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Institution of Engineers Malaysia Malaysian Fire Protection Association

Kuala Lumpur, 22
nd
July 2004







Fire detection and alarm as passive system is the most commonly prescribed system for fire protection. The types of system
available ranges from the simplest one or two point manual alert system to the most complex detection, monitoring and
alarm system with interlinks to central monitoring stations and building automation and security systems. This paper focuses
on wiring practice and power supplies for fire detection and alarm system. The subject is presented as a comparative
analysis of BS5839-1 and NFPA72 and include the following topics (1) Introduction (proficiency and the law, current state
of industry practice); (2) A quick overview of BS5839 and NFPA72; (3) Circuit design and survivability; (4) Power supply,
emergency supply, fail-safe supply; (5) Cable types, fire tests of cables and installation practice; and (6) Trends.










Copyright: Ir. Looi Hip Peu, (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Mektricon Utara Sdn Bhd, No. 3A & 3B, Jalan SS4C/5, Petaling Jaya, 47301 Selangor, MALAYSIA
Tel: 60 3 78024858 / 5742, Fax: 60 3 7803 7861 Email: admin@mektricon.com
This Version: 1.00 (22
nd
July 2004)
Publication: Version 1.00 first published in 22
nd
July 2004


Page 2 of 20 Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System)






Power Supply and Wiring Requirements
(For Fire Alarm System)

Abstract
Fire detection and alarm as passive system is the most commonly prescribed system for fire protection. The types of system
available ranges from the simplest one or two point manual alert system to the most complex detection, monitoring and alarm
system with interlinks to central monitoring stations and building automation and security systems. This paper focuses on wiring
practice and power supplies for fire detection and alarm system. The subject is presented as a comparative analysis of
BS5839-1 and NFPA72 and include the following topics (1) Introduction (proficiency and the law, current state of industry
practice); (2) A quick overview of BS5839 and NFPA72; (3) Circuit design and survivability; (4) Power supply, emergency
supply, fail-safe supply; (5) Cable types, fire tests of cables and installation practice; and (6) Trends.


1 INTRODUCTION

1.1 Statutory and civil liabilities require
professionals to have proficiency in technical
standards. Fire Protection is an important component
in the design of building systems. In Malaysia, the
requirement for fire protection is made mandatory under
the provision of the following Acts:



The Fire Services Act; Act 341, 1988 and Fire
Certificate Regulations, 2001; and
The Streets, Drainage and Building Act; (Act
133, 1974) and the Uniform Building By-Law (1984)
(UBBL).
Under the provision of the above Acts,
Regulations and By-Laws, professional engineers and
architects are the principals responsible for the
implementation of fire protection systems in new
buildings. This responsibility (though conferring privilege
on the professional) carries liabilities which is both
statutory and civil in nature
1
.
In recent years, the submission of engineering
plans for fire protection systems requires a statutory
declaration by the professional attesting that the
systems are designed to and (in the final act of C.F.
certification) installed in conformity with accepted
technical standards. Proficiency in technical standards
are therefore very important expertise required of the
building services engineer.

1.2 Current state of the fire protection Industry is
less than satisfactory Without denigrating the
profession (and apologies to professionals who are
steadfast in their commitment to high standards of
technical expertise and professionalism), it is the
personal opinion of the author that current standards of
practice in the fire protection industry (in Malaysia) is
less than satisfactory:
Fire protection system as an engineering science
do not attract as much attention as other engineered
systems such as ACMV and Electrical. This result in
less attention spent on design, specifying, updating
knowledge and attending CPD on fire protection.
Knowledge of and proficiency in technical
standards of fire protection systems is inadequate or
outdated even amongst practicing professionals. This
is especially evocative given the relative lack of CPD
courses on technical standards and design issues on
fire protection compared with other engineering
sciences such as electrical engineering and ACMV. A
quick survey of current design practice find wide
gaps between actual practice and practice
prescribed in international standards.
2


1
The right to submit engineering or architectural plans
granted by the law is a privilege which can be said to be
economically exclusive in nature. Liabilities concomitant to
such privilege are (1) Statutory and (2) Civil. Statutory
liabilities pertain to responsibilities arising from The
Engineers /Architects Acts, The UBBL, and The Fire Services
Act. Civil liabilities stem from The Civil Law Act which
requires that persons practicing a vocation as a professional
owes a duty of care to the public. In the first case, the
government can punish the offender by deregistration and/or
fine whilst in the second case, the public can sue the offender
for negligence and damages.

Copyright; All rights reserved
Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 1.00 (July 2004)


2
Gaps between actual design practice and technical
standards; anecdotal survey by the author in his capacity as
Project Management Consultant overseeing works by more
than 25 different consultants for small and large projects (from
RM10 million to RM600million) in the period from 1999 to
2004. This is especially pertinent given that the submitting
professional has to declare that systems submitted are
designed to specified technical standards (BS, NFPA or AS).


Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System) Page 3 of 20






Current industry practice (at least among the
consulting engineering industry) of delegating fire
protection systems to mechanical engineers or
mechanical engineering departments constitute a
sidelining of the issues and practice of the science of
fire protection. In truth, fire protection is a multi-
disciplinary science which requires knowledge of
architecture, space planning, building materials,
hydraulics, electricity and even I.CT. Fire protection
as an engineering science deserves recognition as
a specialised expertise within its own rights.



Copyright; All rights reserved
The issues listed above have taken on particular
urgency, given current trends in the building industry
which will have wide impact on the industry:
Recent trends towards self-certification by the
submitting professional demand that cogent steps be
taken to address issues related to proficiency and
awareness of technical standards.
Globalisation and the pursuit of Mutual
Recognition Agreement (MRA)
3
will promote the cross
border movements of professionals and engineering
contractors. Malaysian professionals in this context will
therefore need to constantly maintain and upgrade
their standards of expertise to face the challenges of
globalisation.
The growing stature of the international
standardisation movements (a sub-agenda of
globalisation) is an important trend which demand the
attention of professionals. This include the withdrawal
of British Standards (which is currently the norm in
Malaysia) and the adoption of EN (European) and
International Standards (ISO) at the international level.
Malaysian engineers are therefore required to re-
educate themselves on current international practice
on fire protection. This trend is similar for the
community of civil and structural engineers in Malaysia,
who are now required to relearn decades of practice
(using British Standards and CP Codes) due to the
scheduled withdrawal of British Codes on concrete and
structures (sometime around 2008) in favour of
European Codes.
The ever increasing complexity and size of
building projects are having impact on the design of
engineering systems. Current trends within this thread
include integration of fire protection systems with
building systems, the increasing importance of
automation and total solution in building systems and
the movements towards performance based
standards
4
.

1.3 The theme of this paper. In keeping with the
theme of this seminar which focuses on fire detection
and alarm systems and with the issues described in
preceding as background, this paper will attempt to
present a summary of international practice on wiring
standards pertaining to design and installation of fire
alarm system. The presentation is structured around a
comparative analysis of BS5839 and NFPA72.
By a presentation of information in this paper, it is
hoped that Malaysian professionals in the fire protection
industry will be able to measure the gaps between
actual design practice and international standards on
wiring practice for fire alarm system.


