Recent developments of intumescent fire-protective coatings used in steel buildings are important to ensure the structural integrity and safe evacuation of occupants during fire accidents. Flame-retardant intumescent coating applied to structural steel could delay the spread of fire and heat propagation across spaces and structures in minimizing fire risks. This research focuses on formulating a green intumescent coating utilized the BioAsh, a by-product derived from natural rubberwood (hardwood) biomass combustion as the natural substitute of mineral fillers in the intumescent coating. Fire resistance, chemical, physical and mechanical properties of all samples were examined via Bunsen burner, thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), carbolite furnace, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), Fourier transform infrared (FTIR), freeze–thaw cycle, static immersion and Instron pull-off adhesion test. Sample BioAsh intumescent coating (BAIC) 4-7 incorporated with 3.5 wt.% BioAsh exhibited the best performances in terms of fire resistance (112.5 °C for an hour under the Bunsen burner test), thermal stability (residual weight of 29.48 wt.% at 1000 °C in TGA test), adhesion strength (1.73 MPa under Instron pull-off adhesion test), water resistance (water absorption rate of 8.72%) and freeze–thaw durability (no crack, blister and color change) as compared to other samples. These results reveal that an appropriate amount of renewable BioAsh incorporated as natural mineral fillers into the intumescent coating could lead to better fire resistance and mechanical properties for the steel structures.
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