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Where there`s smoke, there`s a new motor standard

01 March, 2002

Where there`s smoke, there`s a new motor standard

A new European standard, soon to be published, will for the first time lay down performance criteria for motors designed to extract smoke. Until now, there has been a hotpotch of national and regional norms and requirements, not all of which have been mandatory.

The standard, EN 12101-3, has taken four years to develop and specifies requirements for different aspects of smoke ventilation systems for use in locations such as tunnels, car parks, and industrial applications such as furnaces and ovens. The biggest market for compliant motors is expected to be in building ventilation systems.

The standard allows for two types of motor: those designed to be used only in emergencies (known as S2); and those which can also be used for normal "comfort" duties (S1).

The standard also defines various performance classes according to how long a motor must continue to operate at a given temperature. For example, one class specifies that a motor must operate for at least two hours at 200°C, while another requires a motor to work for an hour at 600°C.

One of the first motor manufacturers to produce machines to meet the new standard is Leroy Somer, which has 27 years of experience of making motors for smoke extraction duties. Its home country, France, had the first national standards for motors of this type.

LS is producing two families of motors to meet the requirements of the Euro norm. The first, called HTA, is intended for dual emergency and comfort duties and has an aluminium frame, allowing it to operate at temperatures up to 300°C, with outputs from 0.4-132kW.

For more arduous, emergency-only duties, there is the cast-iron framed HTC series, which will operate at up to 400°C, and spans ratings from 1.1-400kW.

After EN 12101-3 is published, European countries have to make it mandatory within 18 months .

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