In case of fire, it is mandatory to ensure the safety of your business, staff, inhabitants as well as property. And smoke curtains are one of the best ways to do so successfully.
1) What are smoke curtains?
The smoke curtains refer to the barriers that are placed as a part of the smoke management system in some buildings. It works by channelling smoke movement in a building towards the extraction points. The smoke curtains in Sydney work by controlling, stopping and often reducing the smoke spread throughout a building.
Smoke curtains remain retracted invisibly until the time comes when they are activated due to an alarm, some detector signal or even a manual switch. They offer great flexibility for architects and designers, which is why they find more preference than the traditional non-load bearing walls, smoke screens and smoke doors.
2) How do they work?
Such smoke barrier systems work through the formation of a critical element of heat and smoke exhaust ventilation systems. This creates a smoke-free layer above the floor after removing heat and smoke and improving conditions for people’s safe escape. Hence, this kind of system allows the safe evacuation of the people from buildings. Smoke curtains in Sydney further help reduce fire damage through the prevention of smoke logging. It enables fire-fighting, delays fire spread and reduces temperatures.
3) Applications of smoke curtains:
They are lighter in comparison to more traditional fire safety products. They offer design freedom as well as openness. Below are some areas where they are highly applicable:
- Atrium, receptions and lobbies.
- Opening in walls.
- Boundary protection.
- Egress and corridor separation.
- Lifts and lift lobbies.
- Stairs and escalators.
- Protected means of escape.
4) Four main styles of smoke curtains:
The four main styles of smoke curtains available in Sydney are namely elevator, draft, vertical and perimeter. Each of these styles is compatible with several other fire safety systems. Hence they can be installed for automatic deployment in case of a fire or smoke sensor being tripped.
5) Vertical smoke curtains:
They are basically used to close off openings from the standard doorways to larger atriums. Located within the ceiling above the opening, they find themselves deployed downwards for smoke prevention before it spreads. Such smoke curtains in Sydney help divide the building into smaller smoke-containing spaces. So the occupants can evacuate themselves easily and firefighters can enter more quickly.
6) Elevator smoke curtains:
They block smoke before it enters and exits through elevator doors. Elevator shafts make the air be pulled upwards toward the roof of the building. Most fire codes need some smoke barrier over elevator doors. Smoke curtains need to meet or exceed the needs and help keep the occupants of the building safe.
7) Perimeter curtains:
Such curtains are helpful when the building consists of open staircases and escalators. They work by forming a totally independent perimeter, needing no corner posts or walls. They help slow the movement of smoke as well as flames.
8) Draft curtains:
These are static curtains that are often used in warehouses or manufacturing environments. Buildings with expansive and open facilities along with high ceilings are more in need of such curtains. The curtains work by breaking the airflow along with the ceiling.