Our Fire Protection engineers perform analysis and design services for nuclear power plants, applying both deterministic and probabilistic rules and methods.  Fire Protection is unique in that it consists of not only a regulatory required Fire Protection Program, but also a collection of individual Fire Protection Systems and Components.

Fire Protection Programs are either deterministic (i.e., driven by prescriptive compliance with requirements, such as 10CFR50 Appendix R) or risk-informed/performance-based (i.e., NFPA 805).  Deterministic Fire Protection Programs apply the concept of defense-in-depth with three primary objectives: 1) Preventing fires from starting, 2) Rapidly detecting, controlling, and extinguishing any fires that do occur, and 3) Protecting the reactor and associated control systems such that any fire that is not promptly extinguished will not prevent the safe shutdown of the plant.  Risk-Informed / Performance-Based Fire Protection Programs consider risk insights and use probabilistic tools and analyses to focus on plant areas and activities with the greatest risk.  Inherent within each type of Fire Protection Program in the need to maintain compliance with licensing requirements, including configuration control of various plant drawings, databases, and analyses, for a plant conditions that are continually changing.

Fire Protection Systems typically include: a plant-wide fire detection and alarm system; a plant-wire fire water supply system, various fire sprinkler and water spray systems; occasional clean agent and gaseous suppression systems, emergency lighting and emergency communications systems; and a wide range of passive fire barrier systems that include fire doors, fire dampers, fire barrier penetration seals, cable and raceway fire wrap systems, structural steel coatings and fireproofing systems.  Many of these systems are interconnected, such as suppression systems that are actuated by the detection system.  Equipment obsolescence and system aging issues have resulted in the need to modify, upgrade or replace portions of or complete systems.  Our fire protection engineering staff provides engineering studies and conceptual designs, develops equipment specifications and design change packages, and coordinates with equipment vendors to deliver solutions for various system problems.

Fire protection engineering implementation

Our fire protection engineers also work with independent testing laboratories and material vendors to establish and qualify custom solutions for unique plant configurations, including combination fire and flood rated penetrations seals for an array of complex penetration geometries.  Our hands-on approach to managing full-scale test programs allow our engineers to gain valuable insights to material performance under actual fire and flood conditions.  In addition, our fire protection engineering staff maintains their technical edge through continuing education and service to industry organizations including SFPE, NFPA, ASTM and IEEE.

Fire Protection Engineering