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Amazing insider of household appliance flame retardants

whether household appliance flame retardants are used or not is a big problem

a few days ago, when the General Administration of quality supervision, inspection and Quarantine of the people's Republic of China (AQSIQ) publicly solicited opinions on the "Regulations on the recall of defective household electrical appliances", Panasonic suddenly issued a recall announcement of defective refrigerators, saying that it would recall 365574 refrigerators of 29 models produced from March 2007 to March 2009 in Chinese Mainland

the reason for Panasonic's recall of large quantities of refrigerators is quite simple. It is precisely because the three-way solenoid valve used to control the refrigerant in the refrigerator uses red phosphorus flame retardant in the plastic wrapping the coil, which will cause the solenoid valve coil to be disconnected under high temperature and high humidity environment, resulting in abnormal conditions such as "cold storage room is not cold" or "cold storage room is too cold", and even unsafe conditions such as refrigerant leakage and control line combustion caused by the long-term use of the refrigerator under fault conditions

in particular, ordinary consumers do not know that many household appliances do not use flame retardants, or use less flame retardants, and may not use flame retardants correctly, which increases many hidden dangers and uncertainties for the use of household appliances

frequent home appliance failures: red phosphorus is toxic

professor zhouzhengmao, Secretary General of the China flame retardant society, gave an example of the application of flame retardants. Previously, some institutions took a European standard TV set and an American standard TV set respectively, and lit a candle next to the plastic shell of the two TV sets. The European Union TV set burned quickly, but the United States did not respond at all

according to media reports, the Panasonic refrigerator at the home of Ms. Zhou, who lives in Taihe community, Jiaojiang, Taizhou, Zhejiang, is among the models recalled this time. Before Panasonic service personnel came to the door to replace the new solenoid valve, it suddenly caught fire on the evening of August 31. Ms. Zhou revealed that the panel of the compressor had been burned through. Fortunately, someone at home found it in time, otherwise the consequences would be unimaginable

similar cases are not only found in Panasonic refrigerators. It is learned that in recent years, spontaneous combustion of color TV sets at home has occurred all over the country, which is also related to flame retardants. It is understood that although flame retardants will be added to the high-voltage coils and circuit boards of color TVs, some families' color TVs have "extended service" or "product technology" does not meet the standard. For many reasons, the performance of flame retardants has failed, or unstable changes have occurred in high temperature and high humidity environment, resulting in short circuit of lines, which leads to spontaneous combustion of internal parts of TVs. At the same time, because the plastic shell of the TV is not added with flame retardant, it will be ignited in case of open fire, which will cause the tragedy of spontaneous combustion of the TV and fire at home

Dr. Han Songqing of the China working group of the bromine science and Environment Forum told that at present, the spontaneous combustion rate of color TV sets in European countries is 100 times higher than that in the United States. Last year, the European Union passed the specification to add flame retardants to the main components of color TV sets

Zhou Zhengmao also revealed that the red phosphorus flame retardant will not only generate phosphate to corrode the circuit in the environment of high temperature and humidity, resulting in short circuit, flaming and even fire. More importantly, red phosphorus flame retardant is also very easy to react with oxygen in the air to produce phosphine, which is a kind of toxic gasification. Once the amount is generated, it will cause harm to human body

however, in Panasonic's recall announcement, only free maintenance and replacement are provided. The power department and residents complain constantly that there is no prompt or warning to consumers about the chemical reaction of the above red phosphorus flame retardant, and refrigerators are mainly used to load food in families

however, Dr. Han Songqing pointed out that neither red phosphorus flame retardants nor bromine flame retardants have toxicity or safety hazards. Red phosphorus is only produced in the production process. Due to process problems, a large amount of phosphine will be produced, which is toxic and does not meet environmental protection requirements. Many countries and enterprises do not advocate the use of red phosphorus flame retardant. Still in an important period of strategic opportunities for development

trex Co., Ltd. claims to be the world's largest company of high-performance materials and manufacturer of imitation wood decoration and railings flame retardant question: bromine can't be used

at present, Panasonic's treatment of problem refrigerators is to use bromine flame retardants instead of red phosphorus flame retardants in solenoid valves. However, Luo Daojun, director of the reliability analysis and research center of the Fifth Institute of electronics of the Ministry of industry and information technology, told that in recent years, many multinational enterprises such as HP, Dell, sharp, Microsoft and apple, under the pressure of some Greenpeace organizations in Europe, had banned the use of brominated flame retardants in the form prescribed by the company

it is understood that red phosphorus, aluminum hydroxide and magnesium hydroxide are halogen-free, while bromine flame retardants are halogen-containing. The biggest difference between the two is the combustion safety in case of fire after the application of flame retardants. Halogen free flame retardants are low toxic and can achieve smoke suppression effect. Halogen is not environmental friendly and will release a lot of smoke, which directly becomes the "soft rib" of the attack of green environmental protection organizations. Luo Daojun said, "at present, except for the RoHS directive prohibiting the use of decabromodiphenyl ether and other three bromine based flame retardants, no country has regulations explicitly prohibiting the use of bromine based flame retardants."