2 BS58391 and NFPA72 A Quick
Overview

2.1 Scope of BS 5839-1 and NFPA 72 In ensuring
that reasonable care and due diligence have been taken
in the design of fire detection and alarm system,
compliance to technical standards is a key test. Two
standards of which Malaysian engineers are most
familiar are BS5839 and NFPA 72.
BS5839 Fire Detection and Alarm Systems for
Building comprise 8 parts. British Standards (similar to
ISO standards) are structured into parts with each part
containing particular aspect of the standard or code.
Each part is self-contained within its own right and as
can be seen from a listing of all parts of BS5839, Part 1
code of practice for system design, installation,
commissioning and maintenance will be the code
consulted by design engineers.

3
MRA are agreements harmonising recognition of
professional accreditation programme and technical
standards between nations. At a regional level (ASEAN),
Malaysia (led by the Board of Engineers Malaysia) is
spearheading the promotion of engineering and architectural
MRA within ASEAN. Works currently conducted by the sub
committee on MRA (current up to July-2004) include a study
of all laws and regulations prescribing technical standards
and/or pertaining to regulation of general and specific sector
of the registered professionals in Malaysia, with the objectives
of streamlining such prescription in preparation for MRA.



Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 1.00 (July 2004)

4
Performance based standards Current trends in
technical standards are now evolving towards a more
performance based approach or at least allocating larger
significance or recognition to Performance-Based standards.
This can be seen in the latest editions of BS5839-1 (2002),
EN54 (2002) and NFPA72 (2002).


Page 4 of 20 Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System)






Part 1-:-2002 Code of practice for system design,
installation, commissioning and maintenance.
Annexes (previously called Appendixes) are described
as not part of the code but provided for information purposes
only. Three annexes are included as follows:
Part 2-:-1983 Specification for manual call points
(withdrawn and replaced by BS EN54-11:2002)
Annex A Explanatory Materials (this annex contains
much of the material pertaining to detail interpretation on
locating/spacing of detectors, circuiting of devices based
on class and style etc);
Part 3-:-1988 Specification for automatic release
mechanisms for certain fire protection equipment
Part 4-:-1988 Specification for control and indicating
equipment (withdrawn and replaced by BS EN54-2 Control
and indicating equipment and BS EN54-4 Power supply
equipment).
Annex B Engineering Guide for automatic fire
detector spacing (provides a performance-basis for the
location and spacing of heat detectors with formulas and
data on heat release rate for common building materials
included).
Part 5-:-1988 Specification for optical beam smoke
detectors.
Annex C Referenced publications.
Part 6-:-1995 Code of practice for the design and
installation of fire detection and alarm systems in dwellings.

2.2 Types of Alarm System Detection and alarm
system prescribed ranges from the simplest one or two
point manual alert system to the most complex
detection, monitoring and alarm system with interlinks to
central monitoring stations, building automation and
security systems. An understanding of the type of
system possible or prescribed in BS5829 and NFPA72
is essential before an in-depth description on wiring
practice and power supplies can proceed.
Part 8-:-1998 Code of practice for the design,
installation and servicing of voice alarm system.
Part 9-:-2003 Code of practice for the design,
installation, commissioning and maintenance of emergency
voice communication systems.
NFPA 72 National Fire Alarm Code published
by the National Fire Protection Association of North
America, in contrast to BS5839 is published as one self-
contained book (as is the normal structure of NFPA
standards). NFPA72 is styled as a manual but worded
as a legal document. It is organised into chapters with
Articles within each chapter. The 2002 edition
reorganised the chapters of the previous (1999) edition
as follows:
BS5839-1 approaches system design by defining
fire protection needs based on categories of protection
as follows:
Type P Protection of Properties
P1 All areas covered with detectors except
voids less than 800mm in height
Chapter 1 Scope and purpose;
Chapter-2--Referenced publications (previously
chapter 9);
P2 Defined areas in a building having a high
fire risk.
Chapter-3 Definitions (previously contained in chapter
1);
Type L Protection of Life
L1 Same as P1
Chapter-4- Fundamentals of Fire Alarm Systems
(previously contained in chapter 1);
L2 - Same as P2 but for areas with high fire risk
to life Chapter-5- Initiating devices (previously chapter 2);
Chapter-6- Protected premises fire alarm systems
(previously chapter 3);
L3 Protection of escape routes
L4 Protection of circulation areas (2002 edition)
Chapter-7- Notification appliances for fire alarm
systems (previously chapter 4);
L5 Fire engineered solution to meet criteria of
fire safety & protection of properties (2002
edition).
Chapter-8- Supervising station fire alarm systems
(previously chapter 5);
Type M Manual System Chapter-9- Public Fire Alarm Reporting Systems
(previously chapter 6);
Suffix X System with multi-occupancy use.
Chapter-10- Inspection, testing, and maintenance
(previously chapter 7);
Chapter-11- Single- and multiple-station alarms and
household fire alarm systems (previously titled Fire warning
equipment for dwelling units in chapter 8).




Copyright; All rights reserved
Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 2.00 (May 2004)

BS5839-1 do not specify the type of system to be
used but prescribes consultation with interested parties
such as the authorities, property owner, insurance
company and others. Factors which may determined the
choice of system type include consideration for life and


Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System) Page 5 of 20






(d) Coverage Due to the structure of BS5839, part 1
by itself however do not contain detail specifications for
components of fire alarm system (such as detectors,
manual call points etc.), voice alarm, emergency voice
communication system and small alarm system in
dwellings as they are covered in other parts of BS5839.
or other BS (BS EN54). NFPA72 in comparison include
all scope not included in BS5839-1 (refer section 2.1
above). BS5839 taken as a whole (i.e. including all
parts) however can be said to be similar in scope and
coverage of NFPA72.
business risk, legal requirements, insurers
requirements, maintainability etc. Appendix A (extracted
from Annex A of Standard illustrate range of current
custom and practice.
NFPA72 do not specify the type of system to be
used (manual or automatic detection and at which
location etc) but merely specifies the performance
criteria, design features, installation method and
maintenance procedure for fire alarm system. NFPA 72
recognises that consideration for active and/or passive
fire protection system should be integrated as a life
safety plan which take into account other aspect of fire
safety such as prevention, egress, protection and
particular aspects of occupancy. NFPA 101 Life Safety
Code contains detail prescriptions on the type of
systems recommended for the various types of
occupancies. In keeping with the manual style format of
NFPA72; fire alarm systems are classified as:
(e) Language Style BS5839 is written generally in
the format of a guide with recommendations setting
out performance requirements whilst NFPA72 is written
in the style of a manual. The manual style of NFPA72
contains detail installation and design guide whilst
BS5839 is a little sketchy on details.
(f) Details BS5839 has less details on installation
and design issues keeping instead to setting broad
criteria of design whilst NFPA72 is full of details
pertaining to design and installation, example:
Household fire warning systems;
Protected premises for fire alarm systems (this
class of fire alarm include most systems designed for
apartments, offices, industrial buildings etc.); o BS5839-1 recommendations on circuit
survivability are brief clauses such as a fault on one
zone shall not prevent the operation of the system in
other zones... or A single fault shall not remove
protection from an area greater than that allowed
under 7.2(a) ... etc.
Supervising station for fire alarm system (this
include specification for communications between alarm
system and supervisory station which may be local,
remote or municipal master fire alarm panel).

