Siqura hotspot detection solutions offer safety and security in a growing number of sectors
For Siqura, hotspot detection solutions (with the goal of fire prevention) are a growing market, expanding into a great variety of other sectors beyond Maritime and Oil & Gas safety and ATEX, where it all once began. Rudy Saarloos is customer support engineer working on hotspot detection cameras at Siqura. He explains why wide application of this type of camera is sensible.
Nowadays, there are many types of material whose internal temperature can increase to the point where they begin to burn spontaneously. The resulting fire and intense heat can cause nearby material to ignite. Ultimately an entire warehouse, storage area or industrial installation can be destroyed.
The disadvantage of fire alarms and fire-fighting systems is that they only start to operate when a fire already exists. Thermal imaging can help to detect hotspots before a fire occurs, so that the necessary measures can be taken.
Rudy Saarloos: “Maritime and Oil & Gas are sectors where hotspot detection has traditionally been used and where it is omnipresent. However, today we are experiencing a growing demand from new sectors. And our hotspot detection solutions produce results. Just the other day, one of our customers in waste collection and processing was able to overcome an emerging incident because of the timely detection of a major hotspot by our camera system.”
The number of possible applications is endless. Examples are bulk storage monitoring in large storage areas such as waste bunkers, wood or paper stockpiles, as well as cement and coal storage yards. Also, coal belt monitoring during the transport to control the risk of spontaneous combustion. In fact, any industry with some type of storage area where goods or material is kept, is at risk of material self-combustion. Typical examples of this are storage of splint wood, batteries, waste recycling materials and coal.
“Siqura has a wide range of heat-sensing cameras which can detect a difference in temperature as small as half a degree Celsius”, Saarloos continues. “Our clients can customize the camera system according to their needs. Starting with the colour palette which is displayed on the monitor, up to the software we use, produced by our sister company VDG.
On the basis of pre-set parameters, the camera will automatically send a signal to the VDG Sense software application. Subsequently, the system will respond as programmed. An alarm could go off, a warning could be sent to a cell phone, or even the fire department could be warned immediately.”
Hotspots can linger unobserved for days or even weeks before bursting suddenly into flames. They cannot be seen with the naked eye. In most cases, a dual-camera system would be the recommended option: the housing will contain an optical camera next to the thermal camera. A human operator sitting in front of a monitor will have a hard time establishing what he sees with only the thermal image available. The extra optical image will enable him to quickly recognize what is going on, thus further decreasing response time.
Siqura hotspot detection cameras can and will provide timely detection.