Specifying smoke control systems: a complex task that you can’t afford to get wrong

Posted by Paul Compton on 02/02/16 12:00

2016_01_AJ_Spec_Common_pitfalls_when_specifying_smoke_control_systems-1.jpgSmoke control is a ‘wide science’: it requires in-depth knowledge of the building layout, the technical aspects and the bewildering array of regulations in force. Each type of building has its own peculiarities and some have specific regulations and guidance on smoke control.

Specifying a smoke control system is not always easy, and you can’t afford to get it wrong. These are life-saving systems and their failure could have dramatic consequences. And a lack of confidence or knowledge can lead to over-specification with consequent unnecessary costs.

In a recent article published in AJ Spec, I cover the common pitfalls in specifying smoke control systems and provide some help navigating the complex regulations and guidance on the subject.

An area of smoke control that presents a particular challenge is the choice between pressurisation and shaft systems in high-rise residential buildings. You need to consider the legislation and standards, building configuration, budget and space requirements. There is no universal “right” choice, but there’s certainly a best choice for each individual building.


You can learn more about this in our forthcoming webinar on “Protecting escape routes: smoke shafts v pressurisation”, from 12.30-13.30 GMT on Friday 12 February 2016.

Regsiter for the webinar

Paul Compton Paul Compton is Technical Director for Colt, experienced in smoke control, HVAC, solar shading and louvre systems.

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Topics: Smoke Control, Regulations, Curtains