Most recyclable materials such as electronics, car bodies, appliances, municipal curbside, plastics, wire, and tires exhibit a certain level of flammability. Under the right conditions with heat, spark, or a minor explosion, a fire can begin. Add in small batteries to the mix of municipal, metals, and electronics recycling, and the problem is even worse. Many of these plants have multiple rubber transfer conveyors and ventilation systems. It is critical that the early stages of a fire beginning initiates an engineered countermeasure to shut down the plant rapidly to prevent fire spreading and also deliver targeted water to the affected area while alerting operations.
Developed by a team of engineers from recycling operations who were fed up with many nuisance fires and several fire department visits, a simple PLC based control panel was designed that used advanced 3-band infrared detectors and is designed to energize water solenoid valves and initiate a plant emergency stop while activating a horn and beacon. The detectors are versatile and can even allow for long distance detection and have a high level of immunity to false alarms. For the example of burning paper, the detectors have a range up to 80 feet. The detectors are protected in heavy duty stainless enclosures and are durable for recycling plant environments. Our team has purchased and used multiple detector models and the ones used on the TMS-1 have been proven the most effective long term.
Early versions of this type of system used a building fire panel which was costly and used a proprietary programming language requiring fire suppression contractors to make adjustments and troubleshoot faults. The TMS-1 uses a purpose built UL508A PLC control panel with an Allen Bradley processor. To be clear, this system is NOT A LISTED FIRE SUPPRESSION PRODUCT. This is a thermal monitoring system for process equipment. Any fire suppression listed devices should always be permitted and inspected by local fire agencies. The TMS-1 is designed to supplement an already sufficient building fire suppression sprinkler system and is not a substitute.
The TMS can manage 5 distinct plant equipment defined zones. Each zone can accommodate several detectors and water solenoid valves for redundancy. Special conical water nozzles are included to ensure the best water pattern delivery to conveyor belts and shredders. Additional contacts are included in the panel to allow for input into an existing plant control system if desired.
- Shear shredders and waste reducers
- Output collection areas of finished goods
- Separation equipment
- Recycler applications
- MSW, curbside, single stream
- Alternative fuel production