New test furnace running at full speed

The installation work of our new combi test furnace (chamber 28) for large test specimens from the field of ventilation and smoke extraction has been completed. The first tests have taken place successfully and the furnace is already well utilized for the next months!

The initial situation
For several decades, tests on fire dampers and smoke extraction dampers as well as smoke extraction ducts, natural smoke and heat exhaust ventilators, smoke aprons and smoke extraction fans have been part of the standard repertoire of MPA Braunschweig - according to mostly European test standards. We attach great importance to the fact that our framework conditions are always adapted to current requirements in order to continuously improve the prerequisites for standard tests. Since especially in the product area of smoke exhaust fans according to the harmonized product standard EN 12101-3 there has been a steady growth of sizes in the last years, the space in the hall with the furnace, in which these fire protection tests have been carried out so far, became more and more limited.

New furnace and new location
In order to meet these changed requirements and to provide our customers - and of course the test specimens - with sufficient space and thus also to make the set-up and dismantling situation much more convenient, the new test furnace with a clear cross-section of 4 x 4 meters (width x height) and a length of 12 meters was built into our largest and newest test hall.

The advantages
The hall has a 12.5-ton crane and can be accessed at ground level via two large hall doors. This means that the test furnace can also be reached directly by low-loader due to its location at access height. The large fans and other test specimens can be lifted directly into the furnace by the overhead crane without any complications. The furnace has been designed as a combi furnace: the ceiling is completely removable and can be closed either with furnace elements or with a test set-up. Furthermore, the front wall can be removed and positioned anywhere in the furnace. Thus, the furnace size can be varied between four meters and 12 meters in length. This makes it possible to test the test component with the least possible use of fuel. Test specimens can be installed in an intermediate or end wall, which can be flamed on one or both sides. On the first four meters, a lower ceiling can be installed in the furnace at half height as a test specimen or supporting structure, which can also be flamed from the top or bottom of the lower ceiling in separate tests.

The possibilities in the tests
In addition to the usual test temperatures for fans of a constant 400 °C or 600 C, it is also possible to test in the front part of the furnace according to the unit temperature-time curve (ETK). A total of 20 burner positions are provided on the furnace, the positions of which are optimized for the test tasks described above and which can be used depending on the test specimen.

The steel construction of the furnace is optimized for the special stresses resulting from the operation of large smoke exhaust fans, thus enabling safe test operation, even in the high-power range. In the vicinity of the furnace, the required and elaborate measurement procedures are kept ready in a wide performance range for the most diverse applications and performance widths. For the operation of large smoke exhaust fans, connected loads of up to 1200 kVA can be provided via on-site power supply and via a dedicated transformer (for a voltage supply of 690 V). This expansion enables us to easily test smoke extract fans with a diameter of up to 3.0 meters and a volume flow rate in accordance with our customers' requirements.

After testing: certification and monitoring - all from a single source
Due to the existing accreditations and notification according to the Construction Products Regulation, MPA Braunschweig is qualified to carry out the corresponding certifications following the tests, which enables the Europe-wide distribution of the tested products. Furthermore, the CE certificates of MPA Braunschweig are not only accepted in Europe, but also in Australia, Canada, the United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong and Shanghai.

On request, our customers can receive not only the actual testing but also all other necessary services - such as certification and monitoring - from their contact persons at MPA Braunschweig. Please do not hesitate to contact us: we will be happy to advise you on planning and implementation.

Dipl.-Ing. Markus Rose
Tel. +49 531 391-8274
m.rose@ibmb.tu-bs.de                                 

Techn.-Ang. Michael Schynawa           
Tel. +49 531 391-5467                                    
m.schynawa@ibmb.tu-bs.de