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Why must fire-protection be used?
National and European standards for construction products highlight fire-prevention safety as an essential requirement.
The term fire-protection includes all provisions aimed at keeping to a minimum fire damage to people and property and limiting the consequences of such damage.
These provisions can be divided into two broad categories. Active fire protection classifies all the protective measures that require human action or the activation of equipment such as sprinkler systems, alarms and fire extinguishers. Passive fire protection, on the other hand, has as its aim limiting the effects of the fire so as to make it possible to evacuate the building and to make people and property safe within a certain time period. The regulations classify this rating by the abbreviation REI, accompanied by a number representing the number of minutes required.
What is intumescence?
When steel, wooden and concrete surfaces protected with intumescent paint are exposed to temperatures over 200 - 250 C° a layer of extremely compact carbonaceous foam forms whose volume is much greater than the dry thickness of the paint. This blocks heat transmission for a period of time, expressed in minutes, of fire-resistance, thus preventing the temperature rise resulting from the fire from reaching the core of the element in question and causing it to deform and bring about structural collapse. An essential feature of Amonn intumescent paints is the optimum ratio between the thickness of paint applied and the intumescence they produce.
What does the abbreviation REI mean?
The regulations use the abbreviation REI to define fire-resistance, that being the capacity of a building or part of it or a construction element to maintain the following properties for a fixed length of time.
R: STABILITY – this is required of structural elements and refers to their ability to maintain their mechanical resistance when exposed to fire.
E: INTEGRITY – the ability of an element when exposed to fire on one side to prevent the production of flames, vapours and hot gasses on the side not exposed to fire and to prevent their transfer to that side.
I: THERMAL INSULATION – the ability to reduce heat transmission
The regulations for passive fire protection can describe one or more of these specifications at once.
For example: 
R 45 – Stability, more commonly known as resistance to fire, is indicated by the letter R followed by the number of minutes it must guarantee to remain effective, in this case 45 minutes.
REI 90 – Here the resistance is accompanied by requirements E and I, thus becoming REI, still followed by a number indicating the required duration in minutes, in this case 90.
EI 120 – For separating, non-load-bearing elements, for example brickwork in boiler rooms, the requirements are simply integrity and thermal insulation, indicated by the abbreviation EI, again followed by the duration in minutes, in this case 120.
What’s the difference between reaction and resistance to fire?
Reaction is one of those preventative safety measures that reduce the risk of fire during the initial ignition/triggering phase. Resistance, in contrast, describes the situation when fire has broken out and there is a need to guarantee that the structures are able to resist its effect for the length of time necessary to evacuate the building and extinguish the fire. For example, if we wish to make a chair fire-retardant, we are dealing with its reaction to fire, because the purpose of the paint or varnish is to prevent the chair from being a combustion-triggering material. If however, the aim is to make load-bearing beams fire-retardant, it is necessary to guarantee the integrity of the beams for sufficient time to call in the fire brigade and to get people to a safe place.