- 2000 OCT 18 -


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00-10-18    .....

            John GARSTANG made it back from the FAA burn tests.  He advised that they had gone well, with everything going as well as expected, and in certain cases, better.  The end caps all burnt and failed their respective burn tests.  It seems that if they glow and decompose slowly, they do no fail.  It was found that some glow, then flame, then glow, and then flame again.  Others were consumed quickly.  It seems that Boeing has advised Swissair that their caps have all passed the tests, and that there is nothing wrong with them.  The Boeing rep was present and apparently was very surprised with the results.  They will now have to listen to Larry FOGG and make some changes.  He advised that Howard GREEN from the Nature of Things was present and was able to get everything on film for their program.  Testing was done on the Metallized Tedlar and Mylar blankets from the material recently supplied by Zurich.  While the Mylar blankets have been found to readily burn, these blankets were soiled and patched with Tedlar tape.  They were found to burn even more readily, especially the Tedlar tape.  The Tedlar blankets did not burn as readily, unless soiled and taped with Tedlar tape.  It was found that the Tedlar tape does not have the same properties as the Tedlar blanket material, and readily burnt.  They now have a problem, because the tape is unmarked as to lot numbers, etc.  Only the roll cardboard center has an ID sticker, and this is thrown away when the roll is used up.  So, there is no way of knowing when or who the manufacturer is, the lot numbers, etc. of the tape that is already in the aircraft flying about.  And Metallized Tedlar tape has been used to patch Metallized Mylar blankets, potentially a very lethal combination.

            This might now account for the heavy damage to the ducts in the fire area, as the Metallized Mylar blankets and Metallized Tedlar tape will be a fuel source.  John GARSTANG seems satisfied that the amount present will account for the damage to the ducts.  However, is it enough to create a 1700 deg F fire for five minutes on the door slide-ceiling panel?  I am not convinced.

(Clarification:)    Later burn tests at the FAA proved me to be correct, that even though they burnt, they did not produce high heat.



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