New Los Angeles Federal Courthouse kept safe with FFE’s beam smoke detectors

Four Fireray 5000 detectors installed in new state-of-the-art building

To ensure optimum fire detection in its large atrium, the impressive new Los Angeles Federal Courthouse has installed four Fireray beam smoke detectors from FFE. The units were commissioned and installed by SimplexGrinnell.

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“Because the atrium is so high, conventional smoke detectors were not suitable for this installation,” commented Managing Director Mark Osborne. “Our Fireray 5000 auto-aligning, reflective smoke detectors were selected instead as they are ideal for this kind of large interior, providing extensive coverage at minimal cost.”

Fireray 5000 beam detectors work by transmitting a beam of invisible infrared light across the building space to be protected. A receiver detects and measures the light and can recognise smoke interference anywhere along the beam path, triggering the alarm signal when the pre-determined threshold is reached.

One of the deciding factors in Fireray 5000 detectors being specified for this application is the ‘low level controller’ feature, which means maintenance and testing can be carried out via the control room. “As the units are situated high up, physically accessing them regularly is exorbitantly expensive and impractical, so remote access is essential,” says SimplexGrinnell’s Construction Manager Sharon Brown.

Another important factor in any new-build project is building movement. All new buildings need to ‘settle’, and for beam detectors, which rely on precision laser alignment at opposite ends of the building, any movement can mean the beams become unaligned. The Fireray 5000 compensates for this through its ‘auto-alignment’ feature, ensuring beams remain aligned during building movement, without causing nuisance alarms or requiring a technician.

The new 10 storey, 633,000-square-foot courthouse, which is situated in downtown Los Angeles, contains 24 courtrooms and 32 judges’ chambers and has sustainable features such as a serrated facade that maximizes views yet also reduces solar heat gain by nearly 50 percent.

With over half a million optical beam detectors installed worldwide, Fireray is the first choice for installers and engineers looking for smoke detection in large open areas. With its modern design aesthetic and minimal footprint, the Fireray is popular with architects and facilities managers who care about preserving the original design of buildings.

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FFE’s Talentum Flame Detectors Nominated for Tomorrow’s FM Award

FFE’s Talentum UV/Dual IR flame detectors have been nominated for the Tomorrow’s FM Awards 2017.

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Talentum detectors are used in a huge array of sensitive or dangerous environments, including recycling facilities, textile plants, petrochemical plants and aircraft hangars. FFE has even adapted it to protect the Bloodhound supersonic car.

Unique benefits of Talentum UV/Dual IR include:
• An ability to detect fires in seconds, even before smoke is produced (or from smokeless fires) from sources as wide-ranging as paper, plastic, rubber, textiles, metals and foam, ensuring early fires are kept under control.
• Unlike conventional flame detectors which concentrate on a single area of the spectrum, Talentum’s Broadspectrum® technology detects from non-visible ultraviolet (UV) to infrared (IR), identifying the characteristics of the flames themselves.
• They are immune from the effects of sunlight, artificial light, arc welding, electrical sparks or UV lamps.

These features combine to make the Talentum a flame detector with excellent all‐round performance, sensitive to all fuel types, immune from false readings – and available at a lower cost per unit than standard flame units.

“We’re delighted to be nominated for this award,” said FFE’s Managing Director Mark Osborne. “Talentum really is unique, and the Bloodhound project is just one example of its versatility. We took an industrial product and developed it to work in what is, effectively, a jet fighter/racing car/spaceship combined. Rolls Royce and Jaguar both have their engines in the car – and have their brand names printed on it – so Talentum has been trusted to not only protect Bloodhound, but the integrity of these other brands as well. No other flame detector exists that can do this.”

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FFE bringing the latest in smoke and flame detection to Intersec

FFE is bringing its Fireray wide-area smoke detection and Talentum flame detection technology to Intersec in Dubai in January 2017. The company will be located in the UK Pavilion (Booth 4-D32), where industry experts will be on hand to answer any questions you may have.

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Held between 22-24 January, 2017 at the Dubai World Trade Centre, Intersec is the world’s leading trade fair for security, safety and fire protection.

With over half a million optical beam detectors installed worldwide, Fireray is the first choice for installers and engineers looking for smoke detection in large open areas. With its modern design aesthetic and minimal footprint, the Fireray is popular with architects and facilities managers who care about preserving the original design of buildings.

Visitors will also get to see Talentum flame detectors, the fastest fire detection system in the world. Talentum flame detectors are built with FFE Broadspectrum® technology, which recognises a broad range of infra-red radiation from flames of any fuel source, through smoke, steam, dust and glass. They provide excellent protection for waste recycling sites where a mixture of materials can burn. High value equipment exposed to flammable environments, such as aircraft in hangars and hazardous chemical process equipment, are also safer when protected by Talentum’s fast flame detection. ATEX approved, explosion proof and intrinsically safe models are available.

“Our technology is relied on to protect some of the most iconic buildings in the world, from the White House and Buckingham Palace to Dubai Airport and the Al-Aqsa Mosque, as well as countless industrial installations worldwide,” stated FFE’s Managing Director Mark Osborne. “Talentum flame detectors have also been selected to protect the Bloodhound supersonic car, set to break the world land-speed record in the coming years.”

