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Earthquakes are major loss triggers in buildings. However, there is something that can be even more harmful – the fire following earthquakes. Fire is the most common post-earthquake risk and is often caused by damaged piping and electric systems.
At Hilti we have conducted extensive tests according to the latest industry standards. As a result, we provide independently approved solutions that have been tested to withstand movement during seismic events.
With this we commit to our ultimate purpose of saving lives, protecting assets and improving building performance.
We usually only hear about earthquakes when they are devastating, but they happen every day all over the world. In fact, earthquakes are just one of the frequent sources of movement in buildings. Other sources of movement are vibrations and expansions of pipes, water hammer effect or structural deflections.
Movement can damage gas pipelines and electrical systems, increasing the risk of fire. It might impair active firefighting systems such as detection or sprinkler systems, as it cuts off the water supply or causes damage to the pipes. This is when the life safety in building relies greatly on passive fire protection systems that do not depend on electricity or water supply.
In the past, earthquake engineering focused on the design of structural elements to prevent the collapse of buildings.
However, this has changed to include non-structural elements as well. Some interesting facts:
With the development of more stringent requirements for non-structural systems in building regulations, manufacturers must offer firestop systems that have been tested according to worldwide recognized standards such as EN or ASTM.
Testing standards are constantly developing. Every year new standards get published to accommodate the needs of the industry and ultimately improve life safety.
One example is the ASTM E-3037 standard, published in November of 2016 and formally titled “Test Method for Measuring Relative Movement Capabilities of Through-Penetration Firestop Systems.” This new standard sets testing guidelines to assess the movement capability of through penetration products such as pipe and cable penetrations. Hilti products go through a two-direction cycling test followed by a fire test. The results are then classified as A, B or C – A being the best movement performance for a given direction.
Movement test in perpendicular direction
Movement test in parallel direction
We have tested most of our products from sealants such as FS-ONE Max, to preformed devices such as the speed sleeve or blocks. All have shown satisfactory results and in general the preformed devices are outstanding compared to traditional firestopping systems such as firestopping mortars or coated boards.
In the case of joint and façade applications, the movement capability is tested according to standard ASTM E1399. All our products have undergone these tests and show very satisfactory movement performance.
These tests have been accredited by third party organizations such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and we show the movement capability of the systems in their respective UL listings.
We are committed to continuously improving life safety in buildings by developing and testing our firestop systems according to the latest industry standards.
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