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Large and tragic forest and brush fires seem to be the new normal. A western drought, hot summers, and high winds make for perfect fire conditions representing a year-round threat. The property damage is quantifiable but the loss of life is not.
Conventional methods for fighting fires under dry and windy conditions have changed little. These include the use of firefighting vehicles for directing high-pressure water or fire retardants at the fire. Aircraft with water scoops have been used to fight forest and brush fires under dry and windy conditions. Fire breaks are another technique used by firefighters to combat forest and brush fires. Regardless, firefighters are always at a disadvantage in the fight against Mother Nature.
A response from the Navy is a relatively simple fire fighting system that uses a jet engine to generate a high-velocity air stream. Water is supplied to a refrigeration unit and lowered to 50° Fahrenheit at which point it is combined with the air stream flowing at upwards of 400 miles per hour. An inline filter produces very fine particles of water smaller than 40 microns.
The particle size cold water droplets are driven into the atmosphere at the fire’s edge dropping the temperature considerably and creating a barrier against the fire. This, in turn, prevents the fire from spreading and the resulting heat loss will eventually extinguish or put out the fire.
The jet engine is generally mounted on a mobile platform which is towed to the fire. When the fire is in a residential or commercial area fire hydrants supply the water used to fight the fire.
- Deploys particle-sized water droplets
- Quickly lowers ambient temperature
- US patent 8,291,990 available for express licensing