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New Approaches to the Interpretation of Signals From Fire Sensors.


pdf icon New Approaches to the Interpretation of Signals From Fire Sensors. (959 K)
Bukowski, R. W.; Reneke, P. A.

Fire Suppression and Detection Research Application Symposium. Research and Practice: Bridging the Gap. Proceedings. Fire Protection Research Foundation. February 24-26, 1999, Orlando, FL, 55-64 pp, 1999 AND International Conference on Automatic Fire Detection "AUBE '99", 11th. Proceedings. University of Duisburg. [Internationale Konferenze uber automatischen Brandentdeckung.] March 16-18,1999, Duisburg, Germany, Luck, H., Editor, 11-21 pp, 1999 AND Sensors Expo. Proceedings. Sponsored by Sensors Magazine. May 4-6, 1999, Baltimore, MD, Helmers Publishing, Inc., Peterborough, NH, 291-298 pp, 1999, 1999.

Keywords:

sensors; fire detection systems; false alarms; fire detectors; fire models; smoke detectors; cross correlation

Abstract:

In recent years fire sensors have evolved from threshold devices that sense a single fire signature to multi-mode, multi-criteria sensors that can employ algorithms for decision making. However, these algorithms have so far been based on simple, signal cross-correlation techniques or have employed simple truth tables in an effort to exclude sources of false activations while not rejecting real events. At NIST's Building and Fire Research Laboratory, new research has been initiated to apply our experience with physically based computer models of fire growth and spread in enclosed spaces to the interpretation of signals from fire sensors. Here, data from fire sensors are compared in real time to signals that would be expected from a fire within the protected space. The sensor data is used to adjust the simulation so that it matches reality. Signals that are inconsistent with the physical laws of fire growth can be questioned and when signals track with projections the system can provide detailed information on current conditions within the space as well as an ability to project future conditions. This latter ability is of considerable interest to fire brigades who could be warned of conditions that may threaten their safety or that of occupants. While in its early stages, the research results are promising.