Technical Blog

Which Beam Smoke Detector is best for you – End to End or Reflective.

Choosing the right Beam for a particular site depends on a number of criteria (which will be discussed in the Blog).

While both types of Beam technology, Reflective and End to End are equally good at detecting smoke, each type has applications to which it is more suitable than the other type.

Reflective Types:

 

The advantages of the Reflective Beams (Fireray 50/100R and Fireray 5000) is that you only need cabling at the Detector end of the building and the reflector can be placed in an area which may be difficult to access in the future.

However, when aligning the Reflective type Beam, you need to have a good ‘line of sight’ for the Beam to successfully align. With the Reflective Beam, you need a 1M diameter clearance down the whole of the Beams run and ideally, you should not have any reflective surfaces down the sides of this run or around the Reflector area. Windows, glossy walls and cling film on pallets should all be avoided when using a Reflective type Beam.

If you have a roof with lots of narrow gaps (of less than 1M) through which the Beam will need to pass through, you should consider using the End to End type of Beam (the Fireray 3000). This is because the girders through which the Beam is passing can reflective Infra-Red back to the Detector and this can result in alignment issues.

End to End type:

 The End to End type Beam (Fireray 3000) is the better choice when you are faced with a roof with small gaps through which you need the Beam to pass through or you have an area with lots of windows, such as an Atrium or an area with lots of glossy or reflective surfaces.

Because the End to End Beam is only transmitting Infra-Red in one direction, any reflected signal going back to the Transmitter does not affect the Beam. Another advantage of the End to End type is that it has LCT (Light Cancellation Technology). This means that it will not false alarm if the sun shines directly onto the Receiver which other Beams can do.

The most important thing to be aware of when using the End to End Beam is that you need power at both ends of the Beam and both the Transmitter and Receiver need to be aligned onto each other.

Conclusion:

 Both types of Beam are equally good at detecting smoke, but choosing which Beam you use depends on the type of building you are looking to protect.

If you have a roof with lots of obstructions or an area with lots of reflective surfaces such as windows, the End to End Beam is the better choice.

If you have good lines of sight and few reflective surfaces near the Beams run, the Reflective Beam is a safe choice.

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