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FFE Appoints Fiona Chan as Head of Marketing

FFE has appointed Fiona Chan as its new Head of Marketing. Prior to joining FFE she was a Product Manager at fellow Halma company Keeler Limited, a leading manufacturer of medical diagnostic equipment.

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Fiona originally joined the Halma Graduate Development Programme in 2013 and achieved significant success in placements with a number of Halma companies in China and the USA, working on market research and product development projects. She also had an assignment as Marketing Manager at Halma elevator safety specialist Avire as part of the programme.

“Fiona’s rise up the ranks in Halma has been meteoric and we’re delighted to have her join us as Head of Marketing. She is an outstanding candidate and I’m sure she will make an instant impact,” commented FFE’s Managing Director Mark Osborne.

Fiona has a B.A., MEng. and PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Cambridge. Born and raised in Hong Kong, she moved to the UK when she was a teenager. As well as English and Cantonese, Fiona speaks fluent Mandarin and conversational Japanese.

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Professional Sales Representatives (PSR) partners with FFE to extend fire safety portfolio for Western US region

FFE is pleased to announce the appointment of Professional Sales Representatives, LLC (PSR) as its new partner for the Western US region. PSR will be representing FFE’s two main product ranges: Fireray beam smoke detectors and Talentum flame detectors.

Fireray beam detectors are specifically designed to provide protection in large buildings with high ceilings, where conventional point smoke detectors are ineffective. With their modern design and minimal footprint, they are used in applications as varied as airports, hotels, sports stadiums, conference centers, warehouses, historic buildings and places of worship.

Talentum flame detectors are used in sensitive or dangerous environments to detect fires even before smoke is produced, or where smokeless fires may occur. By watching for and recognizing the non-visible ultraviolet (UV) and infrared (IR) signatures of flames, Talentum does not need smoke to detect a fire. Applications include petrochemical facilities, refineries, aircraft hangars, power plants, tunnels and waste handling facilities.

“We’re delighted to have partnered up with FFE to bring their extensive range of fire safety products to our customers in the western United States,” comments PSR’s VP of Sales, Andy Applegate. “By adding Fireray and Talentum to our portfolio we have truly broadened and deepened our product offering.”

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Cambridge International Airport’s spray-painting hangar protected by FFE’s Talentum flame detectors

To protect workers during aircraft spray-painting, Cambridge International Airport has installed nine Talentum flame detectors and one Fireray beam detector from FFE.

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“Because of the explosive nature of the paint used in the hangar, explosion-proof flame detectors were necessary,” commented Brian Myall, Fire Safety Officer for Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group, the company which manages the airport. “Our chosen installer specified Talentum UV/IR2 flame detectors and we are very impressed by their performance and reliability so far.”

In addition to the hazardous area of the hangar, a Fireray 5000 beam smoke detector is installed at ceiling level for general smoke detection.

Flame detectors are ideally suited to this type of installation as they detect almost all types of flickering flames. This is especially important in this application, where flames can originate from the paint and many other sources, including plastics, composites and even metals. By utilising infra-red (IR) sensing, they can also identify flames through dust, steam or smoke and are immune to the effects of wind or draughts.

The Talentum UV/IR2 also gives the highest immunity to false flame sources, with internal self-test sources that check the detector’s operation when remotely instructed. The maximum ambient temperature is normally 55°C or 85°C for the higher temperature specification detectors.

For general smoke detection in large indoor spaces with high ceilings, like aircraft hangars, conventional point smoke detectors are not suitable as they can only be used at heights of up to 10.5 metres. Beam smoke detectors on the other hand can be used up to 40 metres. Wall-mounted, they transmit a beam of invisible infrared light across the building space to be protected and a receiver detects and measures the light and can recognise smoke interference anywhere along the beam path.

All types of aircraft, both civilian and military are painted at the site, which is capable of accommodating planes as large as a Boeing 747. The FFE units were installed by EFire of Norfolk.

Commenting on the installation, FFE’s Managing Director Mark Osborne said, “This is yet another example of the wide range of applications where our products can be used. We are delighted to have been selected to protect Cambridge International Airport in this way.”

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A step beyond – specialist fire detection for explosive environments

Within the fire industry, specialist detection products exist to serve specific applications. Specialist solutions include aspirating detection for clean rooms/servers, or an optical beam detector for warehouses and other large internal areas. However, as technology and our industry develop, the risks that we are exposed to are constantly evolving, along with our desire for improved safety standards.

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The most difficult environments from a safety perspective are those that are potentially explosive. This covers all sorts of industrial processes, including but not limited to petrochemicals, flourmills, fine chemicals, spray booths, electronics manufacture, waste handling etc. Each application has a different balance of features vs. cost – knowing what is required from your equipment is a vital step in obtaining suitable protection. What follows is an introduction to some of the main issues.

