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Integrity Testing

We at 8 Solutions understand that the successful extinguishing of a fire by a gaseous extinguishing system is dependent on the extinguishing concentration being maintained within the data centre space for a specified period after discharge.  A retention time of ten minutes (minimum) applies in most cases.  Failure to do so may result in reignition and fire spread and could cause down-time and damage in the mission critical environment.

Integrity testing using door fan methodology provides a means of predicting the retention time without the need to release the extinguishing gas.  It is a requirement of all relevant British, European and International Standards that integrity tests be conducted on initial installation and thereafter at annual intervals – 8 Solutions have technicians that are fully qualified and trained to Retrotec level 2 and 3 to perform this procedure.

This test methodology is in accordance with the general requirements specified in the relevant parts of BS 5306, BS: ISO 14520, NFPA 12A, NFPA 2001, ISO: 1520 and the BFPSA Code of Practice for Gaseous Extinguishing Systems.  It is applicable to all extinguishing gases (e.g. halon1301, FM200, argonite) and can be used for descending interface, mechanical mixing and extended discharge applications.

Before any work is performed, the highly trained 8 Solutions engineers will perform onsite Dynamic Risk Assessments – this is a standard operational procedure, documentation will be available for auditing purposes.

The specialist door fan equipment is located in a doorway to the Data Centre to create small pressure differentials between the enclosure and surrounding areas.  Pressure and airflow measurements are made from which the leakage characteristics of the enclosure are established.  The predicted retention time is calculated from these leakage characteristics and the enclosure and extinguishing system data.

If an area of failure is identified within the Data Centre 8 Solutions will rectify the issue within a 2-hour-window if feasible – this to be assessed on a site-by-site basis.

A written test report is then submitted to the client. The report contains details of the enclosure, extinguishing system parameters, pressurisation results and predicted retention time graph.  A certificate is issued if the room passes the hold-time parameter. If the room does not pass then recommendations are given covering any leakage areas or other features requiring remedial action which can also be performed by 8 Solutions.