Experts in fire protection

Overview

Modern gas- and steam-generating stations, which are now reaching efficiencies of over 60%, are often characterized by a complex production system. Very different operating units including two different turbine types form a construct with high demands for the organization of reliability and safety.

In addition to this, conditions such as extremely hot surfaces and lubricating oils pose huge fire risks. If the beginnings of a fire in a power station are not recognized automatically and extinguished immediately, the costs of damage can quickly run up into millions: Even fire damage in a secondary area can cause prolonged down times for the entire power generation process. Equally, false fire alarms and extinguisher activation can also lead to power station down time. In order to protect people, objects and the environment, a sophisticated and made-to-measure fire protection concept is necessary.

In power stations, almost the whole spectrum of modern fire protection equipment comes into use. Sprinkler systems are an important component of building protection. These can be adapted to particular requirements by the choice of sprinkler. A fire detection system complements building protection in all areas. The fire detectors’ signals run together into the fire detection- and extinguishing control unit. This notifies people in danger as well as the fire service and in many cases assumes control and function monitoring of the fire protection systems.

In addition to the basic configuration, other fire protection systems come into operation for total flooding and local protection in gas and steam-generating stations:

Protected areas

1
Steam turbines
2
Gas turbines
3
Transformers
4
Electric & control rooms
5
Server rooms
6
Cable ducts
7
Offices
8
Oil tank
9
Boiler houses with waste heat boilers
  1. Steam turbines
    1 Steam turbines

    Protection zone

    Whether hydraulically controlled valves, turbines or generator bearings, oil supply pumps, turbine conditioning rooms or oil tank and pipe rooms, all of these sections are part of the steam turbine area.

    Risks

    • Flammable liquids
    • Leaks in the lubricating- and control oil system
    • Hot surfaces

    Fire Protection

    Extinguishing is preferably via release of the automatic or semi-automatic Minifog ProCon water mist extinguishing system. Because of the significantly lower exposure with extinguishing water in comparison with a conventional deluge system, the danger of thermal warping in hot turbine components or turbine bearings is thereby considerably reduced. The release of the extinguishing systems is via a fire detection system using intelligent UniVario flame- and heat detectors. This can also be used to monitor the process. 

  2. Gas turbines
    2 Gas turbines

    Protection zone

    The gas turbine is the heart of the gas- and steam-generating station. Its main components are housed in an acoustic enclosure for reasons of noise protection.

    Risks

    • Hot surfaces on which lubricating oil can ignite
    • High fire load

    Fire Protection

    Carbon dioxide extinguishing system ensure quick, residue-free fire extinguishing, even in areas which are difficult to access. In large turbines low pressure CO2 extinguishing systems are frequently used, since due to the liquid storage only a small amount of space is required for a lot of extinguishing agent. Alternatively Minifog ProCon XP high-pressure water mist extinguishing systems offer reliable protection. Compared to classical water spray extinguishing systems, Minifog ProCon XP however reduces the consumption of extinguishing water by approx. 95%. This extremely low consumption of extinguishing water reduces the risk of water damage and thermal warping of hot machine parts to a minimum. A fire detection system releases the extinguishing system by means of UniVario flame- and heat detectors.

  3. Transformers
    3 Transformers

    Protection zone

    Transformers make sure that electricity is ready for network distribution. They function as links between the turbine, the turbine generators and the network. They consist typically of the transformer housing with a cooler, oil conservators and oil-filled insulators.

    Risks

    • Short circuits within the transformers
    • Overheating
    • Leaking oil

    Fire Protection

    As soon as overheating is detected, the transformer is automatically shut down to prevent a fire from breaking out. The basis for the fire protection is a Buchholz relay. This relay ensures prompt identification of cooling required for components at risk of overheating. The TrafoProtect solution developed by Minimax based on the latest research results, protection aims and testing schemes completes the concept. The special UL-approved nozzles, Viking Model A and Model C-1, achieve an even and consistent distribution of water when activated. In doing so, the system successfully meets the protection aims of "control" and "suppression". At the same time, the consumption of water can be reduced to a level significantly below that of conventional deluge systems. A fire detection system will trigger the extinguishing system.

  4. Electric & control rooms
    4 Electric & control rooms

    Protection zone

    Control rooms are very sensitive and high-quality facilities which control fundamental production processes. They contain electric switching and control equipment plus false floors with extensive cabling. Even minor defects may cause substantial operational failures.

