Trends In Fire Safety Architects Ought To Know
Some grounding in fire protection is essential for architects and construction crews. As buildings get more complex and ambitious, their need for fire protection grows more and more, too. Hiring a fire protection consultant can help you learn of and implement some of the latest and greatest features, but here we’re going to look at the trends you should be aware of so you can start incorporating a great level of fire protection in your latest project.
With the improvement of digital security, it’s only to be expected that fire sensors are becoming smarter, more reliable, and with a lower chance of false alarms. For instance, IPDACT systems are becoming much more common where as one they were only used in the largest of projects. These systems connect individual fire sensors to an alarm monitoring station. This station is operated to recognize and approve serious fire risks, automating the process of alerting the emergency services to limit the amount of damage a fire can cause.
Projects keep getting bigger, which is good for business but highlights some worrying risks as far as fire safety goes. For instance, you have to consider buildings that have riser shafts as a unique concern. Fires that start in these buildings can travel through these shafts at an alarming rate, making it much harder to stop internal spread. However, features like fire riser doors that stop fires from both getting inside the shafts and from spreading out of them for up to two hours.
One piece of sprinkler technology that is fast-growing and showing an improved effectiveness is the introduction of HI-FOG solutions. As opposed to traditional sprinklers, these devices use less water, making them more efficient, and convert it into water mist, which is better at displacing the oxygen that feeds fires, while also offering coverage for a greater surface area. The sprinklers also effectively control the temperature of a room where a fire has broken out, converting the water mist into steam that further blankets and suffocates the fire. There are a range of new sprinkler systems replacing traditional water based ones that can be both more effective and more cost-effective.
Besides the features that can be implemented in your projects, the software that allows architects and builders to better know the integrity of a building and how well it can withstand a fire is improving too. Software suites like Firetex Design Simulator 2.0 allows designers to test builds of all shapes, sizes, and materials. Fire modelling software can show not only how long the integrity of a building can last in fires of different types and temperatures. Some can even show the paths fires are most likely to take, allowing designers to target the “weak points” of a project with ease.
It’s worth keeping an eye on the fire protection side of the architecture and construction industry. You can make changes to existing projects much more easily and could even develop the knowledge to avoid the need to hire costly consultants in future.