- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 15 Sep 2019
Ionisation smoke alarm
The most common causes of false alarms are:
Ionisation smoke alarms are more sensitive to smoke containing small particles such as rapidly burning flaming fires but are less sensitive to steam. As a result of this, they are recommended for use in hallways and stairwells adjacent to bathrooms or shower rooms to reduce the number of unwanted false alarms.
Ionisation smoke alarms should conform to BS EN 14604: 2005 - Smoke Alarm Devices.
Characterising smoke from modern materials and evaluating smoke detectors was written by Raman Chagger and published by BRE in 2014 states that:
|Ionisation detectors use a small radioactive source (americium-241) inside an ionisation chamber that contains charged electrodes. The chamber is arranged to allow a flow of air from outside. As the air enters it becomes ionized, generating an electric current between the charged electrodes. When smoke particles pass into the chamber the ions become attached to them and are carried away, leading to a reduction in the current. More ions are stripped away when there are many small particles, such as those generated during flaming fires. When a material is smouldering it tends to produce fewer but larger particles than it does when in flames. As these cause less current reduction, ionisation detectors are inherently less responsive to the large smoke particles generated during smouldering fires.|
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Carbon monoxide.
- Carbon monoxide detector.
- Characterising smoke from modern materials and evaluating smoke detectors.
- Domestic smoke alarms DG525.
- Fire detection and alarm system.
- Fire detector.
- Heat alarm.
- Multi-sensor alarm.
- New requirements for fire detection and alarm network systems IP 12 13.
- Optical smoke alarm.
- Over £1 billion lost every year due to false alarms.
- Smoke detection in high ceiling spaces.
- Smoke detector.
- The causes of false fire alarms in buildings.
Featured articles and news
Reminding us what is possible.
Five signs you are at risk.
Biotechnology as it applies to the built environment.
Stopping sound coming through windows.
Government response to the Building a Safer Future consultation.
Energy savings quickly payback any small additional capital investment.
Overbuild and air-space developments.
Airports National Policy Statement and its impact on infrastructure.
Organisations will collaborate on infrastructure initiatives.
Technology informs procurement and planning practices.
BSRIA releases market sector growth projections.