[Land-speed] Fire alarm lite

Rick Byrnes Rick at RBMotorsports.com
Thu Dec 20 09:40:21 MST 2007

I had been looking at fire and heat detectors for a while, and had been 
assured by the guy that certifies my Halon and services CO2 bottles that a 
heat sensor can be tailored for just about any condition.  BUT, I want more 
than just a heat sensor and light.
The Ford deal came along and since we were carrying 2 kilos of H2 and a 
bunch of Helox that was 40% O2 I had even more concerns so one of my 
assignments was to look for flame sensors for an almost invisable H2 fire. 
I found some UV and IR sensors, but cost of  2K made it a bit costly for 
even this well funded program.
The alternative is a SMOKE detector.  A Brilliant, cost effective choice. 
If something burns, smoke is almost immediately present.  We used an Orbis 
smoke detector, made by Apollo Fire detectors in the UK.  (I did not select 
this method or unit, but felt quite comfortable with it)  It will also be 
good for Methanol fire that is also not very visable.
The rest of the system is automatic with an electric solenoid that I put 
together with the help of Bob Stroud.  His company now owns Phoenix fire 
systems and the previous owner came up with a concept that we used on a 10 
pound bottle in the motor bay.  (Like in my car, everything dangerous was 
behind me and the firewall.)
The early testing I did proved the plunger would pierce the bottle seal, and 
I was quite comfortable with the system.  It would be dispensing Halon long 
before I could activate something.
I have purchased a few of the basic solenoids and am working with Bob to 
provide some parts for him to further test and prove out.
This system Will be on my linerwannabe when we come out in the springtime. 
The last part of the system was a light to tell me the system had activated. 
The Ford software guys also had it shut down the entire system.  All 
electrical and gas connections were closed in emergency timing.  (a much 
harder shut down than normal in a fuel cell vehicle.)
I attached a photo of the firebottle with solenoid mounted, but only Doug 
will see it.  If anyone wants, we can start a thread on Landracing.com for 
discussion and photos.  I have learned a little, but I'm sure there are more 
knowledgable guys on this subject and I'm always open for learning more.

Best regards


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