CPR - The cable as a supporting pillar in fire protection
The latest fire protection findings are put into practice in modern new buildings. Fire protection legislation has also evolved over the past few years. However, it is not economically feasible to adapt every building to the current standard. In the event of a fire, visitors to the building often have very little time to escape the fire. Often, the greatest danger is not the flames themselves, but the formation of smoke and toxic gases that are produced when plastics are burned. These can cause irreversible damage to the lungs in no time at all.
In order to curb this risk, construction materials are tested and classified for their fire behaviour. One of the most important classifications is the CPR classification. We use the following information and decision-making tools to show you what the CPR classification contains, how cables and wires with CPR classification help to reduce hazards and how you find the best cable for your application.
What does CPR mean?
If a cable is tested for its own fire behaviour and meets all common limit values, it is assigned to a CPR class of levels ACA to FCA on the basis of certain classification criteria. Extensive means CPR: "Construction Product Regulation". The designation comes from EU Regulation no. 305/2011. In the German legal framework, the term is the Construction Products Regulation (BauPVO).
Our engineers at LAPP have classified many articles for you so that we can offer you a wide range of cables for your construction project. You can recognise these products by the fact that we always provide the CPR declaration for download in addition to the data sheet. We also provide you with a complete list of all CPR-classified articles in the download centre under "CPR declaration of performance".
How is a cable or a wire classified by the CPR?
When a cable is tested for its fire behaviour, strict statutory limit values in several classifications must not be exceeded. We will show you an extract of the classifications that measure the course of a fire:
- Spread of flames
- Heat development
- Smoke development (gradient s1a, s1b, s1, s2, s3)
- Acid formation (grades a1, a2, a3)
- Formation of burning drops (grades d0, d1, d2)
These classifications are also reflected in the Euro classes, the various levels of CPR certification. The lower abbreviation "ca" in the relevant class stands for "cable".
|Construction inspection designation||Class||Test procedure||Classification criteria||Additional classification|
|Non-flammable||Aca||EN ISO 1716||PCS ≤ 2,0 MJ/kg|
|Flame-retardant||B1ca||EN 50399 (30 kW burner)
|FS ≤ 1,75 m and
THR1200s ≤ 10 MJ and
Peak HRR ≤ 20 kW and
FIGRA ≤ 120 Ws-1
|Smoke generation and burning droplets/decreases and acid content|
|"||B1ca||EN 60332-1-2||H ≤ 425 mm||"|
|"||B2ca||EN 50399 (20,5 kW burner)
|FS ≤ 1,5 m; and
THR1200s ≤ 15 MJ; and
Peak HRR ≤ 30 kW; and
FIGRA ≤ 150 Ws-1
|"||B2ca||EN 60332-1-2||H ≤ 425 mm||"|
|"||Cca||EN 50399 (20,5 kW burner)
|FS ≤ 2,0 m; and
THR1200s ≤ 30 MJ; and
Peak HRR ≤ 60 kW; and
FIGRA ≤ 300 Ws-1
|"||Cca||EN 60332-1-2||H ≤ 425 mm||"|
|Normally flammable||Dca||EN 50399 (20,5 kW burner)
|THR1200s ≤ 70 MJ; and
Peak HRR ≤ 400 kW; and
FIGRA ≤ 1300 Ws-1
|"||Dca||EN 60332-1-2||H ≤ 425 mm||"|
|"||Eca||EN 60332-1-2||H ≤ 425 mm|
|Highly flammable||Fca||EN 60332-1-2||H > 425 mm|
Graphic illustration of the "Euro classes for construction product cables" (Source: White Paper Fire Protection Cables by ZVEI)
Most PVC cables achieve lower classes than Eca or Dca, while high-quality cables provide Halogen-free cables considerably better performance and can achieve classes Cca and B2ca. As the requirements of Euro class Aca are too high to offer an economical product with conventional thermoplastic materials, it is not possible in practice to achieve Euro class Aca for cables.
Where are CPR-certified cables used?
