ASTM E2257 - 13a

    Standard Test Method for Room Fire Test of Wall and Ceiling Materials and Assemblies

    Active Standard ASTM E2257 | Developed by Subcommittee: E05.21

    Book of Standards Volume: 04.07


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    ASTM E2257

    Significance and Use

    5.1 This fire test is applicable to a description of certain fire performance characteristics in appraising wall and ceiling materials, products, or systems under specified fire-exposure conditions in an enclosure. The test indicates the maximum extent of fire growth in a room, the rate of heat release, and if they occur, the time to flashover, and the time to flame extension beyond the doorway following flashover. It determines the extent to which the wall and ceiling materials or assemblies contribute to fire growth in a room and the potential for fire spread beyond the room, under the particular conditions simulated. It does not measure the contribution of the room contents. (See Appendix X1, Commentary.)

    Note 1Time to flashover is defined herein as either the time when the radiant flux onto the floor exceeds 20 kW/m2 or the average temperature of the upper hot gas layer reaches 600°C (1100°F) or flames exit the doorway or spontaneous ignition of a paper target on the floor occurs. The spontaneous ignition of a crumpled single sheet of newspaper placed on the floor 0.9 m (3 ft) out from the center of the rear wall provides a visual indication of flashover.

    5.1.1 The potential for the spread of fire to other objects in the room, remote from the ignition source, is evaluated by measurements of: (a) the total heat flux incident on the center of the floor, and (b) a characteristic upper level gas temperature in the room.

    5.1.2 The potential for the spread of fire to objects outside the room of origin is evaluated by the measurement of the rate of heat release of the fire.

    5.1.3 Measurements of the rate of production of carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and visible smoke are taken.

    5.1.4 The overall performance of the test specimen is visually documented by full-color photographic records. Video taping of the complete fire test is an acceptable alternative to the photographic record. Such records show when each area of the test specimen becomes involved in the fire.

    5.2 In this procedure, the specimens are subjected to a specific set of laboratory fire test exposure conditions. If different test conditions are substituted or the anticipated end-use conditions are changed, it is not known whether it is possible by use of this test to predict changes in the performance characteristics measured. Therefore, the results are strictly valid only for the fire test exposure conditions described in this procedure.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This is a fire-test-response standard.

    1.2 This test method is intended to evaluate, under specified fire-exposure conditions, the contribution to room fire growth provided by wall or ceiling materials and assemblies, or both. The method is not intended to evaluate the fire endurance of assemblies or fires originating in the wall assembly. The method provides a means to evaluate the effectiveness of thermal barriers in restricting the contribution of combustible materials in the wall assembly to fire growth in a room fire.

    1.3 This test method, simulating a fire in the corner of a 2420 by 3630 mm (8 by 12 ft) room containing a single open doorway, provides a means to evaluate the relative performance of specified wall and ceiling materials or assemblies when they are used together in the same relationship within an enclosure, and simulating the manner in which they will be used.

    1.4 This test method is intended to evaluate the contribution to fire growth provided by a surface product using a specified ignition source. It shall, however, be noted that the type, position and heat output of the ignition source will considerably influence fire growth. The thermal exposure conditions from the ignition source specified in this method will result in flashover during the 20 min duration for many common finish materials, in particular if specimens are mounted on the walls and the ceiling (standard configuration).

    1.5 This test method provides a means for evaluating wall and ceiling finish materials and assemblies, including panels, tiles, boards, sprayed or brushed coatings, etc. This test method is not intended to evaluate flooring materials or furnishings.

    1.6 This method shall be used in conjunction with Guide E603, which covers instrumentation and the general effect of various parameters, and Guide E2067, which deals with full-scale oxygen consumption calorimetry.

    1.7 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as the standard. The units given in parentheses are for information only.

    1.8 The text of this standard references notes and footnotes which provide explanatory information. These notes and footnotes (excluding those in figures) shall not be considered as requirements of the standard.

    1.9 This standard is used to measure and describe the response of materials, products, or assemblies to heat and flame under controlled conditions, but does not by itself incorporate all factors required for fire-hazard or fire-risk assessment of the materials, products, or assemblies under actual fire conditions.

    1.10 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

    1.11 Fire testing is inherently hazardous. Adequate safeguards for personnel and property shall be employed in conducting these tests.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    NFPA Standards

    NFPA265 Standard Method of Tests for Evaluating Room Fire Growth Contribution of Textile Wall Coverings Available from National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), 1 Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02269-9101.

    NFPA286 Standard Method of Tests for Evaluating Contribution of Wall and Ceiling Interior Finish to Room Fire Growth

    ASTM Standards

    E84 Test Method for Surface Burning Characteristics of Building Materials

    E136 Test Method for Behavior of Materials in a Vertical Tube Furnace at 750C

    E176 Terminology of Fire Standards

    E603 Guide for Room Fire Experiments

    E2067 Practice for Full-Scale Oxygen Consumption Calorimetry Fire Tests

    ISO Standards

    ISO13943 Fire Safety--Vocabulary

    ISO9705 Fire Tests--Reaction to Fire--Room Fire Test Available from International Organization for Standardization (ISO), 1 rue de Varemb, Case postale 56, CH-1211, Geneva 20, Switzerland.


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 13.220.50 (Fire-resistance of building materials and elements)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code 30161600(Ceiling materials)


    DOI: 10.1520/E2257

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