Fire protection technology and products have grown in effectiveness and popularity over the years. You may wonder how we arrived at modern-day fire protection codes and materials from ancient techniques. Keep reading to learn more if you are curious about the evolution of fireproofing and how it improved over time.
Origins of Fireproofing
While the first examples of fire-retardant materials date back to around 400 B.C., builders did not realize their importance until the 17th century. One of the first applications of fire-retardant materials during this time was reducing the fire risk in theatres in Paris. Large-occupancy buildings like these were sites for some of the worst fires throughout history, which was why fireproofing became so important. Fast forward a few centuries, and societies began to implement fire codes and standards for keeping buildings safe, learning from fireproofing advancements and previous fire events. Observation and experimentation are how many modern fire laws and codes came to be.
Early Fireproofing Materials
Some of the earliest fireproofing materials were clay and those that form natural fire resistance. In the 17th century, builders fireproofed plaster and clay to protect theatres and other high-occupancy buildings. During the 18th century, chemists also found ways to make fabrics and other natural materials flame-resistant by using two types of salt. Eventually, scientists discovered THPC in 1953, which experts could apply to cotton, paper, plastic, and paint, leading to the development of modern-day fireproofing materials.
Examples of Modern Fireproofing
One of the biggest examples of modern fireproofing is the intumescent paint. This type of fire-retardant coating provides passive fire protection and activates when heat reaches it. Some intumescent paint formulations still contain ammonium, mirroring old salt-based fireproofing from the 18th century. However, this formula has evolved and grown to offer superior fire resistance in the modern day. Now, intumescent paints help protect buildings across a wide range of industries and applications, from industrial plants to residences.
Now that you know more about the evolution of fireproofing and how it improved over the years, you can fully appreciate the significance of today’s fireproofing materials. You can find fire-resistant coatings at Firefree Inc. if you want to learn more about intumescent paints or wish to purchase some for your professional applications. We are here to support businesses and residential construction projects by providing quality fire-retardant materials.