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Award Abstract #1347196

CAREER: Understanding Flammability of Charring Polymers

Div Of Chem, Bioeng, Env, & Transp Sys
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Initial Amendment Date: November 22, 2013
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Latest Amendment Date: November 22, 2013
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Award Number: 1347196
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Award Instrument: Standard Grant
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Program Manager: Song-Charng Kong
CBET Div Of Chem, Bioeng, Env, & Transp Sys
ENG Directorate For Engineering
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Start Date: April 1, 2014
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End Date: March 31, 2019 (Estimated)
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Awarded Amount to Date: $412,418.00
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Investigator(s): Stanislav Stoliarov stolia@umd.edu (Principal Investigator)
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Sponsor: University of Maryland College Park
3112 LEE BLDG 7809 Regents Drive
COLLEGE PARK, MD 20742-5141 (301)405-6269
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Program Reference Code(s): 061E, 062E, 1045, 148E
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Program Element Code(s): 1407



This proposal describes a five-year project focused on developing a quantitative understanding of burning for charring and intumescing polymeric systems. These systems represent one of the most promising and environmentally benign solutions to the hazards associated with polymer flammability. The mechanism of their flame resistance has not been well understood, hampering material development efforts. The PI proposes to design a set of controlled radiative pyrolysis experiments combined with a high-resolution X-ray tomography, thermogravimetric analysis and differential scanning calorimetry. This combination of experimental techniques is expected to yield accurate data on the kinetics and thermodynamics of the thermal degradation, char morphology evolution, and heat flow inside this class of materials. The experimental results will be interpreted using a numerical model concurrently developed. This model is capable of simulating transient conductive, radiative and convective heat transfer, mass transport, and multiple chemical reactions in a three-dimensional, non-homogeneous object of non-static dimensions.

This project will produce an in-depth understanding of char growth dynamics in a wide range of polymeric systems including a new generation of biodegradable materials. This understanding is expected to transform the field of flame resistant material design and enable qualitative improvements in public safety. The research results will be rapidly disseminated among scientists and practicing engineers and utilized to strengthen an array of partnerships that the PI has established with industry and professional organizations. These results will also form a foundation of the PI?s educational initiatives. The PI will develop an interactive material flammability demonstration for secondary school students. This demonstration will be used to foster the student?s interest in science while promoting fire safety. The PI will combat a low graduation rate among racial minority college undergraduates by engaging them in the fire safety research. The PI will also develop the first of its kind graduate course on material flammability.


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Li J.; Gong J.; Stoliarov S. I.. "Gasification Experiments for Pyrolysis Model Parameterization and Validation," International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer, 2014.

Li J.; Stoliarov S. I.. "Measurement of Kinetics and Thermodynamics of the Thermal Degradation for Charring Polymers," Polymer Degradation and Stability, 2014.

Li J.; Gong J.; Stoliarov S. I.. "Development of Pyrolysis Models for Charring Polymers," Polymer Degradation and Stability, v.115, 2015.

Li J.; Stoliarov S. I.. "Measurement of Kinetics and Thermodynamics of the Thermal Degradation for Charring Polymers," Polymer Degradation and Stability, v.106, 2014.


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