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Report on Fire Suppression Research for High-Density

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Presentation on theme: "Report on Fire Suppression Research for High-Density"— Presentation transcript:

1 Report on Fire Suppression Research for High-Density
Storage Facilities Roberta Pilette Director, Preservation Department Yale University Library Hosted by ALCTS The Association for Library Collections and Technical Services

2 HD Library Facility vs Warehouse
Solid shelves spaced 12”-18” apart Narrow aisles due to size of materials being retrieved Long-term, homogeneous collections Warehouse Open rack shelving Large, open aisles to facilitate palletized delivery & retrieval Short-term, ever-changing materials

3 HD Library Facility vs Warehouse

4 Project Development June 2005
Informal gathering of preservation librarians to determine next steps Columbia University Harvard University Library of Congress University of Chicago University of Michigan Yale University University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign The informal gathering became an informal consortium

5 Survey Results Identified 51 institutions with high density facilities
Survey conducted February 2006; 51% responded Questions asked regarding: Type of facility Environmental conditions Age of facility Construction details regarding the roof, exterior & interior walls and overall size with regards to length, height, width Tier/shelving configuration What materials are stored in the facility and how stored Sprinkler/fire suppression systems

6 Survey Results What is stored and how
Bound items directly on shelf 68% Mss & archival collections, non-plastic containers 88% Analog audio disks, mechanical recordings, non-plastic containers 54% Microfilm/fiche, non-plastic containers 47% Magnetic media in trays on shelf 67% Oversize maps & drawings in flat files & shelves 56%

7 Survey Results Storage within the a module Fire Suppression systems
Interfile format types within a module 54% Mixed formats within a section of shelving, the shelf, or within the range/aisle >33% Fire Suppression systems In-rack sprinklers 50% No in-rack sprinklers 50%

8 Project Timeline July 2006 May 2007 Feb 2008 March 2010 June 2011
Survey results in Meeting at Yale to establish goals and expected outcomes May 2007 FMGlobal approves project Project and testing design begins; research engineer assigned Feb 2008 Update on first set of tests Lessons learned & reaffirmation of goals March 2010 All testing complete Preliminary results & recommendations presented to consortium June 2011 Final Report

9 Project Goals Provide fire protection options for a typical high-bay, high-density storage arrangement Develop loss mitigation methods to reduce non-thermal damage If necessary, make recommendations for the future design of high density storage modules

10 Terminology & Test Array
Longitudinal flue Aisle Rack Sprinkler heads Transverse flue Overhead view of the shelving arrangement for tests.

11 The Tests Test #1 Test #2 Test #3 In-rack sprinklers at 10 & 19 ft
level at each transverse & longitudinal intersection Ceiling sprinklers Books in trays on shelves Test #2 Sprinklers same as #1 Books in trays & Archive boxes on shelves Test #3 Sprinklers same as #1 BUT add face sprinklers at 10 & 19 ft level

12 Results & Conclusions Smoke detectors in all tests went off prior to the first sprinkler head release. The combination of in-rack and ceiling sprinklers provides adequate fire protection. Additionally, in-rack sprinklers are effective in reducing the temperature of the racks thereby limiting the possibility of rack collapse. By adding face sprinklers it is estimated that there is 50% less damage to materials due to fire and water.

13 Other Findings Along the Way
Narrow aisles make fire fighting difficult Amount of material affected even in a small incident is large—remember this is ‘high-density’

14 Slides from FM Global tests

15 Other Findings Along the Way
Cardboard trays failed quickly -Create falling book hazard -Front of tray with barcode info is lost -Weakened trays could not be used to pull books off shelf

16 Final Recommendations
Early detection devices mean faster response and less damage In-rack & ceiling sprinklers are good but adding face sprinklers provides the best protection Local fire department needs to be familiar with facility and its potential challenges and hazards Response & recovery plan are necessary Considering replacing corrugated trays with something that is non-combustible and will not fail when wet

17 Many thanks to David Fuller, Kristin Jamison & Mary Breighner at FMGlobal; Tom Gaitley at Copper Harbor Consulting, Inc; and fellow consortium members on this project. For copies of the FM Global report contact: David Fuller Thank you

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