2.3 A Comparison of BS5839 and NFPA72 shows
the major difference or similarity in style and content of
both codes:
Designers and installers of alarm system are
presumably left to decide on system hardware and
wiring to comply with the above.
(a) Structure of Code BS5839 is structured into parts
each of which self-contained within its own rights.
NFPA72 is written in a comprehensive manner with
chapters containing all aspect of fire alarm system.
o In comparison NFPA72 defines circuit
survivability in terms of circuit class and/or style. The
class and style designation contain details which
specifically prescribe how hardware and circuits
should be configured .
(b) Revision Cycle Editions for both codes showing
revision cycles are as follows: (g) Fire Zones Both BS5839-1 and NFPA72 contain
similar concepts of fire zone with minor differences
mainly on the system of units. Maximum area for one
fire zone is specified as 2,000m for BS5839-1 and
20,000ft (or 1,860m) for NFPA 72.
(1) BS5839-1 1980, 1984, 1988 and 2002
(2) NFPA72 1990, 1993, 1996, 1999, 2002
(c) Scope Both BS5839 and NFPA do not specify
the type of system for the various types of occupancies
or premise. BS5839 recommends consultation with
interested parties (authorities, owner, insurer etc) whilst
NFPA72 specifically refers to NFPA101 Life Safety
Code for prescription on the type of systems to be
installed for various occupancies. Thus both codes limit
themselves purely to a specification on the design
features, installation aspect and maintenance
procedures for fire alarm system,





Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 1.00 (July 2004)

Copyright; All rights reserved
(h) Classification of System Types BS5839
classifies system types based on fire protection needs;
type P for protection of properties, type L for protection
of life and type M for manual system. In BS5839-1, the
types of system determines system configuration
(detectors coverage, manual call points etc). NFPA72
do not have such a classification concept similar to
BS5839-1 but instead rely on NFPA101 to determine fire


Page 6 of 20 Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System)






needs for system configuration. Section 2.2 has details
of system types.
(k) Power supply Both codes similarly prescribed
secondary or standby supplies using batteries with or
without generator backup. Differences relates to
interpretation of operational time (which is the
operation time required after basic 24 hours quiescent
operational capacity):
(i) Spacing of initiating devices The location and
spacing of initiating devices (heat/smoke detectors) is
prescribed as follows:
o BS5839-1 is specific on spacing as follows:
o Under BS5839-1, operation time is generally
interpreted as 30 minutes of maximum alarm loads
(i.e. all sounders ringing) during fire conditions;
smoke detectors under flat ceiling 7.5m
heat detectors under flat ceiling 5.3m
in corridor under 2m wide detector spacing
may be 15m (smoke) and 10.6 (heat);
o NFPA72 defines operation time as 15 minutes of
maximum load during fire conditions (i.e. with
sounders ringing).
detector density may be generally calculated
at 100m (smoke) and 50m (heat); (l) Cables and Wiring Requirement Both codes
similarly prescribed fire rated or enhanced cables with
differences in defining performance ratings for
enhanced or fire rated cables. The definition of fire-
rating between the British (and by extension European
and IEC) standards and the NFPA (north American and
ANSI) standards has differences which will be described
in greater details in section 5.
On pitched roofs with detectors at or near the
apex distances increase by 1% for each degree
of slope to a maximum of 25%.
manual call points are recommended at 30m
travel distance.
o NFPA72 has a performance oriented approach
with regards to detectors spacing:
o The 2002 edition of BS5839-1 contain major
enhancement to the recommendations on use of
standard, fire-rated and enhanced cables. Other BS
codes are referenced in defining standard tests for
enhanced or standard cables.
No exact figures are prescribed but detector
spacing should be based on listed
5
spacing.
A figure of 30 ft (9.1m) is quoted as a guide
for spot type smoke detectors but with caveat on
complying with manufacturers instructions.
o NFPA72 contain only a brief reference to cabling
requirement. The brief referral however point to
NFPA70 (National Electrical Code) Articles 760, 770
and 800.
Correction factors to theoretical spacing (i.e.
listed or manufacturers recommendations),
include consideration for pitch roof, ceiling
heights, corridors etc. which are listed in great
details (especially in Annex A).
(m) Other Major Differences or Similarities between
the two codes include the following:
Location of additional manual call points are
recommended at 200ft (61m) travel distance
(compare with BS5839-1 prescription of 30m).
o The 2002 edition of BS5836 include major
enhancement with new subjects some of which are
not included in NFPA72:
(j) Circuit Design again illustrate the difference
between the depth of details contained in BS5839-1 and
NFPA72.
A new section address issues of false alarm
by defining false alarm and steps to mitigate such
false alarms (no equivalent in NFPA72).
o BS5839-1 contains general recommendations for
circuit integrity which are performance oriented in
aspect (refer section 3.1).
Additions to section 6 (maintenance)
champions the concept of continuous monitoring
of system functions (a useful concept where
legislative measures for re-certification or regular
certification of premise is to be enforced) (no
equivalent in NFPA72).
o NFPA in contrast though also containing
requirements for circuit survivability similar in nature
to BS5839-1 include detail classification of circuit
class and style..




5
Listed is defined in NFPA included in a list published by
an organisation that is acceptable to the authorities having
jurisdiction and concerned with evaluation of products or
services .... Examples of a listing organisation is UL.

