Non-halogenated flame retardants debut for low-VOC PUR auto interior foam

FRX Polymers Inc. has debuted Nofia polymeric halogen-free phosphonate flame retardants for use in the production of low volatile organic compound (VOC) polyurethane (PUR) foam for automotive interior applications. These low-VOC PUR flexible foam products reportedly deliver significant improvements in vehicle interior air quality.

Polymeric halogen-free phosphonate flame retardants are for use in the production of low VOC PUR foam for automotive interior applications.

VOCs are inherently present in newly produced components for automotive interiors. Polyurethane foam with small molecule flame retardants or other volatile additives can increase VOC levels, according to FRX Polymers. These volatile components vaporize into the interior, creating odor and fogging.

The growth of the automotive industry in Asia is driving the effort to improve interior air quality. The Chinese government is placing strict regulations on the level of VOCs, according to FRX Polymers. Effective January 2019, the most stringent mandatory Chinese national standard, “Air quality assessment of passenger car” (GB/T 27630-201X), will reduce the maximum VOC limits for eight harmful substances by 10–45%, and returning to its 2011 version.

Nofia phosphonate polymeric halogen-free FRs are a replacement for volatile oligomeric and smaller molecular weight FR additives currently used in PUR flexible foam products for automotive interiors and exteriors, eliminating unpleasant odors in vehicles while meeting other critical structural requirements.

Due to their polymeric structure and reactivity with isocyanates which results in incorporation into the backbone of PUR products, Nofia FRs enable these foam products to meet various automotive fire safety standards as well as new total VOC and fogging standards from global car producers and regional in-vehicle air quality regulations. These include the new Chinese mandatory standard GB/T 27630-201X.

“Nofia flame retardants are a unique FR solution for auto interior parts made of polyurethane foams,” said Ken Wei, sales manager for FRX Polymers China. “Our team is working with various foam producers in Asia to meet new VOC regulations and our flame-retardant products stand out from the competition, becoming the ‘go to’ FR solution for this market.”

Nofia FRs can be added to the manufacturing process in either powder form or as a liquid polyol solution, which significantly improves process efficiency and provides a sustainable solution.

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