Sampling and testing of ACP cladding

Facade Cladding Testing for Flammability Potential and Composition

Wednesday 18 October, 2017

In light of the recent Lacrosse fire in Docklands, Melbourne, and the tragic Grenfell fire in the UK, the dangers of non-complying and flammable Aluminium Composite Panel (ACP) cladding, or Aluminium Composite Materials (ACM) cladding, has been an important discussion throughout the built environment industry. Though there is no individual body or organisation to directly blame, the general consensus of all involved is that all stakeholders need to step up to understand the risks of potential flammable cladding.

Through Foray Laboratories, which is wholly owned by CETEC, we can use a range of analytical techniques to assist all stakeholders (Building Owners, Insurers, Fire Engineers, Facility Management, Body Corporate) to better understand the composition, flammability potential and toxicity of questionable aluminium cladding.

These techniques include:

  • FTIR for compositional analysis
  • DSC for phase analysis
  • Thermal Stability and Decomposition Test
  • Micro-Flammability Test

Furthermore, our trained and professional staff can conduct on site, in-situ sampling or sampling of provided panels (spare panels or off-cuts). Access can be gained from sidewalks, balconies, window cleaning gondolas, scissor lifts and cherry pickers. A core sample takes only minutes to collect and as it only leaves a small hole ( less than 50 mm) which can easily be refilled if needed.

The above analysis techniques are cost competitive with: AS 5113 - Fire propagation testing and classification of external walls of buildings and AS 1530 - Methods for fire tests on building materials, components and structures - and have significantly quicker turnaround times.

Our on-site sampling and laboratory services are available throughout Australia and internationally.

Read more about our Facade Cladding Testing for Flammability Potential and Composition service or contact us to learn more.

January 2018 update

In late 2017, the Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) and its members conducted round robin testing with laboratories to identify those that could accurately classify the different categories of Aluminium Composite Panels (ACP).

As a result of this testing, CETEC is now one of two organisations which ICA have recommended that can identify ACPs correctly to meet their protocols.   Read more