Fire suppression systems and tools garner most of the attention in the ongoing fight to save lives from fire. Often it is the early detection of fire that is the most effective way to prevent them. Automatic fire detection systems can significantly reduce property damage, injury, fire detection services and deaths from fire. The main function of automated fire detection systems is to quickly identify a developing fire and alert occupants before extensive damage occurs. These automated detection systems work by using electronic sensors to detect the flames, heat, or smoke from a fire and provide an early warning.
With flame detectors, line of sight devices search for ultraviolet, visible and infrared light emitted by flames during combustion. When the device detects the signature light from a fire it triggers an alarm. These devices are best suited for use outdoors, in areas with high ceilings or in spaces where highly flammable materials are used or stored. Heat detectors are best for spaces that are polluted or for smoky environments like kitchens and dirty or dusty spaces. Although these devices are less sensitive than smoke and flame detectors they are appropriate for use in these areas where light detection of smoke particles or flame can be compromised. Most heat detectors react either to a predetermined set temperature or a broad temperature range, fire detection a signal is sent to an alarm when the temperature threshold is breached.
There are two main types of smoke detectors, ionization and photoelectric detectors and they function by sensing the invisible or visible smoke particles produced from combustion. The ionization detector responds well to the minute particles of smoke from very hot or flaming fires but less so for the heavy particles of smoke produced by low heat or smoldering fires. By contrast the photoelectric detector sees the dense smoke particles from smoldering fires quite well but reacts slowly to the lighter particles of very hot fires. The important thing to remember is to identify the type of space being occupied and to install the appropriate number fire detection service of automated detection devices in order to effectively provide an early warning.