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  1. Andrew, very good summing up about how this desktop study system is as full of holes as Emmenthal cheese. The reality is these desktop studies, without any real oversight, end up with the NHBC proclamations of 2016 allowing all Class 0/Euro Class B products. Who checks on these independent fire specialists, their qualifications, and the quality of their work? In fact who is checking on BRE and Exova? And when they make a nonsense desktop study allowing use of cheaper materials, what’s the betting it is then taken by other nearby firms as de facto approved and before you know that system is used on 10 other blocks?

    Regarding the Acantha panels, it is interesting that these panels are 90% mineral yet these only reach Class B, yet the versions of the metal composite panels with 90% mineral cores reach Euro A2/limited combustibility- perhaps the metal facings in this case make the difference? You are right that the Class 0/Euro Class B panels and phenolic insulation passing a BS 8414 desktop study seems shaky given the tests with mineral wool insulation only just passed- hopefully these BS 8414 tests will resolve any doubt in this area. If it does fail, it will be interesting what will happen to all these old desktop studies i.e. somehow it is agreed they will all be voided, if not other fire specialists may continue to cite them.

    Seeing as CAREA is a French company, I had a look on the French site, and these are the figures from their datasheets (all in the old French system?), not sure it gives you anything more, but here it is:

    CAREA Acantha

    Classement au feu

    M2 (M1 sur demande)

    Masse Combustible 65 à 80 MJ/m²

    CAREA Aquila

    Classement au feu


    Masse Combustible
    standard = 40 à 50 MJ/m²
    massif = 80 à 105 MJ/m²

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