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Foam Extinguishing Systems - Essay Example

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Use of foam extinguishing systems for fight and controlling fire is not a new technology, though training and knowledge is required to effectively work with any system that uses foam. In the 1960’s development of Aqueous Film-Forming Foam or AFFF began. …
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Foam Extinguishing Systems
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Download file to see previous pages By 1979 “the Naval Research Laboratory developed suppressant was in use at more than 90 airports in the U.S. as well as in many civilian fire departments”(NRL.gov). Foam systems can be used in a wide variety of settings and can be fixed or permanent, and utilized through existing, modified, or separate systems. Many, though not all fire departments now use foam to fight fires where flammable Liquids or gases are housed in large quantities. Foams are generally divided into classes, and come in varying levels of expansion from minimal to high. Class A foams are used for typical house fires and other class A fires. Class B foams are used for fires involving flammable liquids. Foam can also be used to a limited extent for class C fires of a gaseous nature. Though foam is very effective if used properly, it requires some knowledge and training to achieve optimal results. This is because the foam must be mixed with water and a certain amount of oxygen for the desired effect. It is the oxygen content that determines the characteristics of the foam and differing effects such as “cooling, suffocating, separating, restraining and displacing”(Marioff). In large fixed extinguishing systems foam is mixed with water, then moved to foam Generators where air is then added. Facilities that typically contain fixed systems are aircraft hangers, oil refineries, laboratories, hazardous material storage and large garages. Foaming agents can also be used in sprinkler, water, and semi-fixed systems which contain predetermined amounts of foam. This type of system is more typical in a multilevel office building, hospital or other business. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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