What the Draft Building Safety Bill Will Mean for Service and Maintenance of High-risk Buildings

Posted by Conor Logan on 25/09/20 10:15

Last month I wrote a technical review of the latest Fire Safety Bill, where I outlined the specific details of how the Fire Safety Bill legislation will be implemented and enforced.

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Topics: Smoke Control, Fire Safety

Pressurisation to productivity: clearing the smoke in F1 wind tunnels

Posted by Laurence Cockman on 11/09/20 13:30

Planes, trains, speedboats, racing bikes and Formula 1 cars might not have been what they are today if it wasn’t for a key technological advancement - wind tunnels.

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Topics: Climate Control

Corridor ventilation: smoke and temperature control

Posted by Conor Logan on 03/09/20 14:00

When it comes to corridor ventilation, two things must be taken into consideration: effective smoke evacuation in the event of a fire and preventing overheating, for day-to-day comfort ventilation.

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Topics: Smoke Control, Pressurisation, Residential Buildings, Fire Safety

Technical Review of Approved Document B (Fire Safety)

Posted by Conor Logan on 26/08/20 14:00

Back in April I wrote about the consultation that the Housing Minister, Robert Jenrick MP released inviting comments on the plans for the future of construction, encompassing the recommendations of the Building a Safer Future recommendations from Dame Judith Hackitt i.e. the forthcoming Building Safety Bill which has now had is second reading in the House of Commons.

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Topics: Smoke Control, Fire Safety

NO₂ vs CO – what you need to know?

Posted by Laurence Cockman on 13/08/20 10:00

Not all vehicle emissions are made equal. First, the pollution created in buildings by cars, vans and lorries must be detected. Once detected, we must understand which pollutants will be present in the air as a result of how the building is used. A qualified engineer can then install the optimal system to avoid the health risks associated with Carbon Monoxide and Nitrogen Dioxide.

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Topics: Climate Control

Fire curtains: What you need to know

Posted by Conor Logan on 23/07/20 10:00

Of late, there have been some high-profile news stories focusing on the fire safety of commercial buildings. During a fire, heat can cause parts of the building to collapse which can lead to secondary fires. This makes it difficult for victims to escape from the building and challenging for the emergency services to fight the fire. This is why buildings are designed with limited compartment sizes, so that there is a barrier, through the use of fire rated walls, floors and ceilings, to prevent fire spread throughout the building (amongst other fire safety provisions) – this is a branch of what is generally known as passive fire protection. Different building types have different limitations. Where the building owner, developer or designer would like to relax these limitations and have a more open plan building design, fire curtains can be used as an active form of passive fire protection – allowing unrestricted vision and movement across the space during normal building use, but dropping to floor level to seal the room off in the event of a fire to contain the heat, flames and smoke to a limited compartment, much the same as a wall or fire door would.

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Topics: Fire Containment, Fire Safety

The complementary duo: Enhancing AHU’s with a natural ventilation solution

Posted by Andrew Wright on 14/07/20 10:00

Sometimes, even a good HVAC system can be improved.

The effectiveness of a centralised air conditioning system is dependant on a number of factors and can change over time. Upon assessment, it may be the case that a system no longer operates optimally in its environment, and could be combined with another system to enhance its efficiency.

In this post, we illustrate this point, and explain how sometimes enhancing existing systems can be a great solution for industrial buildings.

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Topics: Factory Survey, Climate Control

Smoke ventilation servicing: what to expect during a visit

Posted by Tom Archer on 02/07/20 10:00

In our last post, we outlined everything you need to know about smoke ventilation system maintenance. Now, we will explain what you can expect when you set up a service contract with Colt and call out our engineers for smoke ventilation servicing.

We truly understand how valuable your time is. That’s why our smoke ventilation servicing process has been designed to efficiently ensure that your buildings are safe and legal. Knowing exactly what to expect before, during and after a visit, will put your mind at ease and help you to plan your time accordingly.

Firstly, we will outline some of the types of buildings and smoke control systems we maintain, then we will explain what to expect from a visit, and list some common issues we find during visits. Finally, we will explain how to set up a servicing contract with us.

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Topics: Regulations, service, smoke control maintenance

The impact of door size on smoke control design

Posted by Conor Logan on 24/06/20 10:00

One of the biggest challenges in the design of smoke control and pressurisation systems currently is the relatively recent trend towards installing full height doors which extend all the way to the underside of the ceiling, and/or very wide single leaf doors.

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Topics: Smoke Control, CFD, Pressurisation

Colt’s Ventilation Solutions Resolves Factory’s Excess Heat build-up

Posted by Andrew Wright on 18/06/20 14:00

The key to delivering great ventilation services is to not only focus on the functionality and efficiency of the system but to also consider the challenges unique to each company.

Through working with Cross Manufacturing, we illustrated how we can tailor solutions to resolve ventilation issues whilst taking the wider community into consideration.

In this post, we share how we delivered a ventilation service to Cross Manufacturing’s factory that efficiently resolved their excess heat build-up problem, whilst honouring their duty of care to the local residents.

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Topics: Factory Survey, Natural ventilation, Climate Control, Noise reduction

Smoke ventilation system maintenance: what you need to know

Posted by Tom Archer on 11/06/20 10:00

The failure to maintain smoke ventilation systems can be dire. After all, as we’ve mentioned before, whilst fire grabs more headlines, smoke is the real killer.

In fact, twice as many people die from smoke inhalation than they do from burns. Often smoke incapacitates so rapidly that victims are unable to make it to an otherwise accessible exit.

In this post, we will outline everything you need to know about smoke ventilation maintenance, including legislation, frequency, smoke ventilation maintenance services and more.

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Topics: smoke control maintenance

7 reasons why you shouldn't use HVAC control systems for smoke ventilation

Posted by Conor Logan on 02/06/20 10:00

Smoke ventilation systems today require sophisticated control systems with highly complex sequences of operation. HVAC control systems could be seen as a viable solution, as they can be extremely flexible and offer a high degree of programmability. However, while they may be adequate for simple applications, there are a number of issues that mean they do not deliver on all the functionalities needed for more complex schemes.

Here are 7 reasons why:

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Topics: Smoke Control, Smoke ventilation, HVAC, Controls

Parasitic loads: powering ahead with natural ventilation

Posted by Paul Langford on 27/05/20 10:00

Techniques of natural ventilation that work well in conventional power plants are becoming even more important with the growth in waste-to-energy plants. All power station operators are keen to minimise the ‘parasitic loads’ - the proportion of the energy that they generate that is used to keep the plant running and the relatively small numbers of staff that work there comfortable.

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Topics: Natural ventilation, Climate Control

Digital printing: printing to perfection

Posted by Paul Langford on 13/05/20 10:00

Ensuring stable indoor conditions for digital printing is essential and can be costly. Achieving a constant temperature is fairly straightforward but a consistent humidity level is more challenging. First developed in the early 1990s, digital printing is a rapidly growing and sophisticated technology. Fast and reliable, it is however very dependent on having the correct print room conditions. The moisture content of the paper can affect the toner adhesion, paper jams and the fuser roller temperature.

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Topics: Climate Control

BCO lecture on smoke control in high-rise residential buildings.

Posted by Conor Logan on 06/05/20 10:00

Smoke control in high-rise residential buildings is an important and, sadly, topical issue. Having recently written a post about the talk that I gave to the Institute of Mechanical Engineers on smoke control in general, I now want to focus on high-rise residential buildings , a subject that I also addressed with the engineers and, in particular, in the talk I gave to Northern Ireland Building Control Officers in Armagh.

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Topics: Smoke Control, Residential Buildings, Fire Safety