When you have a sports hall, warehouse, factory, or other large open premises, standard smoke detectors are not up to the job. For more reliable smoke detection, you need a beam detection system, such as the Firebeam.
Your bog-standard battery smoke alarm at home is probably one which uses an Infrared red beam inside which is then distorted by the presence of smoke. What a beam detection system does is exactly the same, expect on a far larger scale.
The problem with a standard smoke or heat detector in such buildings is the height of the roof. By the time smoke or heat fills up enough to activate a detector on the ceiling, a fire could have already spread and caused extensive damage at floor level.
And not only is beam detection a more reliable option in such scenarios, but it’s also an economical solution too. The cost of installation can quickly spiral with normal detectors which, in certain circumstances, can be prohibited too.
Beam detectors are a real, viable option in many commercial environments.
How Do Beam Detectors Work?
Using reflective technology, beam-detecting systems comprise two parts which need to be installed on opposite sides of the building, directly facing each other. On one side you will have a reflective panel, and on the other, the optical beam head which emits the light, and then analyses the light received back from the reflector.
In normal circumstances, the Infrared light will fully return. However, when smoke is present between the two parts, the light is blocked by the smoke, and therefore the light returned is diminished. When the level reaches a pre-determined percentage, the fire alarm will be signalled to alert everyone to the potential threat.
The installation costs are greatly reduced because wiring is only required for one side, with one unit capable of covering up to 100 metres. Normally, this would require numerous detectors and reels of cabling.
The risk of false alarms is also decreased as dust and fumes react differently to Infrared wavelengths, which means the device can verify that real smoke is present. Even with anti-fog lenses and reflections, condensation isn’t a problem either, and nor is natural building movement which is addressed with motorised heads adjusting themselves.
And don’t worry as it can connect to your existing fire alarm system as an input device, which is ideal for scenarios where offices and warehouses and together in one unit.
So if you have a large area in which you need to provide fire detection, then make sure you install an optical beam detection system.