Fire Suppression Gases – Inergen Agent

INERGEN agent is a mixture of three oxygen diluting (inerting) gases consisting of 52% nitrogen, 40% argon and 8% carbon dioxide. The INERGEN system lowers the combustion probability of flammable materials within a confined space by decreasing the oxygen content below the combustible level. INERGEN is a breathable gaseous agent that releases the correct mixture of gases while allows a person to still breathe even in an oxygen reduced atmosphere. In fact, it enhances the body’s ability to absorb oxygen as a result of the increased carbon dioxide levels.

The atmosphere in a room, under normal conditions, contains 21% oxygen and less than 1% carbon dioxide. When the oxygen content is below 15%, most combustibles stop burning. INERGEN agent reduces oxygen content to approximately 12.5% while increasing the carbon dioxide content to about 3%. The increase in carbon dioxide increases a person’s respiration rate and the body’s ability to absorb oxygen. The higher carbon dioxide levels stimulate the human body allowing a person to breathe deeper and more rapidly. It essentially compensates for the lower oxygen content in the atmosphere.

INERGEN System Design and Installation

The INERGEN Fire Suppression System is manufactured by Ansul and utilizes a fixed nozzle agent distribution network. The system is designed and installed in accordance with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standard 2001, ”Clean Agent Fire Extinguishing Systems.” When properly designed and installed, the INERGEN system will extinguish a surface burning fire in Class A, B, and C hazards by means of lowering the oxygen content below the combustion level. INERGEN agent has also been tested by FMRC for inerting capabilities. These tests indicated that the INERGEN agent successfully inserted mixtures of propane/air, and methane/air at concentrations between 40% and 50%.

These fire suppression systems can be activated by detection and control equipment for automatic system operation along with providing local and remote manual operation as needed. Accessories are used to provide alarms, ventilation control, door closures or other auxiliary shutdown functions. A system installation and maintenance manual is available containing invaluable information. It includes system components and procedures concerning design, operation, inspection, maintenance, and recharge. The system should only be installed and serviced by authorized distributors that are fully trained by the manufacturer.

Basic Use of the INERGEN system

The INERGEN system is used for suppressing fires in a number of hazardous situations. It’s particularly useful where electrically non-conductive medium is essential; where clean-up of other agents present a problem or where the hazard is occupied and requires a non-toxic agent.

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