Explosive Environments
In such applications, the risk of fire is significantly increased, in terms of both likelihood of a fire, and the severity of the consequences. The environments can also be very hostile to the fire detector, often being corrosive or very dusty/dirty that may interfere with the proper function of the unit. Indeed, some environments are so dangerous that the fire detection device itself can pose a significant explosive risk. Virtually all modern detectors are electrical devices – shorts within the circuit may create sparks that could detonate the wider environment. As a result, units have to have special safety precautions built into the unit so no risk is posed to the protected area. These special precautions can be embodied in many different ways (see the ATEX directive), but in the marketplace, two solutions are used:

• Flameproof enclosures – a sealed environment that the detector sits in. Should the unit short-circuit creating an explosion, then the unit can retain all the energy of that explosion and not ignite the external environment.
• Intrinsic safety – safe by circuit design, intrinsically safe detectors limit the potential energy of an electrical device so that it cannot pose an ignition risk. Read more…

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FFE Launches Explosion Proof Optical Beam Smoke Detectors in Middle East

Fireray 3000 Exd also features light cancellation technology

Fire detection company FFE is launching its new ATEX certified, explosion proof Fireray 3000 Exd optical beam smoke detector in the Middle East and Asia.

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Designed to protect wide areas (up to 1,500m2) against smoking fires in potentially explosive environments, it is ideal for use in large enclosures within oil rigs, refineries, ordnance stores and similar premises, providing an early warning of smouldering or highly smoke-generative fires which may not be picked up by flame detectors.

Its intuitive user interface means the Fireray 3000 Exd is extremely easy to install and use, even by a single operator. Its laser-assisted alignment method, which is activated at the controller, combined with alignment LEDs, offers visual feedback while setting up.

A unique feature of the Fireray 3000 Exd is Light Cancellation Technology (LCT). This works by actively monitoring ambient light levels on the detector and ‘subtracting’ them away from the ‘real’ signal. This allows the detector to work under the most difficult light conditions, including sunlight, sodium lamps and fluorescent lighting.

The system comprises an infrared transmitter and a receiver and a separate, wall-mounted control unit installed in a safe area, allowing adjustment and testing from a convenient non-hazardous location. The transmitter head emits a narrow beam of infra-red (IR) light to the receiver head – if smoke crosses the beam it obscures the IR beam, causing the signal strength at the receiver to drop. If the signal strength falls below a pre-set level it results in an alarm condition.

Key features:
• ATEX approved and Exd certified receiver and transmitter
• Two detectors per system controller
• Separate fire and fault relays per detector
• 10-100m range (1,500 m2)
• Laser and LEDs for rapid alignment
• Low level control unit with LCD display (for safe area)
• Programmable sensitivity and fire/fault delay
• Contamination compensation
• Patented and award-winning Light Cancellation Technology
• Easy to install and use

“We are excited to be bringing this technology to market,” commented FFE’s Managing Director Mark Osborne. “It’s a major addition to our Fireray range”.

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FFE is bringing Bloodhound to FIREX!

The supersonic Bloodhound car is coming to FIREX in June! Fire safety specialist FFE will have a full-sized replica of the car on its booth at FIREX (stand E180). Why? Because Bloodhound uses FFE’s Talentum UV/Dual IR flame detectors.

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The jet-powered Bloodhound will first attempt to break the existing land speed record of 763 mph and, once that’s accomplished, it aims to break the 1,000 mph barrier in the coming years. As can be expected, safety is paramount so the company is delighted that its Talentum flame detectors have been selected for the car.

“Bloodhound is a truly prestigious and ambitious British engineering project and we are delighted that our Talentum flame detection products have been selected as part of the vitally important safety system,” comments FFE’s Managing Director Mark Osborne. “We will be closely following the Bloodhound team’s progress as they attempt to break 1,000mph.”

By utilising infra-red (IR) sensing, Talentum UV/Dual detectors can detect visible and invisible flames from virtually any source, irrespective of any dust, steam or smoke present, and are immune to the effects of wind or draughts. They also give the highest immunity to false flame sources.

Also on display at FIREX will be FFE’s Fireray 5000 motorised, auto-aligning optical beam smoke detector, which is ideally suited to large interiors with high ceilings, enabling coverage of a large area at minimal cost. The Fireray 5000 combines an infrared transmitter and receiver in the same unit and operates by projecting a well-defined beam to a reflective prism, which returns the beam to the receiver for analysis.

Last but not least, the company will also be showing its soon-to-be-launched explosion-proof Fireray 3000 Exd optical beam smoke detector. Designed for use in potentially explosive atmospheres, such as large enclosures in oil rigs, refineries and ordnance stores, it provides an early warning of smouldering or strongly smoke-generating fires in hazardous areas.

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FFE Appoints Jacob Andelin as Technical Director

Fire detection company FFE has appointed Jacob Andelin as its new Technical Director. Jacob was promoted from acting head of R&D, a position he held for the last six months. Prior to that he was a senior engineer, a position he held since joining FFE in 2006.

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Prior to joining FFE he worked as a design engineer in the printing and automotive industries. Jacob has a degree in electrical and electronic engineering from Imperial College London.

“Jacob did an outstanding job in his time as head of R&D and, with his promotion to Technical Director, FFE is well placed to embark on an ambitious development programme,” commented FFE’s Managing Director Mark Osborne.

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