GEN III Smart Proportioner – remote testing system

Regular testing and maintenance guarantee a most service life and functional and failure-related safety of technical home equipment. The similar applies to foam-based hearth extinguishing methods and the froth proportioners put in in them.
Up to now, such testing and upkeep have required the presence of personnel on-site. However, it will be easier and more cost-efficient for extinguishing system operators if this was possible in a totally automatic and remote-controlled method. For instance, this is ready to additionally make regular upkeep personnel travel to remotely situated proportioners redundant. In addition, this is in a position to make sure that requirements by the manufacturer, requirements and sets of laws are observed with none useful deviations and unsuitable time intervals.
The distant testing system within the ‘Smart Proportioner’ growth framework has been created only for this purpose. It is an development of the distant monitoring system.
Brief overview of the remote monitoring system
The distant monitoring system is used for proportioner monitoring in testing mode throughout maintenance and reside firefighting operations.
In the course of distant monitoring, the proportioning rate and different operating parameters are determined, recorded and forwarded to the system operator if needed. Thus, the smooth functionality and operational readiness of the system are monitored and ensured this fashion.
A distant monitoring system consists of a management system, together with an optionally available native show unit (HMI) if applicable, and sensor expertise. The sensor expertise contains, at the least, the possibility to determine the water motor’s variety of revolutions and to discover out the froth agent move fee. These values are used to calculate the proportioning rate. This determine is the core characteristic during the operation and testing of a foam proportioner. Further sensor expertise is out there on an elective basis.
The remote monitoring system helps the operating and service personnel on-site. It can be suitable for remote monitoring of the froth proportioner.
However, it is a basic incontrovertible reality that personnel are all the time needed to hold out the maintenance work or the proportioning rate testing on-site because the system performs a monitoring role only. It does not actively interact with the functioning of the proportioner.
In the course of distant monitoring, the proportioning rate and other operating parameters are determined, displayed and forwarded. Images provided by Author / Contributor
Evolution – from remote monitoring to distant testing
The question is how to further minimize the maintenance effort on foam proportioners.
The resolution lies in the distant testing system, the subsequent step of the clever FireDos proportioners. The distant testing system permits monitoring of the proportioner and individual upkeep, including proportioning fee testing.
The condition of the proportioner could be checked with out having to begin out up the fire extinguishing system. No personnel are required on-site. Proportioners in a remote place or which are only rarely inspected by personnel on-site may be checked with out upkeep staff and associated bills, corresponding to travel expenditure. In specific, increasing the testing interval is feasible with out additional efforts. The instruction handbook for FireDos proportioners requires regular starting-up, utilizing the service crank manually as a minimum. This is meant to stop deposits contained in the gear, impairing its ease of motion and thus conserving the proportioner’s functionality. The remote testing system can undertake these regular movements and test the proportioning rate, increasing the service life and practical safety of the proportioner.
What is the design of a remote testing system?
The remote testing system is usually based mostly upon the distant monitoring system. It is, nonetheless, particularly extended by the use of actuators. This is as a outcome of they enable the utterly unbiased operation of the distant testing system; i.e., the proportioning fee of the proportioner is tested without activating the water pumps of the fire extinguishing system.
The core components embrace a central control system, with an elective HMI, sensor expertise, 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 so that the electrical drive may have no interference with the proportioner’s performance in the case of a hearth. This method, some great advantages of the mechanical proportioning precept are preserved.
How does the remote testing system work, and the way can the proportioning rate be checked with out activating the water pumps?
If in ready-to-operate mode, the proportioner is all the time within the proportioning place. Upon initiation of an automated testing course of, no matter if after a defined time interval, upon request via a cloud solution or from the hearth extinguishing system/a local operator, the proportioner is put into testing operation. Specifically, the management system places the proportioner into testing operation utilizing an electrically actuated ball valve drive whereas the foam agent isn’t mixed into the extinguishing water but returned to the froth agent tank. At the identical time, it opens the electrically actuated ball valve within the bypass line past the water motor. Next, the electric drive of the proportioner is activated, driving the whole proportioner at its start-up move rate. The start-up circulate price is the bottom working level of a proportioner to reach its nominal proportioning rate.
Due to the exterior electrical drive, the water motor works like a pump and generates a water circulate by way of 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 fireplace extinguishing system is subsequently not influenced when the proportioner is tested.
As the extinguishing water circulate fee simulated by the external drive is also recognized as a outcome of identified ratio of the water motor’s number of revolutions and the water circulate rate, simply the foam agent flow fee have to be decided to allow the subsequent calculation of the proportioning price. This is finished by a volumetric circulate meter between the proportioning pump’s outlet and the ball valve, which switches between returning and proportioning mode. This allows dedication of the froth agent move rate, each in testing mode and whereas proportioning in case of an alarm.
