Vulcan Research and Controls, LLC Panama City United States
This report describes an investigation of Novec 1230, a total flood agent, for smaller-volume applications to suppress ground-level petroleum fuel fires in aircraft hangars. A 30308-ft concrete-and-steel test structure was constructed for this test series. Four discharge assemblies consisting of a 20-ft manifold with four fan nozzles and a pressurized composite vessel containing the agent were installed, on the sides of the test structure. System discharge parameters---discharge time, discharge rate, and quantity of agent discharged---were adjusted to produce the desired Novec 1230 concentration and retention time in the test structure. Novec 1230 vapor concentrations were monitored using two 3-channel gas analyzers, which verified that agent concentration in the test structure exceeded the required extinguishing concentration for at least 5 min after discharge. Two fire suppression tests were conducted with the discharge system. The first test involved suppression of an array of 36 cups filled with Jet-A fuel. The second involved suppression of a 4.6-gal, approximately 5-ft diameter, Jet-A pool fire. Both fires were successfully extinguished by the Novec 1230 discharge system. Air measurements during extinguishment showed concentrations of hydrogen fluoride in excess of immediately dangerous to life and health IDLH values, indicating incompatibility with Novecs use in occupied spaces. Calculations predict that Novec 1230 may generate 3x the concentrations of hydrogen fluoride produced from halon agents. Peripheral effects of hydrogen fluoride in the post fire environment were not considered.