Data Centers use electronic equipment to manipulate large amounts of information, often fed into the system from paper (payments, orders) and printed onto paper (invoices, statements). Whether your business is data (banking, insurance, brokerage), or whether data processing is essential to your business operation (airline reservations, utility billing, chain store inventory management), the data center is critical to your business’s objectives, and vital to the continued productivity and profitability of your company.
Despite the low rates of fires in data processing facilities, the risk remains as computers become faster and are requiring more energy, thus generating more heat. High volume paper handling creates its own fire hazard. Uninterrupted power systems and their storage batteries pose an additional fire risk.
Many companies rely on sprinklers as the only fire protection for Data Centre Fire Protection. The shortcomings of this strategy are numerous: Sprinklers are designed to protect the building structure, but not your assets. Sprinklers need significant heat to operate, requiring a full flaming fire, destroying assets (i.e., computers and other electronic equipment) at the source of the fire. Assets surrounding the fire suffer collateral damage from water and smoke, with smoke contamination often destroying other near by electronic equipment. The cost of business interruption, including software recovery and clean up is often significantly more than the cost of the asset destroyed in the fire.
Fire protection in data centers has evolved significantly in recent years, with new technologies, plus changes to the regulations governing fire protection. Gone are the days of being able to use Halon-based systems. Now, there is a whole new generation of fire protection systems in play. This is a good time to review fire protection requirements. Data center owners or managers may have specific industry challenges, such as protection of valuable server equipment.
Downtime in the event of a fire outbreak can be catastrophic, and business continuity is a top priority. Plus, while personnel in data centers tends to be minimal, there may still be staff on-site who need to be protected, so use of fire suppression agents with a high margin of safety is critical. Data center fire protection strategies often integrate numerous facets into one solution, such as a combination of suppression and smoke detection systems.
When suppression systems are installed as part of a data center’s fire protection strategy, there is a need to identify and investigate an alert or alarm condition prior to an extinguishing suppression system’s operation. Depending on the suppression system used, there could be a need for a fire detection system interface to initiate sprinkler pre-action valve operations or damper-closing operations prior to clean agent release or to shut down HVAC systems and other equipment.
There are a number of different data center fire suppression systems available. We will advise you on the best fire suppression systems for your facility, as well as a fully certified design & installation service, room integrity testing, and commissioning of both conventional and analogue addressable fire panels. IDCS has considerable experience in, the following systems:-