West Midlands-based Jactone, which has more than 35 years’ experience in the fire protection industry, is entering the kitchen fire suppression market for the first time with a system called PAFSS KitchenGuard, which it claims uses a novel method to respond to fires.
Instead of the traditional mechanical actuation, KitchenGuard works through pressurised detection tubing which is installed in front of the filters under the hood, behind the plenum (space behind the filters) and into the duct.
In a fire situation the flame melts the pressurised tubing and a hole appears. The drop in pressure in the tubing opens the valve on the system cylinder and the wet chemical extinguishant is delivered via a system of stainless steel pipework and nozzles onto the appliances, into the plenum and up into the duct.
Jactone believes that this linear method results in much faster fire detection and system activation, as the flexible detection tubing means there is an unlimited number of detection points. The system valve activation takes place by pneumatic signal only, so no other mechanical movement or electrical
Managing director, Craig Halford, believes the main driver for change in the kitchen fire suppression market is the need to reduce the complexity of systems, while at the same time increasing their reliability to operate in the event of a fire.
“A significant development is in the area of fire detection, where detection devices are now available that are not affected by oil contamination and are much more responsive, operating in the earlier stages of a real fire,” he says. “It is this much earlier actuation that has been a key aim, meaning the slow build-up of energy in duct systems, due to slow detection and actuation of the fire suppression system, with resultant fire spread via ducts into associated property, can be minimised.”
Halford also observes that in the same way that handheld portable fire extinguishers are now mostly stored pressure with a confirmatory pressure gauge confirming health, modern kitchen fire suppression systems are now following the ‘stored pressure’ principle with integral pressure gauges confirming system readiness to operate.
“This means end-users can be re-assured that the system will function, when required,” he says. “All of these modern developments mean that there is less to go wrong when servicing and maintaining the systems, leading to greater responsiveness, reliability and readiness.”