Clean agent suppression

March 2010 Fire & Safety

Deon van Zyl from Brigit Systems examines an environmentally safe way to suppress indoor fires.

Clean agent suppression has increasingly become more prevalent as the global shift towards environmentally safe products accelerates.

Gaseous chemical suppression systems (clean agent systems), have been employed to protect electronics and other valuables that are susceptible to water damage for over 40 years. Clean agents such as FM200 are not electrically conductive and do not damage electronics; they are also safe for people. If a clean agent system is discharged it leaves behind no residue and does not require clean up afterwards.

Clean agent systems act quickly to suppress and extinguish fires by means of removing heat and breaking up the fire at a molecular level, due to this they minimise the amount of smoke and soot damage that could occur. Clean agents provide 3-dimensional protection:

* They discharge in under 10 seconds or less.

* They are internationally accredited.

* They are widely viewed as the best alternative to using Halon 1301 gas suppression systems.

Integrity testing

When dealing with data and server room suppression, integrity testing should play a major role in how a company designs and installs a suppression system, but sadly this is often overlooked.

Integrity testing is the only accurate way to determine how a suppression system will perform its duty. Integrity tests determine the rooms tightness by means of pressurising and depressurising a room to get an average room leakage, this then tells us how long a room will retain the suppressant and the amount of time that there will be no chance of a fire igniting again. These tests are an important design tool to many companies.

Inert gas suppression

Pro Inert gas systems are a safe and natural way to extinguish a fire. Pro Inert gas systems are safer and more economical to suppress fire than most other options. They operate at lower pressures and this means lower risks, costs, no excess expenses. Due to this one can save up to 60% on venting and storage expenses. Inert agents are completely environmentally safe as they do not deplete the ozone in any way as they contain no CFCs.

Pro Inert systems put out fires by lowering the oxygen level in the room to a point where a fire can no longer sustain itself, but not lower than the minimum oxygen level required for humans to be able to breath, so in the event of someone not being able to escape the room in time and the gas is released no harm will come to that person as the gas is completely non toxic. Pro Inert or IG55 is made up of 50% Aragonite and 50% Nitrogen two common gases found in our atmosphere.

For more information contact Deon van Zyl, Brigit Systems South Africa, +27 (0)83 459 1432,,


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