Cables and wires with a CPR declaration of performance and thus an assigned CPR class are primarily used in construction works. Depending on the safety requirements of the construction, a higher CPR class may be required. The variety of CPR-classified cables that we at LAPP can offer you for a wide range of applications is particularly noteworthy.
The classic of the CPR-classified power and control cables are our ÖLFLEX CLASSIC 100 H and ÖLFLEX CLASSIC 110 H cables, which, thanks to their halogen-free materials, exhibit outstanding behaviour, especially in the event of fire, and are also available shielded in the CH variant.
CPR-classified cables are primarily used, but not exclusively, in construction works. This ETHERLINE® PN CAT.7 FRNC FLEX A is, for example, a data cable that can be used to wire buildings and control cabinets in PROFINET networks. Another area of application is our ÖLFLEX® HEAT 125 C MC, a control cable with DNV-GL certification for maritime use.
How does a CPR-certified cable help with fire protection?
In order to clarify the concept of fire protection, it makes sense to split it into two areas.
The first sub-area is fire prevention. All components should contribute to preventing a fire or preventing its spread. Self-extinguishing and flame-retardant properties are an indispensable aid here.
The second sub-area essentially involves saving people from enclosed rooms in the event of a fire. It is important that a high level of smoke is avoided and that the toxicity of gases does not make it more difficult for people to escape.
The use of a cable with low acid formation and low smoke generation is therefore a suitable fire protection measure. The Euro classes make the strengths of the cables transparent on the basis of clear classification criteria and specific testing procedures. This ensures that you can easily find the right cables for your application during construction planning.
Which standards describe the structure of a cable?
Regulation (EU) Nr. 305/2011:
According to European Regulation (EU) No. 305/2011, the CPR classification is mandatory for construction products and includes cables for the first time. The Manufacturer must create a "Declaration of Performance" (DoP), a translation of a declaration of performance. The DoP documents the respective classes of the product. Exact calorific values are not specified. It is also the case that only the main class is specified for the classes ECA and FCA.
DIN EN 50575 or VDE 0482-575:2017-02:
This harmonised standard results in the requirements for the fire behaviour of cables for permanent use in construction works. With the help of their special properties, cables should help to prevent fire and smoke from spreading.
DIN EN 13501-6:2019-05:
DIN EN 13501-6:2019-05 defines the fire protection classes of cables. These are divided into Euro classes according to their performance in the fire behaviour tests. The standard therefore describes the requirements for a cable per class for which the product is classified.
How is the relationship between CPR, DoP and CE conformity explained?
Illustration of "CPR, DoP and CE correlation" (Source: White Paper Fire Protection Cables by ZVEI)
For CE conformity, cables and wires of classes ECA and higher must be subjected to type testing. From class CCA and higher, these even have to undergo regular checks in the form of factory audits and sampling.
Reaction to Fire
|Conformity certification system||Tasks of notified body|
|Aca, B1ca, B2ca, Cca||1+||
Graphic illustration of "Conformity Certificate System" (Source: White Paper Fire Protection Cables by ZVEI)
For commercial resellers, you can find the CE marking obligation and practical label templates in the Download centre. As there is little space on cables, only the CE mark is printed on the outer sheath. The complete label is then stuck to the packaging of the cables.
When is the use of a CPR-classified cable mandatory?
European Regulation (EU) No. 305/2011 states that cables used for permanent installation in construction works must be tested for their fire behaviour. The decision as to which Euro class the cables and wires in a building have should depend on the use and purpose of the building.
The harmonisation means that the Euro classes are the same in every EU Member State. However, the legal requirements vary greatly from country to country as to which Euro class the cables in a building must comply with.
What are the minimum requirements for the cables used under German construction law?
The Model Building Regulation (MBO) stipulates in § 26 section 1 the use of cables in accordance with fire class Eca or better.
If a cable with CPR certification in accordance with Euro class Fca is used, it is subject to a number of conditions: The surrounding materials must comply with fire protection class Eca or higher and are therefore considered to be easily flammable.