Wireless technology plays a massive part in the day-to-day life of most people. Phones, tablets, computers, lightbulbs, plug sockets and even fridges and kettles are all making use of wireless connectivity to provide home automation, Internet access and more. With widespread availability and constant advances in the wireless field, it is not surprising that wireless fire alarms are becoming increasingly popular.
The difference is, if your building’s WiFi connection is intermittent, it may be difficult to work or check your emails or you may experience a bit of buffering of the music you are playing, but if your wireless fire alarm signal is intermittent, the consequences could be much more severe.
Why the Surge in Wireless Fire Detection?
Until fairly recently, wireless fire detection has come with a number of concerns about reliability and efficiency and has, therefore, only been used for very niche applications. However, with the introduction of EN54-25:2008, the way wireless fire detection systems are developed has changed considerably.
EN54-25 is a European Product Standard specifically for wireless fire alarms. This standard dictates that all wireless systems sold in Europe must have been tested by a 3rd party test house and have a certificate that states the system operates and compiles with this standard.
The EN54-25 standard was introduced to make sure that wireless fire alarms provide the same level of protection as their wired counterparts. As such, the standard has made significant changes to the way wireless fire alarms operate such as the introduction of:
- Bi-directional communication
- Dual battery backup sources
- Improved fault monitoring
- Defined product testing procedures
Since the introduction of EN54-25, wireless fire detection has had no choice but to advance rapidly and, as such, is becoming more widely used.
The Evolution of Wireless Fire Detection
Since wireless technology has developed, it has opened other opportunities in the wireless market. Many manufacturers now offer wireless detection as a complementary product to their existing portfolio.
With this, spawned the birth of hybrid fire detection systems and an opportunity to combine wireless technology to meet the various challenges that the world of fire detection presents. With the introduction of hybrid detection, the market share for wireless fire detection grew even more.
Hybrid Fire Detection
Hybrid fire detection can be used for new or existing installations:
- New Installations
Wireless technology can be used for new installations where aesthetics need to be preserved when running cables isn’t practical or in areas with limited access. Hardwired devices can be used where there are no limitations and where installing cabling can be easily achieved in order to keep cost to a minimum.
- Existing Installations
Wireless devices can be used to upgrade an existing system, whether its to meet regulations, add protection for an extension or outhouse, or to simply replace outdated devices. Using wireless devices as part of an existing installation means that no expensive cable runs are required and that the fire alarm system can be updated with little disruption.
Wi-Fyre, Eurofyre’s innovative hybrid fire detection solution, uses wireless transponders to communicate with up to thirty devices such as detectors, sounders and manual call points.
Wi-Fyre can be fully integrated into a number of system types and has six modes of operation. This means Wi-Fyre can provide full and comprehensive information at the control panel:
Modes of Operation
- Addressable (Collective)
- ProFyre 2-Wire Addressable
- ProFyre Addressable
Wi-Fyre is EN54-25 certified and meets the requirements of BS 5839-1 and ETSI 300:220 and is, therefore, fully approved for use in Europe.
Wireless technology has come on by leaps and bounds since wireless fire detection was first introduced and we don’t expect it to stop there. We are excited about the potential of wireless fire detection and look forward to developing our products even further.