MS in Fire Protection Engineering
College of Engineering
Fred Mowrer and Chris Pascual
This report is on a mission critical telecommunications network switching facility located in Southern Mississippi. The life safety and property preservation measures are summarized in this report. The prescriptive design approaches for various fire and life safety systems in telecommunications facilities were evaluated against the performance based approaches studied in the Cal Poly Fire Protection Engineering curriculum. Majority of the prescriptive approaches are in accordance with the performance based solutions, however the smoke management system’s performance and prescriptive design yields a significant discrepancy. For the smoke management system, a difference in the flow rates is observed between the exhaust and make-up rates with the use of the NFPA-92 method and the CFD model. The CFD yields the flow requirements nearly 4 times the amount required when calculated with the NFPA-92 approach. Further research beyond the scope of this report is required to factor the influence of the actual operating conditions, such as high rates of air change, the IT equipment heat load, and cold supply air. The egress provisions per NFPA 101 and the IBC are more than sufficient for telecommunications facilities with its low occupancy loads. The one concern is the pre-movement time for occupants who are intimately involved in detailed tasks when the alarm conditions occur. The NFPA 13 sprinkler, Light Hazard classification is sufficient for the administrative support area suppression. For the process and other equipment spaces NFPA 2001 provides adequate means of early suppression using FM-200 to protect the electronic equipment and minimize smoke generation and fire propagation.