A breakthrough in automated warehouse fire safety, OxyReduct® carefully reduces oxygen levels in the air, replacing them with nitrogen to create a protective atmosphere in which fire cannot ignite. What many people don’t know: nitrogen is a natural, non-toxic gas that makes up over 78% of the air we breathe. Using it to lower oxygen levels in protected areas not only helps to fireproof facilities, it also keeps the warehouse safely accessible to authorized staff.
As e-fulfillment centers and distribution centers across the U.S. seek ways to maximize throughput and improve order accuracy, automation is rapidly gaining ground. According to a recent MMH (Modern Materials Handling) study, warehouse owners are significantly bumping up investments in automated materials handling equipment. The Peerless Research Group’s annual survey concurs with these findings.
While vertical storage and shuttle systems indeed serve to optimize storage capacity, improve the flow of goods and boost a distribution center’s bottom line, they also need dedicated fire protection measures. Conventional extinguishing systems, such as sprinklers, are largely ineffective due to the structural characteristics of warehouse facilities that use these shuttle systems, including dense storage, high ceilings and extremely limited flue spaces.
While a fire prevention system like OxyReduct® is the preferred choice for most warehouse environments, densely packed goods in enclosed systems, like vertical lift shuttles, require a different fire safety approach. Once again, WAGNER has risen to the challenge. To ensure maximum fire protection for vertical shuttle and paternoster systems, WAGNER developed FirExting, a dedicated gaseous fire suppression solution used by brands like Kardex Remstar, the world’s leading manufacturer of automated storage and retrieval equipment, among others.
FirExting is usually installed together with WAGNER’s air sampling smoke detector, TITANUS®. TITANUS® permanently takes air samples to detect the very first signs of smoke. If the smoke particle concentration in a sample exceeds a preset limit, TITANUS® sets off an alarm, and FirExting is activated. Diffuser tubes with numerous nozzles customized to fit individual racking systems gently release nitrogen into the area, effectively lowering oxygen levels in the unit and suppressing the fire. Gradual, careful nitrogen release ensures that even the most delicate products remain damage-free.
Several minutes after the first round of nitrogen is released, another one is triggered to ensure compliance with the ten-minute hold time required by the VdS guideline 2380, during which the oxygen level is kept low in the unit to prevent the fire from reigniting.
With the TITANUS® AND FirExting power duo, goods and storage unit remain intact, even in the event of a fire.