Flame retardancy, an introduction by Masaru Kitano & BSEF
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Flame retardancy flame retardants bromine bsef

“Introduction to flame retardancy”: the book


People often get surprised by natural disasters such as earthquakes and thunders. A lot of these tragedies are unavoidable. Wildfire is an example of those uncontrollable catastrophes. But a lot of other fire causes like careless accidents with cigarettes, bonfires and gas stoves could be prevented by taking certain precautions. Just being more alert does not suffice to enlarge our safety. No matter how much you anticipate, machines may still fail and humans keep being receptive for errors. Fire alarms, extinguishers, sprinklers, evacuation routes and fire drills are important tools and aids in case of fire. But how can we avoid or delay fires and their tragic results? Flame retardancy science is the solution to minimize the social damage caused by fires. This science researches how non-combustible/flame-retardant materials save lives and properties.


Masaru kitano bsef bromine flame retardants flame retardancy

Professor Kitano and The International Bromine Council join forces

Fire clearly has an enormous impact on our society. That is why Masaru Kitano (Professor of the Shukutoku University in Japan) brought together his experiences, thoughts and views on fire safety and flame retardancy science. BSEF now translated Kitano’s original Japanese publication from October 2016 into English. The book “Introduction to flame retardancy – Protect your life and property from fire” (published in October 2017 by Osamu Odajima) is the beautiful result from this co-operation.


A history of innovations and developments in flame retardancy technology

The history of flame retardants traces back to a theatre fire in Paris in 1786, which led to the first fire safety research. During the following centuries, innovations in fire safety – mostly on fabrics and nylon fibres – arose: ammonium sulphate treatments, water-resistant coatings, combinations of antimony oxide and chlorinated paraffin and a variety of flame retardant polymers. Flame retardant technology progressed rapidly in the 70’s and 80’s. Brominated flame retardants started penetrating the market in the 1990s. Until now, further improvements to this exciting bromine-based technology are constantly being made.

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A book on fire safety solutions: who is it for, what is it about?

This book shows fascinating and innovative content, using both refreshing texts and clarifying graphics. Fire safety affects all of us. That is why this book is a recommendation for flame retardant manufacturers, dealers and users, researchers and experts, as well as the general public.

Both the risks of the chemicals in flame retardants and their benefits are analysed and discussed. The book looks for an answer for the following question: how can flame retardants meet our economic and social needs? A broad range of flame retardant related subjects are highlighted, such as the different types and applications, the flame retardancy mechanism, applications, effects, methods of evaluating performances and fire safety standards. There is also room for discussion concerning the risk trade-off analysis between use and non-use of flame retardants. How does the damage caused by fires relate to the possible impact of these fire solutions on human health and the environment? And which trends in development are currently being designed to minimize these impacts?

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Book design by Brig (link www.brig.be), for edito3 (www.edito3.be)


Brominated flame retardants make up the largest commercial use of bromine. Visit our website to read more about BSEF’s vision on bromine as a flame retardant. Read more in our article on the evolution of flame retardants towards brominated polymers. Or have a look at our blog on BSEF supporting the 2nd Asia-Oceania Symposium on Fire Safety Materials Science and Engineering.



What are your thoughts on the evolutions in flame retardants, and on our growing need of them due to modern life trends?

Do not hesitate to share this article, to give your opinion and to start the conversation.




Introduction to flame retardancy – Protect your life and property from fire, Masaru Kitano

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