The proportioning price is determined in accordance with the formulation as required in the standards and regulations EN 13565-1, NFPA 11, FM 4-12, and the Nordtest NT Fire 042 method.
Foam agent circulate rate [l/min]
(Extinguishing water circulate rate x 100 = proportioning rate %+ 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 know-how put in as a further choice or inside the electric drive allows obtaining additional info and conclusions about the state and condition of the respective unit. It is checked, for instance, whether the ball valves are in their right positions or adequate oil is in the crankshaft housing of the proportioning pump. In addition, the pressure values on the pump inlet/outlet and the pressure at the water motor are recorded. Finally, measuring the complete system’s torque and the move rate inside the bypass line permits checking the general situation of the proportioner.
The information could be displayed regionally or through a cloud answer. Controlling the upkeep operation can be possible by way of both interfaces.
What if there’s an alarm during a testing process?
An essential query is: Does the proportioner work without any limitations and as traditional if there’s an alarm? The answer is: Yes!
The remote testing system is designed in such a means that extinguishing water can circulate by way of the water motor and start it up at any time, even when the electrical drive is working on the identical 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 function.
In case of an alarm, the ball valves within the bypass line and people for switching between returning and proportioning are immediately switched in order that the proportioner is in proportioning mode for firefighting. Thus, the management system is put into alarm mode on 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 switch to their appropriate place absolutely automatically and the electric drive is switched off. Even if the electric drive continues to be operating or coming to a stop, the extinguishing water can flow via the water motor and drive the proportioning pump with out limitations. The alarm mode of the control system prevents re-activation of the electric drive or any unintended ball valve switching.
What advantages does a distant testing system provide?
Compared with standard proportioners and those geared up with a remote monitoring system, a distant testing system supplies various benefits. They function the next:
ν Proportione
Display view for testing operation of the FireDos distant testing system. Images provided by Author / Contributor
cian should be on-site.
Regular proportioning rate testing: Regular proportioning price testing ensures optimum functioning of the proportioner in case of a fire. If เกจแรงดัน is merely too low, the extinguishing success may be compromised. Overdosing causes the foam agent to be consumed quicker than intended, leading to the premature ending of the froth operation.
Increasing practical and failure security because of elevated testing intervals: An increased check interval causes the proportioner to be examined totally routinely at shorter intervals of time. This notably reduces the risk of a failure remaining undetected for an extended period of time. In addition, extra frequent testing prevents the formation of deposits inside the water motor.
Early fault detection and diagnostics: Faults within the proportioner or components of the extinguishing system, instantly affecting the proportioner’s functionality, may be identified at an early stage of time. This includes, for instance, strain variations within the extinguishing water line or a jammed suction line.
Inclusion of all features and advantages of the distant monitoring system: All functions and advantages of the distant monitoring system are also present within the remote testing system, i.e. all related operating parameters are recorded and processed repeatedly and appropriately as well as documented in a log file. In addition, all information are displayed by a visualization.
Reduction of costs: Regular useful testing makes it possible to detect faults even earlier. This method, upkeep and repairs can happen before any more severe injury happens. The increased performance and fault security of the proportioner ensures that the service lifetime of the proportioners is maximized and the likelihood of a failure is minimized. As a outcome, lowered service and working workforce on-site cut back prices significantly, significantly if the proportioner is situated in a remote place. In addition, functional testing of the proportioner allows early identification, evaluation and presumably limiting a fault remotely. This makes service visits extra environment friendly and due to this fact less expensive.
Summary and prospect
The remote monitoring system already provides numerous benefits and helps scale back prices, but it can not cut back the workforce required on-site.
The distant testing system is a solution for decreasing upkeep necessities. It is the subsequent evolution in the course of growing clever FireDos proportioners.
The remote testing system allows reducing the workforce required on-site to a minimal, together with shorter testing intervals and elevated failure safety. This increases the proportioner’s service life.
If the proportioner is in a fault-free state, no further maintenance by personnel on-site is necessary, other than an oil change. The oil change can be carried out by the operator’s personnel, too, simply and with none deeper information of the working principle of proportioners. If a service go to or repair should still become needed, distant monitoring and early fault detection will make the planning and completion of such work extra environment friendly.
Like the distant monitoring system, the distant testing system is an optimum symbiosis of mechanical proportioners and an intelligent electronic upgrade. Thus, the advantages from both expertise fields are combined with out compromising the functionality of mechanical FireDos proportioners.
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