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23-11-2019 | Issue 3/2020

Fire Technology 3/2020

Assessment of the Fire Dynamics Simulator for Modeling Fire Suppression in Engine Rooms of Ships with Low-Pressure Water Mist

Journal:
Fire Technology > Issue 3/2020
Authors:
Roberto Bellas, Miguel A. Gómez, Arturo González-Gil, Jacobo Porteiro, José L. Míguez
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Abstract

Water mist-based fire-extinguishing systems are gaining acceptance for the protection of ship machinery spaces. The use of simulation tools presents a great potential for taking a performance-based design (PBD) approach to these fire scenarios. The Fire Dynamics Simulator (FDS) is the most frequently used and validated fire modeling software; however, studies of low-pressure water mist fire suppression modeling in ship engine rooms are rare. This paper contributes to the current literature by using the FDS to model a series of fire suppression scenarios defined by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Circulars, including spray and pool fires with heptane and diesel oil, as well as exposed and obstructed fires. The simulation results are compared to data from full-scale tests conducted at recognized fire testing laboratories. Furthermore, an analysis of both the experimental and model uncertainties is carried out to assess the simulations performance. In general, a good agreement in compartment temperature evolution and fire extinguishing time is found for the modeled fire scenarios. The results support the application of FDS in a PBD approach for the design of water mist fire extinguishing systems for machinery spaces in ships. In this way, designers and engineers could model different machinery volumes and nozzles spacings that differ from those prescribed for a one story square engine room of the IMO, and, thus, predict the evolution of temperatures and extinguishing times for get the authorities approval.

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