As firefighters continue to adapt and evolve to meet the ever-changing challenges placed upon them, at Rosenbauer we’re constantly looking at ways to help them stay ahead. One of our latest innovations is an extinguishing system for fires caused by lithium-ion high-voltage electric batteries.
With the government mandate that all new cars must be electric from 2030, fire and rescue crews need a new generation of equipment to ensure they can safely tackle the unique circumstances caused by this new, and rapidly growing, sector of electric battery-powered vehicles.
Swift, effective extinguishing from a safe distance
Because electric batteries create their own oxygen supply, traditional extinguishing methods of oxygen-starvation are ineffective. Hence, this new piece of revolutionary technology which focuses on heat extraction through internal rather than external methods.
Precision cooling for fast, effective results
In designing this new system we wanted to ensure that the safety of the firefighter was paramount. As a result, we’ve created a two-component system comprising a control unit and an extinguishing unit.
The extinguishing system applies the water to exactly where it’s needed to cool both the cells and the modules in the battery housing.
Using the control unit at a safe distance from the vehicle, around 8m, the piercing nozzle is driven into the battery with a force of 7 tons, with the water dispersed into the battery via the perforated nozzle. Water then fills the entire battery housing to ensure fast and efficient cooling, thereby reducing the spread of flue gases.
A normal pressure pump is sufficient for the supply of water, while the tank supply of a normal firefighting appliance or rescue vehicle is large enough to ensure the effective extinguishing of a fire.
Once the battery has cooled the cell temperature to within a safe range, the extinguishing unit can remain in the battery during transport, and its eventual quarantine site. This means that water can be pumped into the battery at any time.
Key features at a glance:
- Ergonomic two-component design
- Accurate, precise activation at a safe distance
- Effective with a normal pressure pump
Andrew Smith, Business Development Manager – Fire & Rescue Equipment, said: ‘As part of our research and development, this new system has been tested extensively with a range of battery designs (pouch, prismatic and round cells) by industrial, professional and volunteer fire departments. Given the increased interest in this technology, and the rise in ownership of electric vehicles, we’re now showcasing this technology to firefighter teams here in the UK.
‘We’re also working with the UK Firefighting College to deploy it in test scenarios so that we can document its many capabilities. We envisage this system becoming an important component of fire and rescue teams, which is why we’re really interested to gain feedback from firefighter crews on this important new innovation.’
If you’d like to have a practical overview of the capabilities of this new extinguishing system, please contact email@example.com
For more information, go to www.rosenbauer.com