Halon replacement: The law and the options



Halons 1301 and 1211 have been employed widely for over 20 years in a broad array of fire and explosion protection applications. These chemicals, however, have been determined to be environmentally unfriendly due to their high ozone depleting potentials. International treaty, national laws and local ordinances have severely limited the future use of these chemicals. Production in the United States will likely come to an effective halt by 1994. A number of alternative chemicals have been suggested as potential replacements for the halons both in total flooding and streaming agent applications. A comparison of the several viable halon alternatives is made including performance, cost and availability. Areas where new applications data are required are noted.