in recent years, many EU green environmental protection organizations have banned the use of brominated flame retardants. At the same time, they have also protested the use of some multinational consumer electronics giants such as Europe, America and Japan, and ranked the above enterprises. However, Zhou Zhengmao told that at present, electronic appliances and furniture and building materials are the two largest markets for the application of flame retardants. There are no unified standards and specifications for the selection and use of flame retardants. Different flame retardants are matched with different resin substrates (flame-retardant objects) due to different flame-retardant mechanisms. There are more than 70 kinds of bromine flame retardants alone, such as wire plastic sleeves, printed circuit boards, etc

it is understood that the annual market sales of flame retardants in the world are about more than US $3 billion, while Yabao, Israel chemical and kejuya belong to the three major flame retardant manufacturers in the world. Brominated flame retardants are still the main force in the field of flame retardants worldwide because of their low addition, good flame retardancy and low price

Zhou Zhengmao pointed out that although the debate on brominated flame retardants at home and abroad has never stopped, the advantage of brominated flame retardants is that the decomposition temperature is mostly 200 ℃ - 300 ℃, which matches the decomposition temperature of various polymers, so they can play a flame retardant role at the best time, in the gas phase and the condensed phase at the same time. Moreover, bromine is not necessarily toxic and environmentally friendly. Now bromine flame retardants such as tetrabromobisphenol A have passed the EU environmental and human health risk assessment

"last year, many people still remember the fire of the CCTV new building, because flame retardants were not used in the building exterior wall materials. Therefore, from the perspective of safety and environmental protection, using flame retardants is safer than not using them. At the same time, bromine flame retardants cannot be completely denied." Han Songqing said so

lack of standards: can enterprises reduce materials

however, we learned in the interview that the use of flame retardants will inevitably increase the production cost of enterprises, so in many electrical products, enterprises will save where they can, and rarely take the initiative to add flame retardants from the perspective of safety. Some insiders of enterprises revealed that since the United States and Europe have clear standards for adding flame retardants to electronic appliances, many domestic enterprises will add flame retardants to the materials of electrical products exported to the United States. Surprisingly, after entering the Chinese market, some multinational enterprises also cancelled the flame retardants originally added to their products

it is understood that since flame retardants are a kind of chemical raw materials and do not appear directly in household appliances in a certain part or shape, many consumers cannot judge whether there are flame retardants in many key components of household appliances. But in fact, there are many flame retardants in household appliances that people use everyday. In order to meet the requirements of fire prevention and safety, the printed circuit boards, wires and cables, high-voltage coils, power modules and other components in household appliances must use flame retardants, otherwise in the long-term high temperature and humid environment, these most critical electronic components will have natural and short circuits. The above situation will also be caused if less or improper flame retardants are used

for many years, since China has no unified national standards and relevant specifications for the use of flame retardants in household electronic appliances and other products, flame retardants have not been added to the plastic shells used in all domestic household appliances at present. Luo Daojun said frankly that only when the above products are subject to 3C certification (i.e. China Compulsory Certification), there will be relevant safety requirements for the relevant components and key parts of electronic appliances. Enterprises must add flame retardants in printed circuit boards, high-voltage coils, and all power cord rubber sleeves, otherwise the product testing will not pass at all

the lack of standards has become an important excuse for many enterprises not to use or use less flame retardants. Even after entering China, some multinational enterprises have adopted the standards and regulations for the application of two kinds of flame retardants because of the lack of standards, which is really regrettable

industry observation: household appliance enterprises should strengthen green

Panasonic problem refrigerators only tear open a hole for the public to understand the use of flame retardants in electronic appliances. In the future, the discussion on whether to use or not and how to use flame retardants will continue

the addition and application of flame retardants in electronic and electrical appliances is a serious and scientific behavior, and we do not want to turn it into a black show and simple hype. We pay attention to the normal application of flame retardants and the potential safety hazards of Panasonic refrigerators, not for a product or an enterprise. We just hope to report and pay attention to this matter, and hope that more enterprises and the public will pay attention to the interests of consumers to safeguard the interests of consumers. We should not squeeze, plunder and damage the interests of consumers for the commercial interests of enterprises

at this stage, due to the lack of understanding and cognition of consumers, some enterprises also lack correct and positive public opinion guidance, and some green environmental protection organizations are also out of a healthy starting point. Many people talk about the color change of "flame retardants", and there is also an embarrassment of "neither using nor not using" for the application of phosphorus and bromine flame retardants

green environmental protection and life safety are not a pair of contradictions. Although at this stage, in many household electronic and electrical products, not using flame retardants will cause serious safety accidents, and the use of flame retardants will increase the potential safety hazards in recycling or sudden accidents. But this is not without a solution. Using flame retardants that are healthy, environmentally friendly, green, pollution-free and low production cost will not only be an urgent technical problem for relevant enterprises in the future chemical industry, but also for the entire international consumer electronics industry

for a long time, the development and upgrading speed of industry, market and product technology has been far ahead of the speed of formulating relevant national product technical standards and market norms. However, many of our enterprises, especially industry leaders, cannot ignore the protection and respect for the long-term development interests of the industry and the safety interests of consumers under the excuse of missing or imperfect standards. The more in the context of the lack of standards, the more industry leaders need to promote the self-discipline and healthy development of the industry through product upgrading and technological innovation, which is what some large enterprises should do

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