GEN III Smart Proportioner – remote testing system

Regular testing and maintenance ensure a most service life and functional and failure-related safety of technical appliances. The identical applies to foam-based hearth extinguishing systems and the foam proportioners installed in them.
Up to now, such testing and maintenance have required the presence of personnel on-site. However, it will be easier and more cost-efficient for extinguishing system operators if this was potential in a fully computerized and remote-controlled method. For instance, this would additionally make common upkeep personnel journey to remotely positioned proportioners redundant. In addition, this would ensure that necessities by the manufacturer, requirements and units of rules are observed with none functional deviations and unsuitable time intervals.
The distant testing system within the ‘Smart Proportioner’ growth framework has been created just for this function. It is an advancement of the remote monitoring system.
Brief overview of the distant monitoring system
The distant monitoring system is used for proportioner monitoring in testing mode throughout upkeep and stay firefighting operations.
In the course of remote monitoring, the proportioning rate and different operating parameters are decided, recorded and forwarded to the system operator if necessary. Thus, the graceful performance and operational readiness of the system are monitored and ensured this manner.
A distant monitoring system consists of a management system, including an optionally available native display unit (HMI) if relevant, and sensor expertise. The sensor expertise includes, at the least, the chance to determine the water motor’s variety of revolutions and to determine the froth agent move rate. These values are used to calculate the proportioning fee. This determine is the core attribute during the operation and testing of a foam proportioner. Further sensor expertise is on the market on an optional basis.
The remote monitoring system helps the operating and repair personnel on-site. It can be suitable for remote monitoring of the foam proportioner.
However, it is a basic incontrovertible reality that personnel are all the time necessary to carry out the maintenance work or the proportioning rate testing on-site as the system plays a monitoring position only. It doesn’t actively interact with the functioning of the proportioner.
In the course of distant monitoring, the proportioning fee and other operating parameters are decided, displayed and forwarded. Images supplied by Author / Contributor
Evolution – from distant monitoring to remote testing
The question is the method to additional reduce the maintenance effort on foam proportioners.
The resolution lies within the distant testing system, the next step of the intelligent FireDos proportioners. The remote testing system permits monitoring of the proportioner and individual maintenance, including proportioning rate testing.
The condition of the proportioner may be checked without having to start up the fireplace extinguishing system. No personnel are required on-site. Proportioners in a distant place or that are solely not often inspected by personnel on-site can be checked without maintenance employees and associated expenses, similar to journey expenditure. In specific, growing the testing interval is feasible with out extra efforts. The instruction guide for FireDos proportioners requires common starting-up, using the service crank manually at the least. This is intended to prevent deposits inside the gear, impairing its ease of motion and thus conserving the proportioner’s functionality. The remote testing system can undertake these regular actions and test the proportioning price, growing the service life and useful security of the proportioner.
What is the design of a distant testing system?
The remote testing system is mostly primarily based upon the distant monitoring system. It is, nevertheless, particularly prolonged by means of actuators. This is as a result of they allow the completely impartial operation of the remote testing system; i.e., the proportioning rate of the proportioner is tested without activating the water pumps of the fire extinguishing system.
The core parts embody a central management system, with an elective HMI, sensor technology, electrical ball valve drives, an electrical drive for the proportioner and a bypass line past the water motor.
The connection of the electrical drive and the proportioner is designed in order that the electrical drive could have no interference with the proportioner’s functionality within the case of a hearth. This way, the advantages of the mechanical proportioning precept are preserved.
How does the distant testing system work, and the way can the proportioning fee be checked with out activating the water pumps?
If in ready-to-operate mode, the proportioner is always in the proportioning place. Upon initiation of an computerized testing course of, regardless of if after a defined time interval, upon request via a cloud solution or from the fireplace extinguishing system/a local operator, the proportioner is put into testing operation. Specifically, the control system puts the proportioner into testing operation utilizing an electrically actuated ball valve drive while the foam agent is not blended into the extinguishing water but returned to the froth agent tank. At the same time, it opens the electrically actuated ball valve in the bypass line past the water motor. Next, the electrical drive of the proportioner is activated, driving the complete proportioner at its start-up flow fee. The start-up move price is the bottom operating point of a proportioner to achieve its nominal proportioning price.
Due to the exterior electrical drive, the water motor works like a pump and generates a water move through the bypass from the water motor’s outlet to the water motor’s inlet. The operation causes no change of stress within the extinguishing water line. The hearth extinguishing system is due to this fact not influenced when the proportioner is examined.
As the extinguishing water circulate fee simulated by the exterior drive is also known because of the identified ratio of the water motor’s number of revolutions and the water circulate rate, simply the foam agent flow price have to be determined to permit the next calculation of the proportioning rate. This is completed by a volumetric flow meter between the proportioning pump’s outlet and the ball valve, which switches between returning and proportioning mode. This allows determination of the froth agent circulate price, both in testing mode and whereas proportioning in case of an alarm.
