Aerosol Fire Suppression System: An Alternative to FM200 and Inert Gas Systems
By John Philip Espiloy | 25 May 2022
The aerosol fire suppression technology is a new type of fire extinguishing system developed based on military pyrotechnics. Though this technology started in the early 1960s known before as smoke fire suppression, it evolved into what it is today.
Development of Aerosol Fire Suppression System
Rigorous research on automatic smoke fire suppression technology began in the 1960s. This technology focuses on extinguishing fires in Classes A, B and C.
The rising concerns about the environmental impact of halon fire suppression agents put pressure on finding alternative solutions. By the end of the
1980s, scientists succeeded in researching aerosol fire suppression technology as an alternative to halon systems.
It attracted attention from international communities such as the United States, Australia, The Netherlands, Malaysia, China, etc. to do more extensive research on this technology.
Aerosol Fire Suppression System: Application Range
The aerosol fire suppression system has various application ranges, these are as follows:
Electrical fire in places containing precision instruments and devices such as Data Center, Server Room, Communication Room, Base station, Computer Room, Power Distribution Room, Generator Room, etc.
It can be used in areas where combustible solid materials are stored.
It can also be applied to areas where the combustible liquid is stored. These combustible liquids are also classified as a flammable liquids. Some examples of flammable liquids are diesel oil, transformer oil, animal and vegetable oil, etc.
Though aerosol fire suppression technology has lots of applications, there are however some limitations.
It cannot be used in areas that store substances that oxidize without air, active metals, metal hydrides, and strong oxidants.
It cannot be applied to put out the fire caused by combustible solid materials.
It is not suitable for areas with explosion hazards.
Though aerosol produces non-corrosive non-conductive residue after it dispenses. It is not advisable to use it in an ultra-clean environment, such as pharmaceutical laboratories, microchip processing areas, medical rooms, etc.
How does it work?
We heard of the three major components of the fire triangle. But the aerosol technology introduces another component, the uninhibited chain reaction, making it a fire tetrahedron. Aerosol technology starts with the chemical process.
It extinguishes fire through nanoparticles in which the extinguishing agent decomposes rapidly by splitting water and carbon dioxide.
Aerosol Fire Suppression System Advantages and Disadvantages
Aerosol fire suppression devices are easy to install. It requires no piping as that with the FM200 or other fire suppression systems. When discharged, the aerosol extinguishing agent stays in the air for almost 1 hour, therefore, ensuring that flames are out. It can also be applied for both local and total flooding applications.
The aerosol fire suppression system requires no maintenance at all since it didn’t have pressurized tanks that needed frequent check-ups. The aerosol agent is also far cheaper as compared to Halocarbon and Inert gas agents.
We are all concerned with the environmental impact and our safety, the aerosol fire suppression system’s Global Warming Potential (GWP) is ZERO. It has no toxic by-products and once released in a room, it has no thermal shock.
Unlike other fire extinguishing systems, aerosol fire suppression systems don’t require extensive room integrity tests. Some companies even offer a 15 years factory warranty on their aerosol fire suppression products.
There are, however, some disadvantages to using this system. Depending on the aerosol fire suppression product, most of them are limited to indoor or enclosed areas.
Aerosol Fire Suppression System vs FM200 and Inert Gas Systems
The FM200 System is the most famous gas-type fire suppression system in the world. However, the aerosol fire suppression system is slowly competing with FM200’s market space.
As mentioned before, the aerosol fire suppression system is cheaper by about 30% as compared with FM200. What is more, is that it requires no annual maintenance at all therefore, there is no annual recurring cost.
The table below shows the comparison between the aerosol fire suppression system and FM200.
Recognized Manufacturers and Suppliers
There are only a few leaders in aerosol fire suppression technology but differ in aerosol compound formulas. The following are the leaders in this technology with their corresponding certifications:
Located in the Netherlands, has certificates from BRL K23001, UL2775, ISO15779, EN15276, AS5062, AS4487, EU-Type Examination Certificate – Module B, NEN EN ISO9094, Small Craft – Fire Protection, ISO9001
Manufactured by Dynamit Nobel Defence GmbH located in Germany and Nupon Resources is their regional sales partner located in Malaysia. They are certified with ISO14001, ISO 9001, RINA, EN9100
Located in China is the only manufacturer that has aerosol fire suppression technology based on strontium nitrate chemicals. They have certificates and approvals from CE, GL, ROHS, IP67 and ISO series
Located in Cyprus, has listings and certifications from UL, ULC, LPCB, BSI, KIWA, etc.
Located in the US, has listings and approvals from UL, ULC, CE, ISO9001, Civil Defense and Qatar certificates.
Located in Malaysia, has certificates from CSIRO, VDS, BOMBA, BRITISH STANDARDS, and CEN.
Located in the Netherlands, has certificates from ABS, RINA, ISO, NFPA, TNO, CEN, KIWA, BSI, etc.
Located in Russia, has certificates from ISO9001 and some other Russian approvals.
Reputable Distributor of Aerosol Fire Suppression Products in the Philippines
There are few distributors of aerosol fire suppression products in the Philippines. Write us an email at email@example.com so we can assist you.
John Philip Espiloy is a researcher, writer, speaker, lecturer and an author of several scientific and engineering journals. He is now a full-time writer together with his partner.