An engineered smoke control system has a critical role and place in high-rise buildings, especially in the safety of its occupants. Most manufacturers design smoke control systems to manage the movement of smoke throughout the building, eliminate smoke from the building, and pressurise stairwells and other designated safe areas. It also aids in dividing the building into smoke management zones. The system provides automatic controls that respond quickly to changes in smoke conditions and have smoke detection and alarm systems that provide early warning of a fire.
A communication system that allows firefighters to communicate with the building’s fire alarm control panel is also crucial in safety in adopting fire and smoke control. The design, installation and maintenance of these systems must be in accordance with codes and regulations such as the BCA code and NFPA 92. It’s important to note that smoke control in high-rise buildings requires a comprehensive understanding of the unique challenges presented by high-rise buildings and the expertise to design and install systems that meet these challenges and ensure the safety of building occupants in case of a fire.
Utilising other technology systems, such as wind driven rain simulation, can affect the performance of smoke control systems and natural ventilation, especially in high-rise structures. It helps set up the standard and appropriate parameters for better ventilation design for thermal comfort. On the other hand, it produces an estimation for wind-driven rain loads on the newer establishment. It can pinpoint the potential vulnerabilities of installed systems to provide better control and movement restrictions for smoke.
Key Considerations For Better Smoke Control In High-Rise Buildings
Take note that smoke control requires a multi-disciplinary approach and comprehensive planning to have a significant impact. Here are a number of key considerations and factors for better smoke control in high-rise buildings:
Smoke Management Zones
High-rise buildings are often divided into smoke management zones to help contain and control smoke in the event of a fire. It is a dedicated area with proper smoke dampers, engineered smoke control, and a fire system that can reduce the risk. It helps secure the occupants with a safe passage for exits should a fire disaster occur.
Automatic controls, such as automatic smoke dampers and smoke exhaust fans, are critical for ensuring the effective operation of a smoke control system in a high-rise building. These systems can be programmed automatically for full control of active equipment, such as smoke exhaust fans, fire alarms and other electromechanical assemblies. Building administrators must establish these automatic controls to respond quickly and accurately to changes in smoke conditions. Thus, if you consider having an engineered smoke control system and smoke dampers, consider integrating it with other building systems for effective coordination response during an emergency.
The pressurisation of stairwells and other designated safe areas is a critical component of smoke control in high-rise buildings. Maintaining positive pressure is crucial during fire emergencies for a safer escape route, and one can achieve it with the use of electromechanical devices for fire and smoke control. It is often activated within integrated systems during the event of a fire, and most building safety codes and standard regulations recognise its impact.
If you are looking for engineered smoke control and mass engineered timber in Singapore, visit SHEVS IFT Consultants for fire risk management and control technology.