A joint venture (JV) between 24-year-old South Africa-based construction access systems provider IBAS Group and Norway-based fire-prevention solutions company Fire Security aims to increase market awareness in South Africa for two fire-prevention systems developed and manufactured by Fire Security.
The JV officially started in February 2017 and, since then, both companies have been working to expand the use of their products and services.
Fire Security developed its FS1 and FS5 cable fire-protection coatings for use on insulated cables, specifically key electrical cables that are critical for the functioning of plant, vessels and equipment.
FS1, an intumescent coating, expands up to 100 times its thickness, thereby protecting the internal cables from direct contact with flames and mitigating the risks of a short circuit.
FS5, an ablative coating, protects the cable from chemical and physical reactions that consume large amounts of heat energy.
FS1 is used mainly for indoor applications, while FS5 is an ultraviolet-ray and chemical-resistant coating for outdoor applications. Cables coated with FS1 or FS5 can also withstand temperatures of up to 1 100 ºC for up to one hour.
Both systems prevent the release of toxic fumes when cable insulation burns and prevent cable trays from melting and collapsing.
Fire Security conducted tests with standard insulated cable and a cable sheathed with its coatings. In the oil fire, the uncoated cable short-circuited in under two minutes, while the coated cable continued to function throughout the fire for an hour.
The coatings also serve to seal the cable from the external environment, thereby prolonging cable life when exposed to harsh sun and other adverse atmospheric conditions.
The coating systems are easy to apply and can be undertaken while any insulated electrical cable is electrified, thereby mitigating any potential downtime associated with undertaking work on such cables.
Fire Security is also certified to undertake cable life extension services and cable repairs, with its coatings being used as the primary product.
As part of the JV, IBAS Group will exclusively market FS1 and FS5, as well as undertake some work in applying the coatings to the cables of new clients. Fire Security will assist on an ongoing basis in training, and has already certified local technicians to apply the coatings. The solution is provided as a service, with no physical product being sold. This supports long-term warranties.
The coating systems have been approved for many years by major international authorities such as Lloyds and the US Coast Guard, among others.