    Risks

    • Short circuits
    • Highly flammable materials

    Fire Protection

    Oxeo inert gas extinguishing systems offer reliable protection in control rooms. For smaller control rooms, MX 1230 extinguishing systems offer an economical alternative. The extinguishing system is triggered by a fire detection system using punctiform smoke detectors or HELIOS AMX5000 aspirating smoke detectors.

  5. Server rooms
    5 Server rooms

    Protection zone

    Server rooms are important, sensitive areas. In these rooms, data of high importance for business operations is stored, managed and exchanged over the network. The irretrievable loss of this data through a fire may have considerable economic consequences for productivity or even the future of a company.

    Risks

    • Overheating of technical equipment
    • Defects such as short circuits
    • Considerable damage even in the case of small fires

    Fire Protection

    For small and medium-sized server rooms, the MX 1230 extinguishing system is the ideal solution. It gives residue-free extinguishing using the innovative Novec™ 1230 extinguishing agents and requires very little space. Oxeo inert gas extinguishing systems are ideal for large server rooms. The MX 1230 extinguishing system and Oxeo inert gas extinguishing systems are triggered, and fires are detected, by a fire detection system using a HELIOS AMX5000 smoke aspirating system.

  6. Cable ducts
    6 Cable ducts

    Protection zone

    Whether for power supply or data transmission, countless cables are required for the operation and supply of a power station. In order to provide adequate protection, in addition to for aesthetic reasons, cables are distributed via cable channels and organized in cable rooms and galleries.

    Risks

    • Technical defects, such as short circuits
    • Rapid spread of fire

    Fire Protection

    The Minifog ProCon water mist extinguishing system is used in cable ducts as well as in cable rooms and galleries. Designed with impulse nozzles in cable ducts, and with twin hollow core nozzles in cable rooms and galleries, this water mist extinguishing system is particularly notable for its minimal consumption of water. Fire detection and triggering of the water mist extinguishing system in cabling areas is done through fire detection systems with optical smoke detectors. 

  7. Offices
    7 Offices

    Protection zone

    Offices, conference rooms and dining rooms are generally used by staff and guests. In addition, staff members may also retire to break rooms or smoking rooms and to kitchens during work. Corridors run through the entire building, serving as a main traffic route.

    Risks

    • Defective electrical devices such as projectors and computers
    • Overheating of the lighting
    • Short circuits at vending machines

    Fire Protection

    Minifog EconAqua water mist extinguishing systems offer space- and water-saving protection and can be connected to an existing sprinkler system. In areas with higher ceilings, sprinkler systems provide reliable fire protection. 

  8. Oil tank
    8 Oil tank

    Protection zone

    In gas and steam-generating stations in which dual-fuel turbines are used that can be fired with both gas and oil, fuel or heating oil is stored in large tanks.

    Risks

    • Lightning strike
    • Formation of sparks via static charging
    • Ignition of the gases in the oil tank

    Fire Protection

    Optimum fire protection is offered here by foam extinguishing systems with the MX Tankfoam RTK system kit. The system generates low expansion foam, which is given out from above, in the event of a fire, on to the burning surface of the liquid. The foam has an immediate cooling effect, smothers the flames preventing further outbreak of fire and protects the now extinguished area from reignition. With a deluge system the tank side wall and if necessary its roof are cooled in parallel.

  9. Boiler houses with waste heat boilers
    9 Boiler houses with waste heat boilers

    Protection zone

    From a fire protection perspective, boiler houses in gas- and steam-generating stations must be divided into two areas. On the one hand into the area in which the technical equipment is located, such as feed pumps or electrical switch systems, and on the other into the area of the boiler in which the steam is generated and in which there is hardly any fire load. 

    Risks

    • Technical defects such as short circuits
    • Oil escaping via leakages in the oil supply system
    • Hot surfaces or sparking which ignite transmission fluid

    Fire Protection

    Minifog ProCon water mist extinguishing system fights a fire quickly and reliably with significantly less use of extinguishing water than conventional deluge systems. A fire detection system releases the extinguishing system. Wall mounted hydrants are available for the initial manual attack within the area of the boiler.

Downloads

Fire protection solutions for Combined cycle power plants
Brochures (3.0 mb)
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TraFoProtect - Fire protection solution for oil-cooled transformers
Brochures (2.0 mb)
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