materials or products made of, or incorporating, plastics. This International Standard also provides answers to frequently asked questions concerning standard fire tests; these cover factors such as cost, test duration, complexity, required operator skills, quality of the data produced, relevance to fire hazard assessment as well as test repeatability and reproducibility.
The main focus in this International Standard is on reaction-to-fire testing. Fire-resistance testing has also been considered, however, in order to take account of the widespread use of advanced polymer composites and related materials with superior thermo-mechanical stability which may be used in applications where there is a demand for some degree of fire resistance. Further development of such plastics composites and related products will predictably increase the demand for fire-resistance testing.
The scope of this International Standard does not include the development or design of fire tests for plastics.