Copyright; All rights reserved
Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 2.00 (May 2004)

Performance based design is given due
recognition with addition of new system type L5
(engineered solution). A new BS document PD
7974-4 Fire safety engineering principles in
building; part 4 detection of fire and activation


Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System) Page 7 of 20






(7) The system should be designed to minimise
disruption during maintenance and testing. It is
desirable that provision be made allowing individual
detectors to be tested without the need to sound an
alarm or to disable the particular circuit.
of fire protection system (2003) contains
guidance on development, design and application
of performance based solutions for fire alarm
system. (NFPA72 already contain substantial
information on this subject as annex).
o NFPA72, since the 1999 edition include
substantial information material for designing to
performance-based criteria.
(8) Isolation of all detectors or call points in single
zone system is permissible but facility retained for
allowing activation of general alarm from the control
panel.
(9) Provision for isolation of detectors or call
points for maintenance or testing should be such as
to allow the operation of alarm sounders in
response to the operation of detectors or call points
that have not been isolated.
3 Circuit Design and Survivability

3.1 The integrity or survivability of fire alarm
circuits. As noted in the previous section, the need to
maintain circuit integrity (BS5839-1) or circuit
survivability (NFPA72) shares commonality in concept
and ideas which are receiving increasing attention in
both codes. The idea of circuit integrity or survivability
arises from the understanding that fire can develop
before it is registered by the detectors and/or alarm
raised. The interval between the start of a fire and its
putative detection may very well damage components of
the alarm system thereby increasing the response time
to its discovery and eventual intervention by fire officers.
Such scenario is increasingly a possibility due to the
complexity of buildings and its internal space planning.
(b) Circuits containing fire alarm sounders
(1) If alarm sounders are connected to the same
wiring as detectors, then no alarm sounder should
be affected by the removal of any detector.
(2) Any sounder that is necessary in order to
reach the recommended audibility levels (65dB or
5dB above ambient noise level or 75dB in case of
premises with sleeping resident) should only be
removable or electrically disconnected from the
sounder circuit by the use of a special tool and the
disconnection should generate a fault warning at
the control and indicating equipment.
3.2 Circuit integrity in BS5839-1 is defined in
prescriptive terms which can be summarised as follows:
(c) Devices which are connected in a ring (usually
though not always for addressable systems)
(a) Circuits containing detectors
(1) Provided that the devices can receive or send
signals in either direction, they will continue to
operate even with a single circuit or high series
resistance in the ring. Such faults should be
indicated at the control and indicating equipment
within 60 min of their occurrence.
(1) A fault, or faults, in one zone cannot prevent
the operation of the system in other zones of the
building.
(2) A single fault should not remove protection
from an area greater than that allowed for a single
zone (which has a maximum area of 2,000m).
(2) Short circuit on simple ring circuit (which
cannot offer protection against such fault), should
be indicated, without giving a false alarm of fire,
within 100 s.
(3) Two simultaneous faults should not remove
protection from an area greater than 10,000 m.
(4) Removal of detectors or call point from the
circuit should cause indication of fault signals for
immediate intervention by officers.
(3) Where sounders are used in simple ring
circuits, the distribution wiring to each sounder
circuit should be protected against overload due to
short circuit by a fuse or similar device.
(5) Detectors designed to be removable from
their bases should not affect the operation of
manual call points.
(6) Malicious removal may be considered by the
inclusion of lockable device with special tools for
removal of detectors.





Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 1.00 (July 2004)

Copyright; All rights reserved
(4) Short circuit isolating devices are
recommended for protection against cable faults in
ring systems, where such device will isolate short
circuit to sections of the circuit without affecting the
whole circuit.


Page 8 of 20 Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System)






In most case, implementing measures to comply
with the above requirement involve physical
configuration of hard wiring and/or hardware which have
to be addressed during design stage. Some examples
are as follows:

Physical segregation of circuits between zone.
All sounders to be physically hardwired
separately from detector circuits.
In case of ring circuit (usually though not limited
to addressable system circuited in a loop), the above
two measures may have to be adopted (i.e. physical
segregation of circuits) despite the ability of addressable
circuits to accommodate individual devices in a loop.
Alternatively short circuit isolating devices (either
inbuilt into initiating or notification devices or installed
discretely onto segments of the ring) may be used to
demarcate segment of the ring to comply with the above
requirements.
Figure 1 Class A Circuit
Supervision is accomplished by monitoring the level of current
passing through the circuit and end-of-line resistor. The 4-wire
loop nature of this circuitry enables the control panel to
condition the looped circuit to single open and single ground
fault. This conditioning ensures that all devices are capable of
responding and reporting an alarm despite a single-open or
single ground fault.
In a ring circuit, the start and return leg of the
loop are physically routed separately.
Physical configuration of control panel, devices
and circuits allow for fault indication in case of short
circuit and removal of devices from the circuit (similar to
class A and B circuit under NFPA72 and illustrated in
Figures 1 and 2 below).


In class B circuit, increases or
decreases in the low level
supervisory current through the
circuit and end-of-line, provide
monitoring signal to the control
panel indicating alarm or fault
conditions. A single open in a
Class B circuit however
disables all devices electrically
beyond the open.

Figure 2 Class B Circuit

3.3 Class and style of circuit in NFPA72 as defined
carries similar notion of circuit integrity as in BS5839-1.
(a) Class Circuits are designated class A or B
depending on its capability to transmit alarm and trouble
signals during non-simultaneous single circuit fault
conditions:
(1) Class A circuits are capable of transmitting an
alarm signal during a single open or a non-
simultaneous single ground fault.
(2) Class B circuits are incapable of transmitting
an alarm beyond the location of the fault conditions
specified for class A.






Copyright; All rights reserved
Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 2.00 (May 2004)

(b) Style for initiating devices, notification
appliances and signalling line circuits describe
requirements in addition to the requirements for Class A
and B circuits. Styles are designated for the various
circuits depending on its ability to meet alarm and
trouble performance during a single open, single
ground, wire-to-wire short and loss-of-carrier fault
condition.


Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System) Page 9 of 20






(1) Initiating device circuit shall be Style A, B, C,
D or E (table 1 in Appendix B);
(2) Notification appliance circuit shall be Style W,
X, Y or Z (table 2 in Appendix B).



Copyright; All rights reserved
(3) Signalling line circuit shall be Style 0.5, 1, 2,
3, 3.5, 4, 4.5, 5, 6 or 7 (table 3 in Appendix B).
Further conditions on circuits prescribed can be
summarised as follows:
All styles of Class A circuits (except wireless
circuits) shall be installed with outgoing and incoming
conductors physically routed separately.
Exceptions to above (separation of incoming and
outgoing) are when:
o distance of loop do not exceed 10ft (3m);
o vertically run conductors are enclosed in 2-
hour rated cable assembly or enclosure;
o in looped conduit/raceway single drop to
individual devices is permitted;
o in looped conduit/raceway single conduit or
raceway drops or tap-outs to multiple devices
within a single room not exceeding 1,000ft
(92.9m) in area shall be permitted.
Appendix B illustrates implementation of circuit by style.


4 Power Supply, Emergency Supply, Fail
Safe Supply

4.1 Principles of reliability of power supply and
similarity between both codes. Power supply for fire
protection systems under both codes contain similar
principles of ensuring reliability of power supplies.
Primary supply source which are unreliable should not
affect the operation during normal operation and
response during fire conditions. Both codes advocate
the backing up of primary (or main source) power supply
with a standby supply with or without generator back-up.

