Introduction to the FMVSS 302 standard
Engineer must design cars to comply numerous standards. Since 1971, the FMVSS 302 has been the standard for any vehicles’ interior to ensure the safety of passengers and reduce fire risks.
In 1969 in the US, within 400 thousand fire vehicles, 25% of them declared to fire departments came from the vehicles’ interior. To address this major threat, the US government worked with the SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) to develop the standard FMVSS 302.
Based on previous recommendations, it gives to the industry a framework for further development interior compartments. The outcomes of the FMVSS 302’s prerequisites are lowering the burn rate of the materials, lowering the severity and the frequency of the burn injuries, and increase the evacuation time for the passengers. Since its introduction, the number of fire originated from the interior has dropped from 25% in 1969 to 15% in 2017.
To comply, a single test exists with the purpose to observe the horizontal burn rate of the interior materials. Practically unchanged since 1972 and applied first to the compartment, including the soft top for convertibles, it became a requirement of the seats and other upholsteries in 1981.
How does the FMVSS 302 protocol operate?
This protocol evaluates the propagation of fire on the sample.
Set horizontally in a small chamber, a 4×14 inches / 10,16×35,56 cm (up to 13mm thick) sample of materials is exposed at its edge to the flame of the Bunsen burner (A) for 15 seconds. Then the propagation speed is measured to calculate the burn rate of the material (B). To be compliant, it needs to stay under 102 mm/minute.
Note: The equivalent of the FMVSS 302 among the ISO standards is the ISO 3795:1989.
WHO ARE WE ?
OTEGO manufactures fabrics and seam sealing tapes for automotive and multiple other purposes. We provide solutions that complies FMVSS 302 certifications and are usable by vehicles manufacturers for their interiors and convertible soft tops.
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