"Innovative technologies to combat large-scale fires - as a factor in increasing the safety and survivability of fuel and energy facilities"

G.Kuprin - General Director of the NGO "Sopot", Vice-President of the World Academy of Integrated Security, Ph.D.
I.Abduragimov - leading specialist JSC NPO "Sopot", Ph.D., professor, member of the National Academy of Fire Safety.

           Recently, a number of leading countries increased activity on the design and construction of new or renovation of existing oil and gas production facilities, refineries, oil transshipment terminals, drilling platforms for the development of offshore fields, docks and other coastal infrastructure.
           Of equal interest is manifested to ABM systems (missile) and FFP (anti-space) defense, floating and stationary power units and complexes, military aircraft carriers and tanker fleet.
           In this context, the issue is urgent to establish reliable systems provide "survivability" of these expensive and extremely complex from a scientific and engineering point of view of the objects and in particular the question of the effective (timely) fire suppression.
        However, analysis of the current state and the level of Firefighting in RUSSIA, particularly the most dangerous in this plan Property FEC, causes severe and understandable concerns!
       A retrospective analysis of complex multifactorial processes and phenomena as fires and explosions in fuel and energy facilities, a somewhat simplified method of pair correlations dominating influence clearly shows steady complication provide the required level of DMPs in general, and the fuel and energy facilities in particular.
          This is completely objective and compelling reasons. Unfortunately, even the most friendly analysis of the actual level and the state of security in the country PVB general, and especially in the fuel and energy facilities, clearly shows its catastrophic decline.
          Even though the real and the apparent improvement of many types of fire equipment and control devices have emerged fires (including "robots - fire", "thermally activated water" and other delights psevdonovye). 
          In support of the above are given for the sake of brevity, only 3 - 4 examples only for the last 2 - 3 years:
       1 - A fire at the tank with the tank farm Sibtransnefti combustible. When extinguishing this fire by subsurface foam supply, fire spread to a nearby tank through pipes HUS, solely because of incompetence (if not - technical illiteracy!) Fire experts;
        2 - The absurdity of the "modernization" of fire extinguishing systems for tanks with flammable liquids - combustible underlayer way ROSNEFT fire at the tank farms (and most of the largest oil companies in Russia) while preserving all the shortcomings and errors of these systems, including HUS, leading to the spread of fire to adjacent reservoirs;
        3 - "Showcase" fire fighting in feeble fire flowing combustible landfill Yuganskneftegaz, which have been completely disavowed by the methods used for decades extinguish such fires "legendary" by Russian plants AGVT - 100, developed by the 30 - 40 years ago it was to extinguish such fires, and the new system than powder suppression of the "Tungus - 24", analogues have been successfully used to extinguish such fires in Gazprom to this day, more than 35 years. (known and dozens of other shameful facts firefighting level of incompetence - on the verge of a crime).
        But that did not seem to so criminally bad things with fire fighting facilities FEC only here in RUSSIA - recalled the tragedy and shame with a 2 week firefighting on the drilling platform Bi - Pi in the Gulf of Mexico. (And many more, and no less annoying infamous examples). Threatening causes reduction and quality of collateral PVB FEC objects and the results of fighting fires in these facilities in Russia, consists mainly in an invalid, a dramatic drop in the level of training and unprecedented decline in prof. Excellence practitioners fire and "specialist" responsible for PSI in the country over the last 10 - 15 years! Therefore, further planned expansion of production capacity of the country FEC objects and especially the further development of new energy production regions: the sea shelf and areas north facing inevitable major accidents and disasters. Because we insist on going to this with tightly closed eyes and ears, not seeing or hearing the surrounding reality! (Cm. Publication last 2 - 3 years in the Jour. PVB)   
           But the situation, in spite of all its tragedy, it is not hopeless. (As with everything else in the modern RUSSIA). If, finally, will be understood that this is not the only problem is the oil companies, the Ministry of Energy, Ministry of Industry or, worse, emergency, and it is a problem of national scope.
         We successfully improved fleet of fire engines, developing new techniques and methods for high-fire (particularly in the use of combined and foam fire fighting foams), enabling great results extinguishing fires at the sites of complex FEC; successfully developed sophisticated fire fighting equipment powder OS, and aggregates for its implementation, and more
            But, as usual, everything is either very slowly being introduced in Russia, or, come to us "THROUGH abroad", as has happened more than once.
          Most domestic and foreign designers use as reference parameters for calculating fixed fire extinguishing systems design area and the intensity of fighting a fire extinguishing agent. Multiplying these values??, the desired flow rate of the required fire extinguishers to extinguish a fire on some theoretical (sometimes arbitrarily chosen) projected area. It does not address the issue or the impact of the wind (if a fire occurs in an open area), nor the need for fire protection of the facilities inside the area (for example, when it comes to putting out a helicopter on the helipad).