4.2 Power supply prescribed in BS5839-1 can be
summarised as follows:
(a) Primary power connection:
(1) Cables/apparatus directly connected to a
public or private distribution supply should be in
accordance with IEE Wiring Regulations
(BS7671).
(2) Connection to the mains supply should be
via an isolating protective device (e.g. isolating
switch-fuse) reserved solely for the purpose.
Isolating device should be suitably labelled with
warning (in red) and may be enclosed in secure
box to prevent unauthorised access.
(3) The design of the system should ensure
that residual current devices (RCD) are not
necessary. In cases where RCD is unavoidable,
interruption of the general building supply in
response to a fault should not result in
interruption of the fire alarm supply.
(4) Continuity of supply to fire alarm system
should be ensured.
(5) Switching off supply due to reasons of
maintenance, emergency, energy savings etc
should not affect power to (except in unoccupied
premises with a simple manual system).
(6) In distributed power supply system, failure
or disconnection of the supply to any individual
unit should be indicated at the main indicator
panel as a fault. Any switch that can disconnect
the power supplies to all or part of the system
should be suitably labelled with warning and
coloured red.
(b) Types of power supply
(1) Normal supply should be derived from the
public supply system, transformed or modified
Where no public supply system is available,
privately generated power may be used.
(2) Standby Supplies comprise secondary
batteries or secondary batteries augmented with
standby generators.
(c) Maximum alarm loads is defined as the maximum
load imposed by the alarm system under fire conditions.
It include the power required to operate sounders,
detectors, fault warning and illumination of monitoring
devices and all ancillary services powered by the fire
alarm system.
(d) Standby Supply Generally standby supply are as
follows:
(1) Comprises of a rechargeable battery and
automatic charger. The battery should have an
expected life of 4 years. Car batteries are not to
be used.
(2) The batteries should be labelled with their
date of installation. Battery should charge up from
its final voltage in 24Hrs.


Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 1.00 (July 2004)

(3) For category M and L systems the battery
should be able to support the system for 24hrs


Page 10 of 20 Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System)






and then sound the alarm for 30 mins. If a back
up generator is used the battery should be able to
support the system for 6hrs and then sound the
alarm for 30 mins.
(3) Overcurrent protection devices to protect
against short circuit in ungrounded conductor
shall be provided.
Notes: Overcurrent protection against short circuit
protection will normally perrtain to fine-protection class
fuses (IEC standard). Depending on the location of the
circuit and prospective short circuit current, Miniature
Circuit Breaker (MCB) may not be capable of interrupting
short circuits above 6kA. However, this condition
principally relates to the North American centre-tap
110/220V system which may produce higher short circuit
currents compared to the IEC defined TN-S system
which would be the norm for final circuit for power outlets
in Malaysia.
(4) For category P the 24 hrs plus half an hour
ring applies a) providing the building is
supervised (staff monitoring at 6 hours interval)
or b) power failures are automatically notified to a
remote station for response from supervisor.
(5) For category P the battery should support
the system for 24 hrs longer than the building is
unoccupied up to 72 hrs whichever is the less,
plus half an hour ringing whatever applies. If the
building is ever unoccupied for longer than the
standby battery time and there is facility for
remote transmission then the power fault should
be remotely transmitted.
(c) Secondary Supply The secondary supply shall
automatically supply energy to the system within 30
seconds, without loss of signal, whenever the primary
supply system fails.

(1) The secondary supply system shall have
sufficient capacity to operate:
4.3 Power supply in NFPA72 can be summarised
in the following terms:
o 24 hours the complete system under
maximum quiescent conditions;
(a) Power source:
(1) Fire alarm system shall be provided with at
least two independent source of power supplies;
one primary and the other secondary (standby).
o and then be capable of operating 15
minutes of full evacuation alarm operation
at maximum connected load.
(2) Exceptions to above; when the primary
source is supplied by a dedicated branch circuit
of an emergency supply system or a legally
required or optional standby system.
(2) Secondary supply for emergency voice
alarm communication system shall similarly
operate 24 hours under quiescent conditions and
shall be capable of operating the system for 2
hours during emergency conditions. Notes: NFPA70 or the National Electrical Code (NEC);
Articles 700 defines Emergency Supply System as
essentially for emergency loads (load during emergency
condition); Article 701 Legally Required Standby System
is a subset of Article 700 system but restricted for legally
required load (communications, legal utilities etc), and
Article 702 defines Optional Standby System for loads
which may contribute to life safety but are not within the
purview of legally sanctioned standby loads.
(3) The secondary supply may consist of
o storage battery system, or
o standby generator system augmented
with storage battery of 4 hours capacity
(duration to power the fire alarm system).
(d) Continuity of Power Supply pertains to all cases
of power transfer between primary and secondary
source and can also be taken to cover power source
connected from emergency or standby system.
Continuity of supply must be maintained as follows:
(b) Primary Supply
(1) Primary supply shall have high degree of
reliability and may be either i) a light & power
service (i.e. normal mains supply), or ii) an
engine-generator set provided such generator are
fully supervised by trained operator.
(1) power transfer must be automatic and
generator must start up within 30 seconds;
(2) Connections to light & power service shall
be from dedicated branch circuits. Circuit should
be mechanically protected. Circuit disconnector
should red-marked, prominently labelled and
accessible only to authorised personnel.




Copyright; All rights reserved
Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 2.00 (May 2004)

(2) standby batteries shall be maintain
continuity of supply and to provide 15 mins.
of power supply to the alarm system and to
computer UPS forming part of the fire alarm
system.


Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System) Page 11 of 20







5 Cable types, Fire Tests of Cables, and
Installation Practice



Copyright; All rights reserved

5.1 Fire resistance or enhanced cables receiving
increase attention. Cables are the communication
pathways between components of the fire alarm system
and comprise the following class:
(a) Low voltage cable system, typically power supply
cables to control panels (110V, 1-phase or 240V,
1-phase or 415V, 3-phase)
(b) Extra low voltage (ELV) cable system, typically for
data, signalling or device power-line cables at
less than 50Va.c. or 110Vd.c.
With the notion of linking issues of fire safety and
circuit integrity or survivability, fire rating of cables are
now receiving increasing attention from both codes.
Both codes though not providing detail explanation of
fire ratings, cross-referenced other codes which have
relevance to fire rating of cables. Information on fire
rating of cables and the specification of fire rated cables
bear some difference in opinion between the European
standards (which is also the IEC standards) and the
North American ANSI/UL standards. This section will
include an explanation of fire rating of cables which are
not found within BS5839-1 and NFPA72 themselves.

