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Aerosol Fire Suppression for High Rise Structural Applications Via Aircraft Distribution Using Metalstorm Technology



J Brooks, J Berezovsky, M O'Dwyer


Aerosol Fire Extinguishment Agents have been under development for the last ten years. PyroGen aerosol is a widely accepted HALON 1301 alternative. In high rise buildings above the reach of ladder or aerial apparatus the fire departments are reduced to relying on stairwells to reach fires above the thirty ninth floor. Sprinklers have historically provided suppression in these structures. If PyroGen flooding systems are not installed in these higher floors, Metal Storm technology may provide a method to deliver enough aerosol agent into burning buildings to suppress the fire until fire fighters can gain access and extinguish the fire. Pyrogen grenades, hand deployed throw-in units, have proven to be effective in structural fires in rooms less than 25 cubic meters. The agent is effective at suppression and extinguishment, the problem has been the ability to get enough aerosol forming compound into the space in a very short period of time to reach extinguishing concentrations before commencement of the aerosol discharge. Metal Storm with its high firing rates and Pyrogen with its exceptional fire suppression and agent distribution properties are a solution to fighting high rise building fires in the future. PyroGen Generators and Metal Storm launchers mounted on a military or law enforcement helicopter can provide advanced suppression and buy time for the fire fighters to confront a fire in upper floors preventing a reoccurrence of the World Trade Center structural collapse. Prior to metal storm technology the ability to get enough Pyrogen into a structural fire limited the use of aerosols to total flooding applications. Suppression or extinguishment of large structural fires was just too hard. Metal Storm now allows the ability to introduce up to one thousand kilos of aerosol forming compound into a building floor in less than 10 seconds from hovering aircraft.
Special Publication (NIST SP) - 984
Report Number


halons, halon alternatives, fire suppression, fire extinguishing agents, aerosols


Brooks, J. , Berezovsky, J. and O'Dwyer, M. (2002), Aerosol Fire Suppression for High Rise Structural Applications Via Aircraft Distribution Using Metalstorm Technology, Special Publication (NIST SP), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed May 29, 2024)


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Created June 1, 2002, Updated August 7, 2014