EU A.16: Relative self-ignition temperature for solids

The self-ignition temperature of a substance can be used to assess situations in which a substance can spontaneously catch fire.

The purpose of the study is to provide preliminary information on the auto flammability of the teis item at elevated temperatures.

(Explosive substances and substances which ignite spontaneously in contact with air at ambient temperature should not be submitted to this test. For solids, the melting point should be known beforehand, as substances that melt at <160°C do not need to be tested).

Study Design

Course of the test

Apparatus - programmed laboratory oven

The test procedure is useful as a preliminary screening test for solid substances. In view of the complex nature of the ignition and combustion of solids, the self-ignition temperature determined according to this test method should be used for comparison purposes only.

The cube will be completely filled with the test item. Afterwards it will be suspended in the centre of the oven at room temperature. One thermocouple will be placed at the centre of the cube and the other between the cube and the oven wall to record the oven temperature. The temperatures of the oven and the sample are continuously recorded while the temperature of the oven will be increased to the melting point of the test item or to approximately 400 °C at a rate of 0.5 °C/min. Temperature measurement between room temperature and melting temperature of the test item will be evaluated (if applicable).

The test procedure will be repeated at least two times using independent test item samples.


The self-ignition temperature [°C] and the physical state of the test item will be reported at the end of the experiment.

The self-ignition temperature as obtained by this method, is the minimum ambient temperature at which a certain volume of a test item will ignite under defined conditions.

Guidelines and Literature

  • Commission Regulation (EC) No 440/2008 laying down test methods pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) (originally published as Council Regulation (EC) No 440/2008, corrigendum according to Official Journal of the European Union (EN) dated June 3, 2008, L 143/55), Annex, Part A, A.16.: “Relative Self-Ignition Temperature for solids”, Official Journal of the European Union, L 142, Volume 51, 31 May 2008