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Publication numberUS3588893 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 28, 1971
Filing dateOct 25, 1968
Priority dateOct 25, 1968
Publication numberUS 3588893 A, US 3588893A, US-A-3588893, US3588893 A, US3588893A
InventorsEdward W Mc Closkey
Original AssigneeEdward W Mc Closkey
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for detecting and locating a fire and for producing at least one corresponding intelligence-carrying output signal
US 3588893 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Primary Examiner- Robert L. Richardson ABSTRACT: An apparatus for detecting and locating a fire and for producing at least one corresponding intelligence'carrying output signal (or a plurality thereof) indicating the detection and presence of a fire in an area under surveillance by the apparatus, an the location of the fire, and, in one preferred form, effectively causing the operation of appropriate fire extinguishing means in the precise location which will result in most effectively extinguishing the fire. in one preferred form, the apparatus will also operate one or more warning alarm producing means, located either locally or remotely, in a manner providing information as to the exact location of the fire. 1n one form this may be done without any special wiring other than the conventional, already present AC power lines.

PATENIED JUH28 |9r| SHEET 5 BF 8 EDWAQD VV. MECLOSKEY FIG. l2

APPAllKATlUfi FOR DETECTING AND LOCATHNG A ll lRlE AND FOR PRODUCING AT LEAST ONE CUTlfiESlPONDlNG liNTlELLlGENCE-CAIRRYHN OUTPUT SIGNAL Generally speaking, the present invention comprises apparatus for detecting and locating a fire and producing at least one corresponding output signal for specifically located fire extinguishing purposes and/or for alarm producing purposes of either a general or a specific-location-indicating type and which includes fire sensing means adapted to be positioned with respect to multiple area portions of a relatively large area (usually a plan view area, such as the floor area of a large warehouse, storage building, factory building, or other comparable structure) in a manner such as to selectively sense a fire in any of said multiple area portions in a manner both detecting such a fire and also determining the location thereof with respect to such multiple area portionsthat is, detecting the fire and determining which of said multiple area portions contains the fire. The fire sensing means includes fire responsive effective output signal producing transducer means adapted to provide an intelligence-carrying output signal (which is intended to include the meaning of such an output signal in one or more portions throughout this application) in response to the detection and location of the fire by the fire sensing means mentioned above, with said signal carrying intelligence indicating both the detection and presence of the fire and exactly which one of the multiple area portions contains the tire In one preferred form of the invention, fire extinguishing means is provided (usually adjacent to the fire sensing means, although not specifically so limited in all forms of the invention) and is adapted to selectively and correlatedly spray a fire extinguishing fluid (usually water, although not specifically so limited in all forms of the invention) primarily and almost exclusively into a particular one of such multiple area portions in which the fire sensing means has detected'and located a fire. In this preferred general form of the invention, correlation and control means is also provided and is effectively coupled with respect to the intelligence-carrying output signal mentioned above produced by the fire responsive output signal producing transducer means and also is effectively coupled with respect to the fire extinguishing means mentioned above and includes effective servomotor means for operating said fire extinguishing means (which is intended to include one or more portions) in a selective, correlated manner whereby to cause the activation thereof and the emission of a fire extinguishing fluid such as that mentioned above therefrom, primarily and almost exclusively into that particular one of such multiple area portions of a large area under surveillance by the apparatus in which a fire has been located by the previously mentioned fire sensing means in the manner briefly referred to hereinabove whereby to cause selective extinguishing of the detected and located fire substantially without operating the fire extinguish ing means in a manner such as to emit such a fire extinguishing fluid into others of such multiple area portions in which such a tire has not been located by the previously mentioned fire sensing means.

Also, in the preferred general form of the invention referred to in the preceding paragraph, the output signal producing transducer means of the fire sensing means may be said to effectively comprise, or to be effectively provided with, effective fire cessation responsive means adapted, in response to the extinction of such a previously detected and located fire, to cause the cessation of the corresponding intelligence-carrying output signal and the corresponding cessation of operation of, or the effective inactivation of, the corresponding correlation and control means controlling the operation of the correlated portion of said fire extinguishing means so that the emission and direction of such a fire extinguishing fluid onto a particular area where a fire has existed will cease immediately after the tire has been extinguished.

Also, in one preferred general form of the invention, the intelligence-carrying output signal (in one or multiple portions thereof) is effectively coupled (usually by way of an output signal transmitting means) to one or more warning alarm signal producing means, which may be located locally or remotely or both, and adapted to produce one or more types of perceptible warning alarm signals whenever such a fire has been detected and located.

