Sometimes known as ‘monitors’, water cannons are fixed position fire extinguishing nozzles that can be used to directly target a fire at your facility.

Whilst they use the same suppression agents, there is very little commonality between Sprinkler and Deluge systems and monitors. Fire Sprinkler Systems and Deluge Systems operate by discharging through nozzles located directly above the risk area, fed by a network of suppression pipework. Automatic Water Cannon, however, discharge large volumes of suppression agent from a single fixed location, and at high pressure to give it an excellent range of coverage.

Water Cannons are often combined with a 3rd party detection system for automatic activation, although they can be an entirely manual system as well. The most common detection system is a Thermal Fire Detection system, which can also provide details on the location of the threat, and automatically target the threat. When combined with this system, water cannons provide a uniquely effective system to swiftly and accurately target fires, and even douse hotpots before they develop into a blaze.

How do Automatic Water Cannons work?

As mentioned above, water cannons are often combined with a Thermal Fire Detection system. This operates by scanning the area for infra-red radiation, which it can then convert into a temperature reading. When a set temperature threshold is reached, the fire alarm is activated and signals relayed to the cannon.

The signals received by the cannon include details of the zone in which the fire has been detected. This provides the cannon the information on the area to concentrate the suppression, and the water cannon, mounted on a motorized chassis with a self-aligning system, turns and directs the water jet directly at the risk area identified by the detection system.

The direct targeting of a risk area has the effect of concentrating the suppression on a relatively small area. At Blazequel we provide and deliver up to 2,500ltr/min of suppression agent, rapidly containing and suppressing the fire.

No other building protection automatic fire extinguishing system can operate with such speed and precision, dealing directly with the point of risk rather than blanket protecting a whole area. This targeted approach ensures that the risk is dealt with swiftly and efficiently and minimizes clean-up costs.

Benefits & Drawbacks

  • Automatic water cannon systems can sometimes work out to be a substantially lower cost than fire sprinkler/deluge systems, yet respond far more swiftly.
  • As a single water cannon can protect a very large area, the amount of engineering required in your system is significantly lower than when installing a sprinkler system or deluge system. This reduces disruption to your operations – particularly for retro-fit applications.
  • The water cannon(s) will deliver more water to the area at risk at a higher pressure than sprinkler/deluge systems. This will increase its effectiveness in dealing with deep seated fires and hotspots.
  • As you are using thermal imaging to detect signs of fire or a developing hotspot, the system is proactive as well as reactive – a massive improvement on traditional fixed systems.
  • The water cannon can be remotely controlled using a joystick if required, which will help the fire service fight the fire from a safe distance in the event of a large incident.
  • The thermal imaging system will also be invaluable in a large incident in allowing the fire service to get a proper understanding of the risk to ensure they can deal with it quickly and safely.
  • However, consideration is required for the type of waste being processed to ensure that the force of the water cannon does not spread the burning materials.
  • As the water cannons will provide targeted protection, rather than blanket protection (as with deluge system) it may not be so effective at tackling a fast-moving surface fire.

Contact us for more information and advice about Automatic Water Cannon System

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