Patol’s experience and expertise in protecting industrial environments from the threat posed by fire has seen the company supply its Linear Heat Detection Cable (LHDC) to one of the UK’s major producers of cement.
Cemex is a manufacturer of a wide range of British cements from three UK factories, using locally quarried materials and additives to produce cements that are employed in construction projects throughout the UK. At its flagship site in Rugby, a number of plant lubrication systems are a fundamental part of an operation that produces cement and fly ash for ready-mix concrete and precast concrete products, along with a range of packed cement and cementitious products.
The systems circulate cool and filter lubricant oils around critical bearing surfaces of the site’s process equipment and, as such, require a quick and efficient method of addressing any potential fire safety issues. The solution was the Firesense range of LHDC, a cost-effective method of providing early detection of fire and overheating in applications that would not ordinarily be viable, either through the inability to sustain the environment requirements or through prohibitive costs. For the Cemex project, the Digital LHDC option manufactured by Patol was selected.
The cable is installed along the length of the lubrication systems, with alarm relays providing three states of operation: normal, fault and fire. In the event of either a fault or fire condition occurring, the PLC control system of the gearbox lubrication group is automatically placed in a ‘not-ready’ state. This shuts down the pumps, ensuring that the flammable liquids do not pass through the system before an investigation has been carried out to identify the cause of the alarm.
Patol’s Firesense LHDC can be employed in a wide range of applications but is particularly suited to those in which harsh environmental conditions prevail, where there is restricted access to the protected area and where installation of the detection is required in close proximity to the risk. All three criteria were applicable in the case of the Cemex cement plant.
Cemex is one of the world’s top global companies, with a heritage going back over a century. The company has more than 40,000 employees worldwide and has a turnover of around US $15 billion, with annual sales of some £775 million in the UK.