5.2 BS5839-1; prescription for cables The 2002
edition of BS5839-1 contains major upgrade to the 1988
edition by recommending fire resistant cables. Fire
resistant cables are now extended to include two types
(1) Enhanced and (2) Standard. The following
recommendations are included as follows:
(a) Clause 26 now specify that all cables must
comply with existing requirements of BS6387, EN50200
PH30 (standard) or EN50200 PH120 (enhanced).
(b) All system cables including LV mains supply to
the panel to be fire resistant.
(c) Standard fire resistant cables should be
considered sufficient to meet the effects of fire with
suitable jointing and support.
(d) Enhanced cables are recommended in:
(1) Non-sprinkler buildings with more than four
phases of evacuation.
(2) Non-sprinkler buildings of greater than 30
metres in height.
(3) Where the critical interlinking paths might
be affected in unsprinklered linked buildings with
occupancy requiring supervised evacuation or
some difficulty in evacuation e.g. hospital.
Notes: In case (3) above, standard cables may be used
if network loops provide the interlink and such loops
have start and return routed separately. In such case,
the network loop is said to declassify the interlink as
critical .
(4) Where following risk assessment enhanced
cables are deemed necessary.
(e) Cable support system shall match the fire rating
and performance of the cables. In practice this may
require examination of plastic ties, trunking or clips
which may act as critical components of the support
system and which may not be suitably fire rated.
(f) No external joints shall be used. Where junction
boxes are not avoided, they shall be labelled "Fire
Alarm" and match fire resistance rating of the cables.
(g) Standard cables installed below 2m height
require mechanical protection unless surface clipped to
strong construction in relatively benign environments
e.g. offices shops etc.
(h) All conductors should have minimum cross
sectional area of at least 1mm and if stranded a
minimum cross sectional area of 0.5mm.
(i) Segregation of wirings:
(1) fire alarms should be segregated from other
services in separate conduit or trunking.
(2) Where multicore cables are used none of the
other cores should be used for other purposes.
(3) Mains cables should be segregated from
system cables outside and inside the panel. They
should not enter the panel at the same point.
(j) Fire cables should be a single common colour
throughout a building to aid identification, e.g. red.




Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 1.00 (July 2004)

Figure 3 Fire Resistant Cables to BS5839-1 : 2002


Page 12 of 20 Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System)






Fire test certifying ratings of the various types of
cables are described in section 5.4.

5.3 Fire rating of cables in NFPA72 is cross
referenced to NFPA70 (NEC) In NFPA72 only two
paragraphs described wiring requirements with a cross-
reference to NFPA70 (National Electrical Code). This
cross referencing however opens a wide topic related to
cable types and fire performance rating based on North
American (NFPA, UL and ANSI) standards. The
following tabulation list Articles in NFPA70 (NEC) which
are relevant.

Article 760 Fire Protection Signalling System

Applications Fire Test
FPL Power limited fire alarm cable for
general purpose fire alarm use.
UL 1581
Vertical Tray
Flame Test
FPLR
Power limited fire alarm riser
cable for use in vertical riser
shafts
UL 1666 Riser
Flame Test
FPLRP Power limited fire alarm plenum
cable for use in ducts and air
plenums
UL 910
Steiner Tunnel
Test

Article 770 Optical Fiber Cables and Raceways
OFNP
OFCP
Non conductive and conductive
optical fiber plenum cables
suitable for use in ducts, plenums
and other environmental air
spaces.
NFPA262,
UL910 Steiner
Tunnel Test
OFNR
OFCR
Non conductive and conductive
optical fiber riser cables plenum
suitable for use in vertical run in
shaft or from floor to floor
UL 1666 Riser
Flame Test
OFNG
OFCG
Non conductive and conductive
optical fiber cables suitable for
general purpose use except in
vertical risers and plenums.
CSA C22.2
No.0.3-M
see notes below
OFN
OFC
Non conductive and conductive
optical fiber cables suitable for
general purpose use except in
vertical risers, plenums and
spaces used in environmental air.
UL1581
Vertical Tray
Flame Test

Article 800 Communications Cables and Raceways
CMP Communication plenum cable
listed as being suitable for use in
ducts, plenums and other spaces
for environmental air
NFPA262,
UL910 Steiner
Tunnel Test
CMR Communication riser cable listed
as being suitable for use in
vertical run in shaft or from floor
to floor
UL 1666 Riser
Flame Test
CMG General purpose communication
riser cable listed as being suitable
for general purpose use except in
vertical risers and plenums.
CSA C22.2
No.0.3-M
see notes below
CM Communication cable listed as
being suitable for use suitable for
general purpose use except in
vertical risers and plenums.
UL 1581
Vertical Tray
Flame Test
CMX Limited use communication cable
suitable for use in dwellings and
raceways
UL 1581
Vertical Tray
Flame Test
CMUC Undercarpet communication
cables suitable for undercarpet
use
UL 1581
Vertical Tray
Flame Test
Note: CSA C22.2 No. 0.3M (Canadian Standard Association)
defines resistance to the spread of fire is for the damage (char
length) not to exceed 1.5 m (4 ft 11 in.) when performing the vertical
flame test for cables in cable trays.
Table 1 Cable types and Fire Tests (North American)
Details pertaining to segregation of cables similar
to BS4839-1 (section 5.2) and measures for the
mechanical protection of cables are included in
NFPA70. Articles 760, 770 and 800 however contain
more details pertaining to such installation measures
compared to BD5839-1.

5.4 Fire Tests to European / British Standards An
understanding of fire tests on cables is essential before
designers and installers can select the correct type of
cables in compliance with the code. As British Codes
and Standards are harmonising towards European
Codes (EN), a description of the fire test for EN and BS
can be taken to be similar. Table 2 describes the test
listed under the hierarchy cables specified under
BS5839-1.





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Version 2.00 (May 2004)

BS6387:1994 CWZ
Fire Resistance, with and without water and mechanical
shock; Specification for performance requirement for cables
required to maintain circuit integrity under fire conditions
Cat. C Exposed to Fire @ 950C. for 3 hours
Cat. W (1) Expose to fire @ 650C for 15 mins., then
(2) Expose to fire @ 650C with water for 15mins.
Cat. Z (1) Expose to fire @ 650C for 15mins., then
(2) expose to fire @ 650C. with mechanical
shock for 15mins.


Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System) Page 13 of 20







EN50200 BS5839-1:2002 Fire Performance Cable
Standard Grade BS5839-1:2002 - PH 30
PH30
(30 mins)
(1) Exposed to fire @ 830C. for 15mins., then
(2) exposed to fire @ 830C. with water &
mechanical Shock for 15mins.
The temperature may vary +40 / - 0 deg. C
(Test No 2. is not detailed within EN50200 PH30
but is covered in BS5839-1:2002, Clause 26.2-D)
Enhanced Grade BS5839-1:2002 - PH 30
PH120
(2 hours)
(1) Exposed to fire @ 950C. for 60mins., then
(2) exposed to fire @ 950C. with water &
mechanical Shock for 60mins.
The temperature may vary +40 / - 0 deg. C
(Test No 2. is not detailed within EN50200PH120
but is covered in BS5839-1:2002, Clause 26.2-E)

BS7629-1
BS7629-1 E1
BS7629-1 E2
Specification for 300/500V Fire Resistant
Electric Cables.; Having low emissions of
smoke and corrosive gasses when effected
by fire (Multi Core Cables)
BS4066-1-
15.5, Cat. S
Fire Performance; Test on Electric Cables
Under fire Conditions
BS7622 Cat.S
Replaced By
BSEN50268-2:2000
BSEN50268-1:2000
Smoke Emissions;
Common test methods for cables
under fire conditions,
Measurement of smoke density of
electric cables burning under defined
conditions
Table 2 List of Fire Tests under British Standards
(2) Resistance to fire & water Symbol
650C for 15mins. then for
15min with fire and water W

