GEN III Smart Proportioner – distant testing system

Regular testing and maintenance guarantee a most service life and useful and failure-related safety of technical home equipment. The same applies to foam-based hearth extinguishing systems and the froth proportioners installed in them.
Up to now, such testing and maintenance have required the presence of personnel on-site. However, it might be easier and extra cost-efficient for extinguishing system operators if this was potential in a completely automated and remote-controlled method. For example, this would also make regular maintenance personnel journey to remotely situated proportioners redundant. In addition, this may make certain that necessities by the producer, standards and units of rules are observed without any useful deviations and unsuitable time intervals.
The remote testing system within the ‘Smart Proportioner’ growth framework has been created just for this objective. It is an advancement of the remote monitoring system.
Brief overview of the distant monitoring system

The remote monitoring system is used for proportioner monitoring in testing mode during upkeep and live firefighting operations.
In the course of remote monitoring, the proportioning rate and different working parameters are determined, recorded and forwarded to the system operator if needed. Thus, the sleek functionality and operational readiness of the system are monitored and ensured this manner.
A remote monitoring system consists of a management system, together with an elective native display unit (HMI) if applicable, and sensor know-how. The sensor technology includes, at least, the possibility to determine the water motor’s number of revolutions and to discover out the froth agent circulate fee. These values are used to calculate the proportioning price. This figure is the core attribute during the operation and testing of a foam proportioner. Further sensor technology is on the market on an elective foundation.
The remote monitoring system supports the operating and service personnel on-site. It can be appropriate for distant monitoring of the foam proportioner.
However, it is a primary fact that personnel are all the time needed to carry out the upkeep work or the proportioning rate testing on-site as the system plays a monitoring function solely. It does not actively work together with the functioning of the proportioner.
In the course of remote monitoring, the proportioning fee and different working parameters are decided, displayed and forwarded. Images supplied by Author / Contributor

Evolution – from distant monitoring to remote testing

The question is tips on how to additional reduce the upkeep effort on foam proportioners.
The resolution lies in the distant testing system, the subsequent step of the intelligent FireDos proportioners. The remote testing system permits monitoring of the proportioner and individual maintenance, including proportioning price 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 remote place or which would possibly be only not often inspected by personnel on-site may be checked without maintenance workers and associated bills, such as journey expenditure. In specific, increasing the testing interval is feasible without extra efforts. The instruction handbook for FireDos proportioners requires regular starting-up, using the service crank manually at least. This is intended to prevent deposits contained in the gear, impairing its ease of movement and thus conserving the proportioner’s functionality. The distant testing system can undertake these common actions and check the proportioning rate, growing the service life and practical security of the proportioner.
What is the design of a distant testing system?

The remote testing system is mostly based upon the distant monitoring system. It is, nevertheless, significantly extended by the use of actuators. This is as a outcome of they enable the utterly independent operation of the remote testing system; i.e., the proportioning price of the proportioner is examined with out activating the water pumps of the fireplace extinguishing system.
The core elements include a central control system, with an optionally available HMI, sensor technology, electrical ball valve drives, an electrical drive for the proportioner and a bypass line previous the water motor.
The connection of the electrical drive and the proportioner is designed in order that the electrical drive may have no interference with the proportioner’s performance in the case of a hearth. This means, some nice advantages of the mechanical proportioning precept are preserved.
How does the distant testing system work, and how can the proportioning price be checked without activating the water pumps?

If in ready-to-operate mode, the proportioner is always within the proportioning position. Upon initiation of an automatic testing process, irrespective of if after an outlined time interval, upon request via a cloud answer or from the hearth extinguishing system/a local operator, the proportioner is put into testing operation. Specifically, the control system puts the proportioner into testing operation using an electrically actuated ball valve drive while the froth agent isn’t combined into the extinguishing water but returned to the froth agent tank. At the same time, it opens the electrically actuated ball valve within the bypass line previous the water motor. Next, the electrical drive of the proportioner is activated, driving the complete proportioner at its start-up circulate rate. The start-up circulate rate is the bottom working point of a proportioner to succeed in its nominal proportioning rate.
Due to the external electrical drive, the water motor works like a pump and generates a water flow by way of the bypass from the water motor’s outlet to the water motor’s inlet. The operation causes no change of strain within the extinguishing water line. The hearth extinguishing system is therefore not influenced when the proportioner is tested.
As the extinguishing water flow rate simulated by the exterior drive can additionally be identified due to the recognized ratio of the water motor’s number of revolutions and the water flow fee, just the foam agent flow price have to be determined to allow the subsequent calculation of the proportioning price. This is done by a volumetric circulate 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 flow fee, each in testing mode and while proportioning in case of an alarm.
The proportioning price is decided according to the formulation as required in the requirements and laws EN 13565-1, NFPA eleven, FM 4-12, and the Nordtest NT Fire 042 methodology.
Foam agent circulate rate [l/min]

