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RR959 - Application of a testing regime for offshore fire dampers

Fire dampers are used widely offshore as components of heating and ventilation systems yet the testing regime in place is inappropriate for offshore, where the possibility of hydrocarbon releases leading to a jet fire is high. This is because it simply uses an oven and therefore does not simulate the forces that a jet fire or explosion would exert on what is a precision piece of engineering equipment.

In this report HSL have developed and proposed a new test and demonstrated its practicablity.

To do this a standard H60 fire damper purchased from a UK manufacturer and subject to the test procedure set out in ISO TS27469, exposing it to a vapour cloud blast with an overpressure of ~0.40 bar and a jet fire test according to ISO 22899-1.

Under test conditions the Fire Dampers (as supplied) failed when subject to jet flame impingement after exposure to a defined explosion over pressure and were therefore deemed to not meet the performance requirements expected for a jet fire rated blast wall in which they may be located. As a result it can be concluded that the presence of such dampers in a performance certified blast/fire wall would negate the rating of the wall.

This report and the work it describes were funded by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Its contents, including any opinions and/or conclusions expressed, are those of the author alone and do not necessarily reflect HSE policy.

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Updated 2013-02-20