Figure 5 - Resistance to fire and water
(3) Resistance to fire with mech. shock Symbol
650C for 15mins. with 30
seconds hammer blow X
750C for 15mins. with 30
seconds hammer blow Y
850C for 15mins. with 30
seconds hammer blow Z

(a) BS 6387 Tests by fire, water and mechanical
shock. This test is used to determine capability of cables
to maintain circuit integrity under fire conditions.
Additional conditions of water and mechanical shock are
applied for grading of capability of cables. Code used to
designate capability of the cables are as follows:
Figure 6 - Resistance to fire and hammer blows

(b) IEC 60331 Fire Tests This test is used to
determine whether a cables can maintain circuit integrity
during and after exposure to fire.
(1) Resistance to fire Symbol
A sample of cable is exposed to fire for 3 hours at
a temperature of between 750C and 800C while
energised. After 3 hours the fire is extinguish and the
circuit turned off. A duration of 12 hours is allowed
before re-energising the cable and checking for circuit
integrity.
650C for 3 hours A
750C for 3 hours B
950C for 3 hours C
950C for 20 minutes D

(c) IEC 60332-3 Flame Propagation Tests This
test defines the ability of bunch cables to restrict flame
propagation when laid in trunking, cable trays or conduit.
The tests comprises 3 categories each determined by
the amount of combustible material in a 1 m sample.

Figure 4 - Resistance to Fire





Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 1.00 (July 2004)

Copyright; All rights reserved



Page 14 of 20 Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System)






Category A B C
Litres of combustible material in
a 1 metre sample
7 3.5 1.5
Exposure to fire in minutes 40 40 20
5.5 North American Standards on Fire Tests The
main fire tests recognised by the North Americas are the
following:
UL VW1 Single Cable Burner test
UL 1581 Vertical Tray Flame Test
The cable sample are placed vertically next to one
another on a vertical tray where they are exposed to fire
from a ribbon gas for the duration of exposure. After
burning, the samples are wiped clean to examine for
char on the surface of the cable. Charring should not
reach a height exceeding 2.5m above the bottom edge
of the burner.
UL 1666 Riser Flame Test
NFPA262, UL910 Steiner Tunnel Test
(a) UP VW1 test on a single cable. This is the lowest
grade test for assessing the fire resistant ability of a
single cable. It is also similar to IEC 60332-1. It applies
a flame (500W) to a single vertical cable sample and
assess flame spread capacity (pass or fail criteria).

(b) UL 1581 Vertical Tray Flame Test This test is
similar to the IEC60332- part 3 test for group of cables

Figure 7 - IEC60332-3 Flame Propagation Test
(d) IEC 61304 Smoke Density Test This test
measures the smoke emission from cables during a
controlled fire. The test sample is burn in a chamber
measuring 3m cubed The amount of smoke emission is
measured by a light beam-photocell which measures the
opacity of the smoke.
Figure 9 UL 1581 Vertical Tray Flame Test (CM rating)
The flame load is a 30kW burner with the vertical
samples free standing (compared to IEC60332-3 which
is installed against a wall). Optional smoke density
measurements may also be made.

(c) UL 1666 Riser Flame Test This test address the
need to assess fire performance for cables grouped in
risers. In UL1666, cables are mounted in a vertical tray
arrangement within a 19ft high concrete shaft divided
into two compartments at the 12 ft level and with 1ft by
2ft opening between compartments (to mimic a cable
riser). The ignition source is a gas flame of 155kW
which is left to burn for 30 minutes. Cables pass the
test if no flame appear at the top of the bottom
compartment during the test. Char length and smoke
obscuration, mass loss or heat release may (or may not)
be measured. Results are based on flame height

Figure 8 Smoke density Measurement




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Version 2.00 (May 2004)




Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System) Page 15 of 20








Figure 11 UL910 or NFPA262, Steiner Tunnel

Cables certified under Steiner Tunnel test are
said to be fire resistant with low smoke characteristics
and are suitable for use in plenums (space where
services pipes and ducts are routed e.g. space above
false ceiling).
Figure 10 UL 1666 Riser Flame Test (CMR Rating)
150kW burner tested for 30 mins. for cables grouped on
vertical tray in a riser shaft 19 high with bottom compartment
12 high. Criteria for passing test is the absence of flame at
the bottom of top compartment during fire test.

5.6 Hierarchy of Fire Tests A hierarchy of fire test
as illustrated in Figure 12 shows the fire performance
rating rank by fire test.
(d) NFPA262 or UL910 Steiner Tunnel Test is most
the stringent test for plenum cables. Test samples of
cables grouped are loaded into a horizontal tunnel 25ft
long by 1 ft wide (Steiner Tunnel). A gas flame of about
88kW is applied for 20 minutes under a 240 ft/min air
flow rate. Flame spread distance along the cables (from
flame origin) and smoke optical density at the exhaust
duct of the tunnel are measured. Cables are certified
acceptable when flame spread is less than 5ft from
flame origin and optical smoke density do not exceed
0.5 peak and 0.15 average.




Figure 12 Hierarchy of Fire Performance Tests






Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 1.00 (July 2004)

Copyright; All rights reserved
Note: BRE/FRS refers to the Building Research
Establishment/ Fire Research Station at Bedford, England
who set up full scale or scaled test rigs.


Page 16 of 20 Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System)






6 TRENDS and CONCLUSION

6.1 Trends in fire safety standards The evolution of
fire codes has seen steady and increasing sophistication
in terms of practice and application. This trend is due to
the increasing mass of information made available from
research and forensic studies of failures and tragedies.
Some trends which can be discerned can be listed as
follows:



(a) Though prescriptive-based codes will still
predominate in codes and standards, performance
based codes will see increasing influence.
(b) Prescriptive codes will also be increasingly
modified to include multiple scenario instead of simple
scenario in the past. Prescriptive codes with a larger
choice of scenario should not by confused with
performance-based approach. The reasons for this
trend are:
(1) Harmonisation of codes (a growing
international movement linked to globalisation trend)
will force standards to be written on a generic basis
with lee-way for multiple scenario to take into account
deviations due to national conditions and practice).
(2) Increasing information and data available will
enable a richer view of possible design scenarios.
(3) Increasing complexity of building projects
demand more comprehensive solution.
(4) New considerations such as environmental
concern and preservation of heritage are much more
important issues than they use to be.
The trend above will however demand that the
design or installation engineer responsible for fire safety
have a higher standard of technical (and interpretation)
ability. Simpler prescriptive codes of earlier times will
now be more complex with higher number of parameters
to contend with.

6.2 Unresolved topics It can sometimes be
asserted that increasing knowledge generate more
question. This can be illustrated by ongoing debate over
the efficacy of fire tests currently specified in cable
standards, pitching cable manufacturers and standards
organisation against each other (principally European-
American). It is expected that specification of fire test for
cables will see the most changes in the near future.

