This question is discussed by experts at the theme day of the Verband der Materialprüfungsämter (VPMA) on 25 May, 2016. From the Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM), Dustin Häßler presents current developments on testing reactive fire-prevention systems on delicate steel tendons and Dr. Floris Akkerman puts test methods for energy-consumption-relevant products such as washing machines, vacuum cleaners or electric motors under the microscope.
It is intended that test methods accurately reflect the product details to be tested. Developing and evaluating test methods is one of BAM's responsibilities. At the conference, Dustin Häßler from BAM Department 7.3 Fire Engineering reports on current developments in testing, evaluating and standardising reactive fire-prevention systems on steel tendons. Tendons are, for the most part, delicate components used as suspension for beams and to stabilise support structures. In order to protect structures against exposure to fire, reactive coating systems are increasingly being used. The clear advantage of these is that the architectural appearance of the structures is retained due to the relatively small coating thicknesses. In the event of fire, the reactive system foams up and forms a thermal protective layer around the steel component. The steel heats up more slowly; the steel's reduction in strength is delayed; and the component's load-bearing capacity is retained for longer. Based on research results from BAM, the first building inspectorate approval for a reactive fire-prevention system ("RBS") for tendons made of steel was issued in November 2015 by the Deutsche Institut für Bautechnik (DIBt).
Dr. Floris Akkerman from the BAM Department S.4 Ecodesign and Energy Labelling speaks on the subject of compliance tests on energy-consumption-relevant products such as washing machines, vacuum cleaners or electric motors. He supports the European legislative process for these devices, above all regarding whether the measurements specified for energy efficiency are in line with actual operation, thereby making it possible to compare devices with one another. Akkerman: "In some cases, the devil is in the detail. A small change of wording in the text of the measuring instructions can have far-reaching effects."
BAM is a founding member of the association created in 1948. Since its establishment, the VMPA has been considered a pioneer in material testing in a wide range of committees. The member organisations of the MPA test, monitor and evaluate the quality of materials, products and structures in almost all areas of life. One criterion for joining the association is of particular importance: neutrality, in the sense of independence and impartiality.