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AIR6160 - Magnesium Alloys in Aircraft Seats - Developments in Magnesium Alloy Flammability Testing

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Document Number: AIR6160
Project Initiation: 10-15-2010
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Title
Magnesium Alloys in Aircraft Seats - Developments in Magnesium Alloy Flammability Testing
Scope
To support the use of magnesium alloys in aircraft seat applications by removal of the restrictive paragraph in SAE Standard AS8049B, Para 3.3.3, 'magnesium alloys shall not be used.'
Rationale
In the interest of reducing the weight of civil and commercial aircraft for fuel economy and environmental reasons, aircraft seat producers would like to take advantage of the potential light weighting benefits of magnesium alloys in seat structure. Current SAE standards and related FAA specifications do not allow magnesium for use in aircraft seat construction. The restriction of magnesium is presumed to be flammability and the possibility of an increased hazard level in an inflight or post crash fire situation. Flammability testing by the FAA and others has demonstrated that the hazard level is not increased when magnesium alloys with certain chemistries are employed in this application. In order to consider the removal of the restrictions contained in the SAE AS 8049 Standard, this report is offered as documentation of these evaluations and conclusions.
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