Fire extinguishing systems
When there is a fire on a vessel, it must be localized and extinguished as soon as possible. This cannot always be done with the help of fire-extinguishing equipment or other firefighting means, therefore, the speed of delivery of the fire extinguishing agent to the hot spot plays an important role. Fire extinguishing systems help deliver the substance even without the participation of the crew. Such systems are determined and installed based on the volume and intended use and fire hazard of a certain facility.
The most common types of fire extinguishing systems
used on fleet are:
- Carbon dioxide fire extinguishing system;
- Foam fire extinguishing system;
- Powder-based extinguishing system.
Stationary CO2 fire extinguishing system
This system is based on the use of carbon dioxide (CO2). Carbon dioxide fire extinguishing has been used on ships for a long time and is most effective in the method of volumetric fire extinguishing, when the facility is made airproof. Carbon dioxide is a colorless and odorless gas and at low concentrations (about 5%) is harmless to the crew. The principle of operation is based on the expansion of carbon dioxide after leaving the cylinder. Thus, carbon dioxide, which is 1.5 times heavier than air, sinks onto the fire site, covers it and prevents oxygen inflow.
The advantage of using a carbon dioxide fire extinguishing system is that it easily penetrates into hard-to-reach places in the engine room, holds, ship's storerooms and other technical compartments on the ship. It does not conduct electricity and does not react with metals. It is preferable to use carbon dioxide when it is necessary to keep the equipment of the room intact. It is stored in 40-liter cylinders (25 kg of carbon dioxide) in groups of 8-16 in an upright position in places far from living quarters.
Foam fire extinguishing system
The foam extinguishing system is used to extinguish fires in compartments for flammable substances, in pumping or filling compartments. Foam of low, medium and high expansion is used as a substance for extinguishing fires. The multiplicity of foam is calculated by the ratio of the amount of used foaming agent to water. For example, in low expansion foam the amount of foam concentrate to water is 1 to 10. In medium - 1 to 50 and 150; In high - 1 in 1000. This system should not be used to extinguish premises with chemicals that emit oxygen or react with water.
Powder fire extinguishing system
Powder fire extinguishing systems are most often used on chemical or gas carriers. It can effectively extinguish various flammable liquids, liquefied gas, alkali metals, as well as vegetable oils, rubber, coal or wood. In powder fire extinguishing systems on vessels, only foam compatible powders are used.