The field of flame retardancy has witnessed in the last decade a vigorous development of new technologies and new products and materials to meet the challenge of the needs of new industries-such as the computer, electronics and telecommunication industries. An additional challenge was presented by the growing awareness of environmental issues and by the stiffening demands of consumer safety, which have been put forward by governments and public agencies. It became clear that new flame-retardant systems are needed to meet the new product and market demands. New regulations, standards and testing methods, as well as instruments, are essential for assessing and defining these needs. Such new regulations are indeed being introduced, particularly in recent years, in the European community. These new regulations present new challenges to the flame-retardancy industry. It is not surprising therefore; that the number of scientists and technologists engaged in this field, as well as the number of universities and companies dealing in flame retardancy, is steadily growing.
Every manufacturer needs to be aware of new regulations and the products and processes that will meet them. New materials and formulations are rapidly changing the economic equation. Companies that adopt the latest technology will have the edge in providing their customers with the best balance of properties at the lowest possible price.
This anthology, based on the monthly newsletter Flame Retardancy News, keeps the reader up-to-date on fire codes and the technology that one needs to make the products meet these ever more stringent standards. It reviews the latest news from the previous year on: