Hochiki protects research centre against fire risk

Hochiki, fire alarm, fire detection
Hochiki devices feature prominently in the new fire system for the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics.

Replacing the 10-year-old fire-alarm and detection system at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, a research institute of the University of Oxford, using Hochiki devices and Kentec control panels has complied with the university’s safety office for open-protocol systems and commonality of equipment. This requirement enables the university to have a central maintenance contract for the whole of the estate.

The new installation also solves the problem of the dwindling availability of spares and very significant costs involved with maintenance and attendance issues due to the reliance of a particular manufacturer because the system was closed protocol.

Pyrotec Services renewed all existing devices and control panels, retained as much wiring as possible, provided loop-powered sounders, enhanced detection coverage and improved access for maintenance in certain areas — especially in ceiling voids and lift shafts.

The project involved a 12-loop 96-zone control panel and associated devices using existing cabling. There are about a thousand devices, including nearly 500 analogue multi-sensors. These multi-sensors have a variable-temperature heat element and a rate-of-rise heat element. Both elements can be controlled from the control panel, so either or both can be active in making the fire decision.

The diversity of work at the centre means it is important to have the option of being able to switch between detection modes on a daily basis, providing versatility without compromising safety.

To avoid maintenance work in the lift shaft involving standing or riding on a lift car, an Hochiki Firelink aspirating system is installed outside the shaft with a short run of pipe into the shaft.

For more information on this story, click here: Sept 2012, 133
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