- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 18 Nov 2017
Visual alarm devices - their effectiveness in warning of fire
The research compared the responses of a group of participants to flashing Xenon and LED devices of varying pulse durations. One Xenon device, three cool white LED devices (of 40, 20 and 10 millisecond (ms) pulse durations) and two warm white LED devices (of 40 and 20ms pulse durations) were used.
The flashing signals were presented individually to 96 participants who were seated in front of a screen and occupied with a written task. The tests were performed in high and low ambient light level conditions. The devices were flashed one at a time, and from a distance of 19m were gradually brought closer to the screen until the subjects responded. The response data was processed to identify the effective illumination levels required to alert people to the flashing signals from the six devices.
Analysis of this data revealed that as the pulse durations of LED devices shorten, the attention drawing effectiveness increases. It also demonstrated no significant difference in responses between warm white LED devices and cool white LED devices. The Xenon and 10ms cool white LED device had similar responses; however, a cool white LED device with a pulse duration of 5ms may out-perform a Xenon device.
 Find out more
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Automatic fire detection and alarm systems, an introductory guide to components and systems BR 510.
- Carbon monoxide detector.
- Combustion appliance.
- Evacuating vulnerable and dependent people from buildings in an emergency FB 52.
- Fire and rescue service.
- Fire dampers.
- Fire detection and alarm system.
- Fire detector.
- Fire performance of external thermal insulation for walls of multistorey buildings, third edition (BR 135).
- Fire protection engineering.
- Fire safety design.
- Heat alarm.
- Intelligent building management systems IBMS.
- Ionisation smoke alarms.
- Optical smoke alarm.
- Personal protection watermist systems in the homes of vulnerable people.
- Smoke detector.
- The causes of false fire alarms in buildings.
- Understanding the factors affecting flashover of a fire in modern buildings.
Featured articles and news
The phrase ‘time at large’ describes the situation where there is no date for completion, or it has become invalid.
The Maldives is under threat from climate change. Read this report from BRE on their potential involvement in the region.
MHCLG update states there are still 124 private high-rise buildings with unsafe cladding and no remediation plan.
Starting a new built environment degree? We have a wide range of resources aimed at students.
Former railway chief James Blake says trust and control are key to successful infrastructure projects.
Do you know your Rococo from your De Stijl, your Gothic from your Post-modernist?
May outlines a new funding strategy for housing associations and says the 'stigma' of social housing needs to end.
RIBA launches a consultation on a new Plan of Work for Fire Safety.
This article offers some basic rules to follow when writing your next specification.
The iconic Mackintosh Building will definitely be rebuilt, board chairwoman confirms.
The machinery used to fashion stone has changed dramatically - and so have the products.