6.3 Concluding with a caveat on unfinished
issues not included As can be noted in this
presentation, other issues (e.g. voice alarm system,
types of detectors, type of controllers etc) pertaining to
fire alarm system are not included in this presentation.
The topics covered in this paper, by itself however,
shows more complexity than the Consulting Engineer (in
Malaysia) would be normally aware of. It is hoped that
practitioners will take note that the science of Fire Safety
as a multi-disciplinary engineering science warrants
more attention than currently being allocated.



7 References

7.1 NFPA70:2002 National Electrical Code;

7.2 NFPA72:2002 National Fire Alarm Code;

7.3 BS5839-1 : 2002

7.4 Fire Performance of Data Communication
Cables published by the Fluoropolymer Division,
Society of the Plastics Industry, Inc, Washington DC
(http:www.datacable.org).

7.5 Fire Testing of Electrical Cables for Public
Transportation Marcelo M. Hirschler, GBH International,
California.

7.6 New Developments in Fire Safety Requirements
for Communication Cables in North America and
Europe 2002, Draka USA (http://www.drakausa.com)

7.7 Highlights of the New NFPA 72-2002 in 8 parts
by Dean K. Wilson, P.E.




Copyright; All rights reserved
Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 2.00 (May 2004)




Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System) Page 17 of 20







APPENDIX A Types of Fire Alarm System, BS5839-1:2002
(Typical Application based on fire needs of premises)


Type of Premises
Lower
Risk End
Higher
Risk End
Comments
Most places of work, offices, shops,
warehouse, factories, restaurants
M or P/2M P1/M
M normally meets legal requirements.
Detection added to meet insurers and
business interruption risk.
Hotels and Hostels L2 L1
In sleeping areas L3 is the base
recommendation level. In practice this
becomes at least L2.
Pubs M L2
Pubs with no residential accommodation M.
Pubs with residential accommodation L3/L2.
Schools M M/P2/L4
Normally based on fire risk assessment
particularly arson risk. Detection also often
added if in partial use for community activities.
Hospitals L1 L1 Minor variations as per HTM1982
Places of assembly, eg entertainment M L1
Accommodation under 300 normally M. Larger
premises L4 to L1. Large premises are usually
L1.
Transportation terminals M/L5 M/L5 -
Covered shopping centres L3 L1 -
Residential care homes L3 L1 L1 for large premises
Prisons M L5 -
Phased evacuation buildings L3 L3 -
Buidings with means of escape
difficulties
M/L5 M/L4
Extra risk to life posed by such things as inner
rooms, unoccupied spaces, cross building
risks, use of automatic door holders etc.
Insurer requirements M/P2 M/P1 -










Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 1.00 (July 2004)

Copyright; All rights reserved
END OF APPENDIX A


Page 18 of 20 Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System)






B2-1/3

APPENDIX B Circuit Class and Style, NFPA72 : 2002

Table B1 Performance of Initiating Devices Circuits (IDC)
Class
B B B A A
Style
A B C D E

A
l
a
r
m

T
r
o
u
b
l
e

A
l
a
r
m

r
e
c
e
i
p
t

c
a
p
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

d
u
r
i
n
g

a
b
n
o
r
m
a
l

c
o
n
d
i
t
i
o
n
s

A
l
a
r
m

T
r
o
u
b
l
e

A
l
a
r
m

r
e
c
e
i
p
t

c
a
p
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

d
u
r
i
n
g

a
b
n
o
r
m
a
l

c
o
n
d
i
t
i
o
n
s

A
l
a
r
m

T
r
o
u
b
l
e

A
l
a
r
m

r
e
c
e
i
p
t

c
a
p
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

d
u
r
i
n
g

a
b
n
o
r
m
a
l

c
o
n
d
i
t
i
o
n
s

A
l
a
r
m

T
r
o
u
b
l
e

A
l
a
r
m

r
e
c
e
i
p
t

c
a
p
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

d
u
r
i
n
g

a
b
n
o
r
m
a
l

c
o
n
d
i
t
i
o
n
s

A
l
a
r
m

T
r
o
u
b
l
e

A
l
a
r
m

r
e
c
e
i
p
t

c
a
p
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

d
u
r
i
n
g

a
b
n
o
r
m
a
l

c
o
n
d
i
t
i
o
n
s

Abnormal condition 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
Single open X X X X X X X
Single ground X X R X R X R X R
Wire-to-wire short X X X X X
Loss of carrier (if used)/
Channel interface
X X
R = Required capacity
X = Indication required at protected premises and as required in Chapter 5
= Style exceeds minimum requirements of Class A






Copyright; All rights reserved
Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 2.00 (May 2004)



Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System) Page 19 of 20













Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 1.00 (July 2004)

Copyright; All rights reserved
T
a
b
l
e

B
2


P
e
r
f
o
r
m
a
n
c
e

o
f

S
i
g
n
a
l
i
n
g

L
i
n
e

C
i
r
c
u
i
t
s

(
S
L
C
)

B2-2/3


Page 20 of 20 Power Supply and Wiring Requirements (for Fire Alarm System)










Copyright; All rights reserved
Ir. H.P. Looi (hplooi@mektricon.com)
Version 2.00 (May 2004)




Table B3 Notification Appliance Circuits (NAC)
Class
B B B A
Style
W X Y Z

T
r
o
u
b
l
e

i
n
d
i
c
a
t
i
o
n

a
t

p
r
o
t
e
c
t
e
d

p
r
e
m
i
s
e
s

A
l
a
r
m

c
a
p
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

d
u
r
i
n
g

a
b
n
o
r
m
a
l

c
o
n
d
i
t
i
o
n
s

T
r
o
u
b
l
e

i
n
d
i
c
a
t
i
o
n

a
t

p
r
o
t
e
c
t
e
d

p
r
e
m
i
s
e
s

A
l
a
r
m

c
a
p
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

d
u
r
i
n
g

a
b
n
o
r
m
a
l

c
o
n
d
i
t
i
o
n
s

T
r
o
u
b
l
e

i
n
d
i
c
a
t
i
o
n

a
t

p
r
o
t
e
c
t
e
d

p
r
e
m
i
s
e
s

A
l
a
r
m

c
a
p
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

d
u
r
i
n
g

a
b
n
o
r
m
a
l

c
o
n
d
i
t
i
o
n
s

T
r
o
u
b
l
e

i
n
d
i
c
a
t
i
o
n

a
t

p
r
o
t
e
c
t
e
d

p
r
e
m
i
s
e
s

A
l
a
r
m

c
a
p
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

d
u
r
i
n
g

a
b
n
o
r
m
a
l

c
o
n
d
i
t
i
o
n
s

Abnormal condition 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Single open X X X X X X
Single ground X X X X X X
Wire-to-wire short X X X X
X = Indication required at protected premises and as required in Chapter 5















END OF APPENDIX B
B2-1/3

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