The proportioning rate is determined according to the formulation as required within the standards and rules EN 13565-1, NFPA 11, FM 4-12, and the Nordtest NT Fire 042 technique.
Foam agent flow rate [l/min]
(Extinguishing water move price x a hundred = proportioning price %+ foam agent flow rate) [l/min]
After completion of the testing process, the electric drive of the proportioner stops, the bypass line is closed, and the proportioner is returned to proportioning mode.
Sensor expertise installed as an additional option or inside the electric drive allows acquiring additional info and conclusions about the state and situation of the respective unit. It is checked, for instance, whether the ball valves are of their right positions or sufficient oil is in the crankshaft housing of the proportioning pump. In addition, the pressure values at the pump inlet/outlet and the strain on the water motor are recorded. Finally, measuring the complete system’s torque and the move rate inside the bypass line permits checking the overall condition of the proportioner.
The knowledge can be displayed domestically or through a cloud resolution. Controlling the upkeep operation can be possible through both interfaces.
What if there’s an alarm during a testing process?
An important question is: Does the proportioner work with none limitations and as traditional if there might be an alarm? The reply is: Yes!
The remote testing system is designed in such a means that extinguishing water can circulate through the water motor and begin it up at any time, even if the electrical drive is working at the similar time. In addition, a unique, totally automated and purely mechanical decoupling mechanism ensures that the electrical drive doesn’t intervene with the proportioner’s functioning and readiness to operate.
In case of an alarm, the ball valves in the bypass line and those for switching between returning and proportioning are immediately switched so that the proportioner is in proportioning mode for firefighting. Thus, the control system is put into alarm mode in this case. This alarm mode causes the disabling of all functions not necessary at that second and all ball valves to be set to their right place.
Therefore, in case of an alarm during testing operation, the ball valves change to their right position totally mechanically and the electric drive is switched off. Even if the electric drive remains to be working or coming to a stop, the extinguishing water can circulate through the water motor and drive the proportioning pump with out limitations. The alarm mode of the management system prevents re-activation of the electrical drive or any unintended ball valve switching.
What advantages does a distant testing system provide?
Compared with commonplace proportioners and those geared up with a remote monitoring system, a remote testing system offers numerous advantages. They function the following:
ν Proportione
Display view for testing operation of the FireDos remote testing system. Images provided by Author / Contributor
cian need to be on-site.
Regular proportioning fee testing: Regular proportioning rate testing ensures optimum functioning of the proportioner in case of a fireplace. If เครื่องมือที่ใช้ในการวัดความดัน is simply too low, the extinguishing success could be compromised. Overdosing causes the froth agent to be consumed quicker than intended, resulting in the premature ending of the foam operation.
Increasing useful and failure safety because of increased testing intervals: An elevated test interval causes the proportioner to be examined absolutely automatically at shorter intervals of time. This notably reduces the chance of a failure remaining undetected for an extended time period. In addition, extra frequent testing prevents the formation of deposits inside the water motor.
Early fault detection and diagnostics: Faults in the proportioner or components of the extinguishing system, instantly affecting the proportioner’s performance, can be recognized at an early stage of time. This consists of, for example, stress variations within the extinguishing water line or a jammed suction line.
Inclusion of all functions and advantages of the remote monitoring system: All features and advantages of the distant monitoring system are additionally present in the remote testing system, i.e. all related operating parameters are recorded and processed continuously and appropriately as nicely as documented in a log file. In addition, all information are displayed by a visualization.
Reduction of prices: Regular functional testing makes it possible to detect faults even earlier. This way, maintenance and repairs can happen earlier than any more serious harm occurs. The increased functionality and fault safety of the proportioner ensures that the service lifetime of the proportioners is maximized and the likelihood of a failure is minimized. As a end result, lowered service and operating workforce on-site cut back prices significantly, notably if the proportioner is located in a remote place. In addition, practical testing of the proportioner permits early identification, evaluation and possibly limiting a fault remotely. This makes service visits more efficient and therefore less expensive.
Summary and prospect
The distant monitoring system already supplies numerous advantages and helps reduce costs, but it cannot cut back the workforce required on-site.
The remote testing system is an answer for decreasing maintenance requirements. It is the subsequent evolution in the center of developing intelligent FireDos proportioners.
The remote testing system allows lowering the workforce required on-site to a minimal, along with shorter testing intervals and increased failure security. This will increase the proportioner’s service life.
If the proportioner is in a fault-free state, no further upkeep by personnel on-site is critical, other than an oil change. The oil change may be carried out by the operator’s personnel, too, simply and without any deeper knowledge of the operating principle of proportioners. If a service visit or restore ought to nonetheless turn into needed, remote monitoring and early fault detection will make the planning and completion of such work more efficient.
Like the remote monitoring system, the distant testing system is an optimum symbiosis of mechanical proportioners and an clever digital upgrade. Thus, the benefits from each know-how fields are combined with out compromising the performance of mechanical FireDos proportioners.
For extra information, go to www.firedos.com
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