High Performance, Zero ODP Halon 1301 Replacement

EPA Contract Number: 68D00255
Title: High Performance, Zero ODP Halon 1301 Replacement
Investigators: Nimitz, Jonathan S.
Small Business: Nimitz Inc.
EPA Contact: Manager, SBIR Program
Phase: I
Project Period: September 1, 2000 through March 1, 2001
Project Amount: $70,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (2000) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: SBIR - Pollution Prevention , Pollution Prevention/Sustainable Development , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)


A new zero-ozone depleting potential (ODP), high-performance, clean fire and explosion suppression agent has been discovered. This agent is more effective and less expensive than Halon 1301 and requires about 50 percent less weight and volume. It appears that it can be used in the same delivery systems. Also, it will allow the use of smaller, lighter extinguishing systems for applications such as military and civilian aircraft in the future, thereby saving space and fuel. The Phase I objective is to determine the cup-burner extinguishment concentrations for the agent with seven common fuels. These fuels are heptane, jet fuels JP-4 and JP-5, diesel No. 2, hydraulic fluid No.1, turbo hydraulic oil 2380, and unleaded gasoline oxygenated with 8 percent ethanol. Chamber extinguishment tests will be conducted to determine the effectiveness of the agent at a larger scale. Fractionation tests will be conducted to determine how concentrations vary if a leak develops.

The Phase I and II efforts will demonstrate and validate a clean, high-performance, environmentally friendly fire and explosion suppression agent. The primary objective of this project is to obtain sufficient quantity and quality of data to support commercial introduction of the agent. Phase II of this effort will provide performance data at a larger scale under a variety of scenarios as well as data on compatibility, decomposition products in flames, thermal stability, and equipment requirements. Phase II will prepare the product for commercialization.

Potential commercial applications include all normally unoccupied spaces where weight and volume considerations are important. This includes aircrafts, ships, telecommunications equipment, and floating roofs for oil storage. The market for clean firefighting agents worldwide is estimated to be 5 million pounds per year. An estimated eventual 50 percent market share would be 2.5 million pounds per year, or $50 million per year at $20 per pound. The market for retrofit of existing Halon 1301 systems would perhaps double the base market, giving a total market of about $100 million per year.

Supplemental Keywords:

small business, SBIR, pollution prevention, ozone, halon alternative, engineering, chemistry, EPA., RFA, Scientific Discipline, Air, Toxics, Sustainable Industry/Business, Chemical Engineering, cleaner production/pollution prevention, Environmental Chemistry, Sustainable Environment, Chemistry, climate change, Technology for Sustainable Environment, CFCs, Atmospheric Sciences, Chemistry and Materials Science, Engineering, Chemistry, & Physics, Environmental Engineering, environmental monitoring, clean technologies, clean technology, halon replacement, ozone depleting chemicals, halon alternative, halons, explosion suppression agent, clean fire agent

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final Report