(Extinguishing water move rate x 100 = proportioning price %+ foam agent flow rate) [l/min]

After completion of the testing course of, the electrical drive of the proportioner stops, the bypass line is closed, and the proportioner is returned to proportioning mode.
Sensor expertise put in as a further choice or inside the electric drive permits obtaining further info and conclusions concerning the state and situation of the respective unit. It is checked, for instance, whether or not the ball valves are in their appropriate positions or adequate oil is in the crankshaft housing of the proportioning pump. In addition, the stress values at the pump inlet/outlet and the strain at the water motor are recorded. Finally, measuring the complete system’s torque and the flow price contained in the bypass line permits checking the overall condition of the proportioner.
The data could be displayed regionally or by way of a cloud answer. Controlling the maintenance operation is also attainable through each interfaces.
What if there is an alarm throughout a testing process?

An essential query is: Does the proportioner work without any limitations and as ordinary if there’s an alarm? The reply is: Yes!

The remote testing system is designed in such a means that extinguishing water can move via 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 automatic and purely mechanical decoupling mechanism ensures that the electrical drive does not intervene with the proportioner’s functioning and readiness to operate.
In case of an alarm, the ball valves within the bypass line and those for switching between returning and proportioning are instantly 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 features not necessary at that moment and all ball valves to be set to their appropriate place.
Therefore, in ไดอะแฟรม ซีล of an alarm throughout testing operation, the ball valves switch to their right position totally routinely and the electrical drive is switched off. Even if the electrical drive is still working or coming to a stop, the extinguishing water can circulate via the water motor and drive the proportioning pump without limitations. The alarm mode of the control system prevents re-activation of the electrical drive or any unintended ball valve switching.
What เพรสเชอร์เกจ does a distant testing system provide?

Compared with standard proportioners and people geared up with a distant monitoring system, a remote testing system offers various advantages. They function the next:
ν Proportione

Display view for testing operation of the FireDos distant testing system. Images supplied by Author / Contributor

cian need to be on-site.
Regular proportioning rate testing: Regular proportioning fee testing ensures optimum functioning of the proportioner in case of a hearth. If the proportioning rate is simply too low, the extinguishing success may be compromised. Overdosing causes the foam agent to be consumed sooner than supposed, resulting in the premature ending of the foam operation.
Increasing functional and failure safety as a outcome of increased testing intervals: An increased take a look at interval causes the proportioner to be tested absolutely mechanically at shorter intervals of time. This notably reduces the risk of a failure remaining undetected for a longer time frame. In addition, extra frequent testing prevents the formation of deposits inside the water motor.
Early fault detection and diagnostics: Faults in the proportioner or parts of the extinguishing system, immediately affecting the proportioner’s performance, could be recognized at an early stage of time. This consists of, for example, stress variations in the extinguishing water line or a jammed suction line.
Inclusion of all features and advantages of the remote monitoring system: All features and advantages of the remote monitoring system are additionally present in the distant testing system, i.e. all relevant working parameters are recorded and processed repeatedly and correctly as well 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 means, maintenance and repairs can take place earlier than any more critical damage occurs. The elevated functionality and fault security of the proportioner ensures that the service lifetime of the proportioners is maximized and the probability of a failure is minimized. As a result, lowered service and operating workforce on-site cut back costs considerably, significantly if the proportioner is located in a remote place. In addition, functional testing of the proportioner permits early identification, analysis and presumably limiting a fault remotely. This makes service visits more efficient and therefore cheaper.
Summary and prospect

The distant monitoring system already provides varied benefits and helps cut back prices, however it cannot reduce the workforce required on-site.
The distant testing system is a solution for decreasing upkeep necessities. It is the next evolution in the middle of creating intelligent FireDos proportioners.
The remote testing system allows reducing the workforce required on-site to a minimum, together with shorter testing intervals and elevated failure safety. This will increase the proportioner’s service life.
If the proportioner is in a fault-free state, no additional upkeep by personnel on-site is critical, aside from an oil change. The oil change could be carried out by the operator’s personnel, too, easily and with none deeper data of the operating precept of proportioners. If a service visit or restore should still become essential, distant monitoring and early fault detection will make the planning and completion of such work more environment friendly.
Like the remote monitoring system, the remote testing system is an optimum symbiosis of mechanical proportioners and an intelligent electronic improve. Thus, the advantages from both technology fields are mixed with out compromising the performance of mechanical FireDos proportioners.
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