Cable Heat Release, Ignition, and Spread in Tray Installations During Fire (CHRISTIFIRE), Phase 1: Horizontal Trays (NUREG/CR-7010, Volume 1)

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Publication Information

Manuscript Completed: May 2011
Date Published: July 2012

Prepared by:
Kevin McGrattan
Andrew Lock
Nathan Marsh
Marc Nyden
Scott Bareham
Michael Price (Summer Undergraduate Research Fellow)

National Institute of Standards and Technology
Building and Fire Research Laboratory
Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8663

Alexander B. Morgan
Mary Galaska
Kathy Schenck

University of Dayton Research Institute
Multi-Scale Composites and Polymers Division
Dayton, OH 45469-0160

David Stroup, NRC Project Manager

NRC Job Code N6549

Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington DC 20555-0001

Availability Notice


This report documents the first phase of a multi-year NRC research initiative entitled CHRISTIFIRE (Cable Heat Release, Ignition, and Spread in Tray Installations during FIRE). The overall goal of the program is to better understand and quantify the burning characteristics of grouped electrical cables commonly found in nuclear power plants. The first phase of the program focuses on horizontal tray configurations. The experiments conducted range from micro-scale, in which very small (5 mg) samples of cable materials were burned in a calorimeter to determine their heat of combustion and other properties; to full-scale, in which horizontal arrays of ladder-back trays loaded with varying amounts of cable were burned under a large oxygen-depletion calorimeter. Additional experiments include cone calorimetry, smoke and effluent characterization in a small test furnace, and intermediate-scale calorimetry involving a single tray of heated cables exposed to a bank of radiant panels. The results of the small-scale experiments will serve as input data for fire models; while the results of the full-scale experiments will serve as validation data for the models.

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