Engineering Definitions
"A", "B", "C", "D", "E", "F", "G", "H", "I", "J", "K", "L", "M",
"N", "O", "P", "Q", "R", "S", "T", "U", "V", "W", "X", "Y", "Z"

Fire Retardant Materials

Fire-retardant materials. Materials that do not ignite readily or propagate flames under small to moderate fire exposures. While these materials are combustible, their fire-retardant nature tends to reduce the intensity and spread of fire, smoke, and toxic products of combustion. In some cases combustion may be delayed with Fire-retardant materials.

ABS PLASTIC. A type of plastic formed by Acrylonitrilt Butadiene Styrene and other chemicals. ABS is considered a thermoplastic resin. There are more than a dozen types of ABS plastic. ABS 'plastic' becomes fire retardant by adding additives, or by blending ABS with PVC. There can be a number of different thermal grades.

Because of high smoke output, cables using PVC material are not to be used in enclosed environments or shipboard applications [Navy]. The Air Force has restricted use of PVC in aerospace and ground support applications. I would assume that the Army would have similar issues with PVC or other substances that produce a high smoke output in their vehicles.

In other words; if your working a department of defense job, try not to use PVC cables. As you may find that the use of PVC is not allowed, a costly change after cables have already been selected. Although in some cases it may be difficult to find replacement cables that do not use PVC as the insulation material [flat cable for example].
The general requirements for a job may not define or prohibit using PVC, but a sub-specification may specifically indicate that PVC is not to be used. In other words always check the material the cable jacket is made of and make a note of it encase the issue comes up in a design review. Some contracts might assume that the contractor is aware of the details of individual DOD specification used in a program and not specifically indicate no PVC material because it's called out in a number of specifications [as in PVC is not to be used].

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