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Tuesday 17 July 2018


FM Global develops new fire protection system

Written by staff reporter

FM Global has developed a new design for automatic fire sprinkler protection, with enhanced sensitivity to thermal radiation from flames and suitable for applications including spaces where sprinkler protection is required beneath grated mezzanines, and special fire hazards such as covered open yard storage.

Vice-president of research at FM Global, Louis Gritzo said many of the major developments in sprinkler technology since 1955 have been a result of FM Global’s scientific research. The commercial and industrial property insurer has made its latest research available to industry, free of charge.

“We are freely sharing this patented technology with the fire protection industry to encourage the development of commercially available radiation-activated sprinklers. As a mutually-owned insurer with a unique engineering focus, the availability of such sprinklers will benefit our policyholder-owners by helping them better prevent property loss and be more resilient,” Gritzo explained.

Among the key findings from FM Global’s scientific research:

1. There are scenarios where traditional sprinklers developed for ceiling-level protection might not activate in a timely manner, or not at all, because hot gases from a fire never reach them, despite a fire being physically close.

2. Sprinklers can be designed with enhanced sensitivity to thermal radiation to provide adequate response to the heat from flames of a nearby fire.

3. The sprinklers designed for this study were reliably capable of addressing specialised fire protection scenarios.

‘Radiation-Activated Sprinklers’ is available at

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