          A number of designers as the primary means of extinguishing the project lay in the use of water, even where its use may actually lead to the spread of fire, and not to fire (such as for irrigation or air spaces with motor vehicles). Other experts recommend only low expansion foam (R = 7) or only medium expansion foam (R = more than 50-70), even despite the fact that the practice and the results of research and development work shows that the highest extinguishing efficiency have foam multiplicity 20-40.
         The fallacy of the decisions included in the project is compounded of fire protection equipment and fire extinguishing using fluorinated blowing agents based on components such as AFFF (Aqueous Film Forming Foam), which is not really proved its effectiveness in real-extinguishing large fires, both on sea and on onshore, but on the contrary, promoted environmental damage because of its high (see the incident in the Gulf of Mexico) environmental hazard. By the way, for almost 10 years as the production of fluorinated blowing agents is prohibited by the UN Committee on Ecology and the Environment.
        The reason for the ineffectiveness of design solutions for fire protection explosive objects in our opinion, is exactly what the basis for calculations is taken not required (required) speed fire on a specific subject, and the flow rate and the estimated area
         In our opinion, the basis of the initial data for the design is to be taken the minimum time in which the object should be a way not only to locate, but also for fire suppression. This parameter can be obtained on the basis of preliminary studies of the dynamics of physical and chemical processes of combustion in the protected object and effects of fire hazards in the design of the equipment and devices that are on the subject, as well as on the environment.
         For example, when extinguishing aircraft, especially helicopters, keep in mind that the design of the helicopter withstand flames for no more than 30 - 40sec. With a longer fire inside the helicopter are critical to human life conditions, construction materials begin to break down helicopters, vessels and equipment under pressure (as well as weapons and ammunition) are beginning to explode, creating the threat of a catastrophic space.
          Thus, in a particular case, such as the design of the protection of helicopter pads, one should proceed from the fact that the fire must be brought under control, and in any case, put in a time of 1 min., Irrespective of the area to which spread the fire.
         For example, assuming that the area of fire is a constant (in the case of a helipad limited coaming size 20x20m, ie 400m2), and the time required extinguishing 30-40 sec., Therefore quenching rate must be at least 10-13m2 / sec.
         This parameter allows you to choose the one fire-fighting equipment, which allows the simultaneous quenching, cooling design and development of fire prevention or re-ignition on the protected area at the right time.
         This approach was adopted by the JSC NPO "Sopot" as a basis for the design and development of a comprehensive fire suppression at sites of sea and shore-based high explosive.
         The system implements a new technology extinguishing foams different dispersion and multiplicity, ie provides simultaneous flow jet foam of low and medium ratio or water spray to the increased distance.
        One of the key elements of the system are its ultimate units (fire monitors), the effectiveness of which depends on the time of fire extinguishing.
        This set of combined firefighting ICFF "Blizzard", the number and power of which is chosen as the calculation.
         So, for example, to protect the oil platform deck and helideck can be used fire monitors ICFF "Blizzard" 100 ICFF "Blizzard" 150 or ICFF "Blizzard" 300.
        Created on the basis of R & D units provide the foam of low and medium ratio at a distance of 100 to 170m. Capacities from 100 to 350l/sek.
        Settings are controlled remotely. Managed by the operator, who is in the module
        Perhaps the use of robotic systems based ICFF "Blizzard" with high extinguishing efficiency.
        Given the range of the developed systems, the average is up to 150 meters and with the loss of extinguishing agent in flight, cash-protected area of ??15 000m2.
       To meet a set of goals developed stand of container Fire Modules (APMKT), whose main aim is to ensure the flow of aqueous solutions of foam required flow and pressure for fire extinguishing installations.
        The main element of the complex is the diesel pump station, located inside a standard shipping container. Insulated container. In the upper part of the master stream nozzle is placed ICFF "Blizzard" 300 with a remote control.
        Rated power of the motor is about 600kVt. Performance of the pump set over 1000m3 / h The developed pressure - 120 - 160m.
        The container is equipped with a fuel tank with a fuel capacity of 3 - 4 hours of battery life. Starting the motor starter from its own battery
        The module is equipped with an autonomous system penosmesheniya which supply 3 - 6% foaming solution. Used foam or synthetic hydrocarbon Russian producers.
        The system consists of water tank and foam, the number of which is determined by calculation and shall provide fire suppression throughout the protected area at a given time. This specification was developed and produced by our fire engines, have been used for many special fire facilities Energy and Defense. If necessary, use these innovative methods to extinguish even larger, more rapidly developing fire, we have the design that improve the basic parameters of extinguishing fires in the most complex objects FEC and specials. objects in 3 - 4 times, increasing the quenching rate to 40 - 50 m2/sec.! (Quenching the fire, which can not provide for today nor any single piece of fire fighting equipment in the world!)     


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