Fm200 – Still going strong

FM200 – Still going strong!

In our last post we looked at the news that Du-Pont were increasing the price of FM200 and as it turned out it was a very substantial rise approximately 40% per Kg! Although this came a bit of a shock for the industry (me included), as prices have been decreasing over the years, what practical effect has this had?

Cost Analysis

Well although the cost of FM200 has gone up 40% it hasn’t had quite the impact of pricing itself out of the market yet. All designs we have looked at comparing the cost of the Fire Suppression Agents it still is cheaper than the alternatives of Inert Gas (IG55 & IG541) and Novec 1230, although there isn’t a massive amount of difference especially with inert gas.

As an example, the last design we did which showed all three products Inert Gas was still 10% more expensive than FM200 and Novec 1230 a massive 22% more!! Although this can alter from design to design it looks like Du Pont won’t be dropping the price too quickly.

Although we are in a competitive world, cost isn’t always the answer. There are many advantages and disadvantages to all the Fire Suppression Agents and care should be taken to ensure lower installation costs don’t turn into higher on going costs.

As a brief overview of the three main products we use in commercial Fire Suppression Applications such as server rooms, data halls and switch gear rooms please see below for some of the main advantages and disadvantages. If you would like to know more on a particular product then click the product name or contact us directly.

Product Analysis

There are many advantages and disadvantages for all three products, but the main ones are:-

FM200 FM200

Advantages

Readily Available
Efficient Storage (stored as a liquid)
Tried and Tested

Disadvantages

The least environmentally friendly of the three
Comes under “F Gas” Regulations
Cylinders usually need to be distributed throughout the room

Inert Gas (ProInert) ProInert IG55

Advantages

Cylinders can be located away from the room
The ultimate environmental product
Multiple rooms can be protected by one bank of cylinders

Disadvantages

Requires many more cylinders than FM200 or Novec 1230
Always requires Over Pressure Vents
Requires more nozzles

Novec 1230 Novec 1230 Cylinders

Advantages

Better environmental credentials than FM200
Requires less cylinders than Inert Gas
Requires less nozzles

Disadvantages

Requires larger pipework than FM200
Cylinder must be located very close to the room
Requires more agent than FM200

There are of course many other advantages and disadvantages but these are just a few. We find that many clients already have a pre-conceived idea of what each product does based on what the last company they spoke to wanted to sell them!

At Concept Fire Suppression we like to give a complete picture to ensure you get the best solution to your problem

If you want more information then contact us directly, by phone or e-mail.

Comments

    • Below is a list of basic technical diffrences between the 2 Fire Suppression Agents FM200 and Novec 1230:-

      FM200 Novec 1230
      Name HFC227ea Novec 1230
      Stored As Liquid Liquid
      Boiling Point -16.4 degrees C 49 degrees C
      Used Concentrations 6.4%-8.7% 4%-6%
      NOAEL 9% 10%
      Safety Margin 3%-9% 67%-150%
      Ozone Depletion Potential 0 0
      Global Warming Potential 3500 1
      Atmospheric Lifetime 33years 3-5 days

    • Ahmed,
      You will need to trained on how to design FM200 Systems. This can be done by the manufacturers or please contact us and we can design and supply systems for you. Just fill out the Send An Enquiry on the FM200 Product page and we will send you a proposal.

  1. Sir; For battery room and server room where human occupancy is less, we are proposing FM200 System as we feel that it will have more advantages over Inert Gas. Is this assumption right ? Kindly advice

    • Hi Osama,
      Thanks for your comment.

      Over the years Fire Suppression Agents have improved as our requirements for better environmentally products has changed.

      Halon was the most efficient agent but as it was Ozone Depleting it has now been removed as a product we can use.

      A number of other agents came out to replace Halon of which FM200 became the most popular. Although it is not Ozone Depleting it stays in the atmosphere for up to 36 years.

      Novec 1230 from 3M is a relatively new agent and like FM200 is not Ozone Depleting and only stays in the atmosphere for 3-5 days so is an improvement on FM200.

      The ultimate agent for the environment is Inert Gas. This can come in a multitude of products such as IG55, Inergen, IG541, IG100 etc. These use naturally occurring gases such as Argon and Nitrogen and therefore have no effect on the environment.

      There is a term called Global Warming Potential (GWP) which is the grade we use of an agent for the environment which I have listed below:-

      Inert Gas 0
      Novec 1230 1
      FM200 3500
      Halon 6900

      As you can see there is a big difference between the products but although FM200 is quite high if you take into account that the environmental effects of a fire are greater than the effects of discharging FM200 to put out the fire you are offsetting one against the other.

      I hope we have provided enough information to answer your question if you require anything else please do not hesitate to contact us.

      Thanks

  2. Kindly provide me with technical resposes to the following related to NOVE 1230

    1-Novec 1230 is characterized by high chemical reactivity.

    2-Contact of Novec 1230 with water or solvents either polar or hydrocarbon could render Novec 1230 fluid ineffective.

    3-The transfer of Novec 1230 requires the use of a drier because “humid air may cause the agent to convert to acid”.

    4-Novec 1230 is chemically reactive with other fire extinguishing agents, e.g., it has been reported that Novec 1230 undergoes reaction with sodium bicarbonate. The reaction of Novec 1230 with water produces HFC-227ea and Perfluoropropionic acid, a strong, corrosive organic acid.

    5-Due to its high reactivity, Novec 1230 is the only clean agent that is classified as a volatile organic compound.

    6-Novec 1230 undergoes reaction in the lungs. Novec 1230 reacts to form HFC-227ea and Perfluoropropionic acid when it crosses the lung-air interface.

    7-Novec 1230 is a high boiling liquid (bp = 49 C). This increases the possibility of a liquid discharge with Novec 1230 compared to the other clean agents and also affects its performance.

    Thanks

    • I have not fully checked but I would think that everything you have noted here is correct but I think you have all of this out of context. Taking these items like this is like saying that if you drink too much water you will drown, or if you swim in freezing water you will freeze to death, what is the relevance of what you are saying.

      Novec 1230 is a man made product that is designed for use in areas where the risk either of fire or the risk of loss of the equipment justifies a fire suppression system.

      All products have advantages and disadvantages and no product is perfect or suitable for all type of risk and protection.

      If you wish to raise a particular situation or concern you have please raise it in context, but please do insert irrelevant sections of manuals or MSDS sheets out of context or with asking a question.

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