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Kaneka’s Fire-Resistant Products Ensures Human Safety

Kaneka India Pvt. Ltd. stands as a prominent subsidiary of Kaneka Corporation, a multinational conglomerate headquartered in Japan, with a robust global presence across various industries such as chemicals, pharmaceuticals, food products, and electronic materials. Established within India, Kaneka pioneers innovative solutions across multiple sectors including healthcare, electronics, and sustainable materials. Leveraging the advanced technologies and expertise of its parent company, Kaneka India offers a diverse range of high-quality products and services finely crafted to cater to the dynamic needs of the Indian markets.

With a steadfast commitment to sustainability and corporate responsibility, Kaneka India places a strong emphasis on incorporating environmentally friendly practices into its operations. Through continual research and development, alongside a customer-centric approach, Kaneka endeavors to make significant contributions to the growth and advancement of India’s industrial landscape while simultaneously ensuring a positive societal impact.

In an exclusive dialogue with The Interview World, Sumit Banik, Senior Manager – New Business Development at Kaneka India Pvt. Ltd., provides insights into their fire-resistant products and the underlying technology driving them. Here, we present the key highlights from his interview.

Q: What specific features and materials comprise your fire-resistant products?

A: Protex, our specialized brand crafted from modacrylic fiber, boasts inherent flame-retardant qualities ingrained within the very fabric of its resin. When subjected to a flame, Protex swiftly extinguishes itself upon removal of the ignition source, rendering it exceptionally safe.

What sets Protex apart is its enduring flame-retardant properties, resilient even after repeated washings and prolonged use. This steadfast resilience ensures consistent protection, without any compromise in effectiveness over time.

In practical terms, this means Protex offers unparalleled safety benefits. Attempting to ignite Protex yields no combustion, making it a vital tool in safeguarding human lives. Consider individuals toiling in high-risk environments like oil, gas, welding, or metal industries, where fire and electric arc hazards are omnipresent. For them, Protex serves as an indispensable shield against potential calamities, providing peace of mind and ensuring they can focus on their work without compromising their safety.

Q: What is the threshold temperature at which your materials become flammable?

A: Certainly. Protex, in contrast to burning, undergoes a transformative process known as charring. Upon ignition, rather than combustion, it generates a char—a protective layer—that releases gas, creating a barrier against oxygen. This barrier effectively hinders the spread of flames. Unlike many materials, Protex demonstrates remarkable resilience against high temperatures, maintaining its structural integrity without melting or dripping.

The char-forming barrier serves as a formidable defense mechanism, containing the fire’s advancement even after the removal of the ignition source. This unique property not only prevents the spread of flames but also ensures the fabric’s integrity. Moreover, Protex’s resistance to melting or dripping is critical for safety, as it eliminates the risk of producing molten droplets that could adhere to the skin, causing severe burns—a common hazard associated with polyester and other thermoplastic fibers.

Ultimately, Protex’s ability to form a char and extinguish itself provides a reliable safeguard against fire-related accidents, making it an invaluable choice for various applications.

Q: What specific technological innovations or principles underpin your products, and how do they contribute to their functionality and performance?

A: The chemical at hand represents a copolymer formed from a blend of acrylonitrile and beryllium chloride, meticulously chosen for its robust fire-retardant properties. Acrylonitrile copolymers, when precisely engineered, unveil remarkable capabilities in thwarting the advancement of fire. Such copolymers are indispensable in various industries, finding application in the fabrication of textiles, coatings, and plastics engineered to withstand flames. Through the strategic integration of acrylonitrile-based materials into diverse products, we effectively curtail the likelihood of fire ignition and its subsequent spread, ensuring enhanced safety standards.

Conversely, beryllium chloride emerges as a standout compound renowned for its prowess in fire suppression. Its distinctive attributes enable it to serve as a highly efficient flame suppressant, especially when dispersed in a fine mist. This dispersion effectively disrupts combustion reactions, impeding the chemical processes fundamental to fire propagation. Notably, beryllium chloride-based fire suppression systems offer invaluable utility in environments where traditional methods like water or foam may pose limitations, such as environments housing sensitive electronic equipment or areas where concerns regarding collateral water damage prevail.

Additionally, we introduce a specialized FR monomer into our formulation. This proprietary FR monomer plays a pivotal role by emitting gas that acts as a barrier, hindering oxygen from fueling the flame, thereby augmenting the fire-retardant efficacy of our products.

Q: Do fire brigades use your products as well?

A: Firefighters rely on a variety of aramid-based materials to brave the intense environments of burning structures. Aramid, a synthetic fiber known for its exceptional strength and resistance to high temperatures, is extensively used in firefighting gear, industrial gloves, and protective clothing. These materials provide crucial insulation and durability in extreme conditions, ensuring the safety and effectiveness of firefighters on the front lines.

It’s important to distinguish that while our materials are designed for working near fire, they are not intended for direct exposure to flames. Firefighters require specialized equipment to enter burning buildings and rescue individuals safely. Our products are tailored to support tasks conducted near fires, offering reliable performance and protection for workers in hazardous environments. At present, our focus remains on developing materials suited for working near fires, rather than those specifically engineered for firefighting operations within flames.

Flame-Retardant Materials Developed by Kaneka
Flame-Retardant Materials Developed by Kaneka
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