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Foam Supression System

Foam Fire Suppression System

A foam fire suppression system is a type of wet sprinkler system that combines both water and a foaming agent for large scale fire extinguishment. This water-based fire sprinkler suppression system can extinguish extensive fires in mere seconds with incredible efficiency.

What is foam?

IThe “foam” in foam fire suppression systems is an extinguishing agent that can extinguish flammable or combustible liquid by cooling and separating the ignition source from the surface. The foam suppresses and smothers fire and vapors alike. It is also known as “firefighting foam.”

This foaming agent is made up of small air-filled bubbles that have a lower density than water. Foam is made up of water, foam concentrate, and air. Different manufacturers have their own foam solutions and concentrate. The proportion of foam to water depends on the application.

How do foam suppression systems put out fires?

Foam suppression systems extinguish fire by separating the fuel from the oxygen. In more technical terms, these systems are used to “cool the fire and coat the fuel that the fire is consuming to prevent contact with oxygen and reduce combustion ability.”

To do this, the extinguishing agent (the foam) smothers or blankets the surface of the fuel. The water content of the foam then cools the fuel and the area of foam covering the fuel to prevent reigniting via flammable vapors.

How do foam suppression systems discharge?

Foam suppression systems are designed much like a wet sprinkler system in that stored water flows through a network of pipes where it is then discharged through nozzles. However, the main difference with foam systems and other traditional wet sprinkler systems is the addition of the foaming agent.

The foaming agent is stored separately from the water and the two are mixed within the piping system prior to discharge.

At the end of the piping is a nozzle. The foaming agent is added or ejected into the water at the very last moment before discharge. When the water mixes with the foaming agent, expansion occurs and creates an immense coverage of foam to fill expansive areas.