In one preferred form of the invention, the coupling of such an output signal transmitting means of the surveillance apparatus with respect to a remote warning alarm signal producing means may be by way of the conventional AC power lines provided in virtually all buildings, or the like, where the apparatus of the present invention may be provided for fire detection and surveillance purposes.

Also, in one preferred form of the invention, the warning alarm signal producing means may include a plurality of individual and distinct portions, each corresponding to a different output signal transmitting means taking a different intelligence-carrying output signal portion corresponding to a different portion of the fire sensing means and effectively cor related with respect to the surveillance thereby of a different one of the multiple area portions of the relatively large area under surveillance by the complete apparatus, such as the floor area within a warehouse or the like, so that any particular portion of the warning alarm signal producing means will be activated and energized in correspondence with the detection and location by the surveillance apparatus of a fire in that particular multiple area portion of the complete large area under surveillance by the apparatus, thus in effect, causing the warning alarm signal producing means to provide to a remote viewer precise information as to the location of a detected fire within such a warehouse or other building. The type of output signal or signals produced by the warning alarm signal produc ing means may comprise audibly perceptible signals, visibly perceptible signals, a combination of both at one or more stations or locations, or any other perceptible type of warning alarm signal or signals.

The fire sensing means of the apparatus of the present invention may comprise a single fire sensing means unit or portion actually moved in a scanning pattern with respect to the relatively large area made up by the assembly of multiple area portions previously mentioned so that each individual multiple area portion is at some time correlated with and effectively under surveillance by the fire sensing means, or the fire sensing means may include a plurality of tire sensing means portions which provide an effective but static type of scanning of each of the multiple area portions, such as floor regions of a warehouse or the like by being individually directed onto and maintaining surveillance over only the corresponding individual and different ones of such multiple area portions, and the expression fire sensing means is intended to broadly include both of these meanings.

Also, the same situation prevails with respect to the fire responsive effective output signal producing transducer means of the fire sensing means-that is, it may comprise a single such transducer means actually scanningly moved over each of the multiple area portions or may comprise a plurality of such transducer means portions each effectively maintaining surveillance over only its own different individual multiple area portion of the relatively large floor plan area under surveillance by the complete apparatus, and each such fire responsive transducer means may take a number of different forms.

In one such form the fire responsive means comprises a circuit condition altering heat responsive means adapted to abruptly and substantially change the magnitude of impedance of an associated electric circuit in response to the reception of heat (usually primarily in the form of infrared radiation although it may also include heat received by convection or conduction in certain forms thereof) in excess of a predetermined magnitude.

in another form, the fire responsive means may comprise a circuit condition altering smolte sensing and responsive means adapted to substantially change the magnitude of impedance of an associated electric circuit in response to the reception of smoke (such as that produced by a fire) which produces a predetermined opticaldensity and/or reflectivity change and a corresponding optical change in the passage and/or reflection of light with respect to a quantity of air carrying such smoke therein.

In a further form of the invention, the above-mentioned fire responsive means may comprise a circuit condition altering fire-caused acoustical vibration-responsive means selectively tuned to receive acoustical vibrations characteristic of and effectively produced as a result of a fire and adapted to effectively substantially change the magnitude of impedance of an associated electric circuit (or other electrical characteristic thereof) in response to the reception of fire-caused acoustical vibrations in excess of a predetermined magnitude.

Also, it should be noted that the above-mentioned smoke sensing form of fire responsive means may be combined with any of the different heat responsive means or with the firecaused acoustical vibration responsive means, or various other combinations of such transducer means, all within the broad scope of the present invention.

With the above points in mind, it is an object of the present invention to provide a novel surveillance apparatus of the character referred to hereinbefore adapted to maintain a rela tively large area under constant surveillance and to virtually immediately detect and locate a fire and to provide an output signal carrying information indicating the detection of such a fire and the exact location thereof, and wherein said output signal may be employed for a variety of different purposes such as for causing an appropriate and selective and limitedextent fire extinguishing action of tire extinguishing means in a manner such as to do a minimum of damage of adjacent areas which do not contain such a fire while positively extinguishing the actual detected and located fire and also which may be employed for providing either a local or a remote or both types of warning alarm signal and, in certain forms of the invention, a warning alarm .signal providing exact information as to the location of the detected fire. The novel surveillance apparatus of the present invention has any or all of the advantage referred to herein and includes any or all of the features referred to herein, generically and/or specifically, and individually or in combination, and is of relatively simple, inexpensive construction adapted for manufacture with a minimum of tooling and therefore of capital costs and with a minimum of production per unit cost and is also adapted for initial installation in a building at the time that it is built or for subsequent installation and does not require that lengths of auxiliary wire be mounted at inconvenient and conspicuous locations in order to connect the surveillance portion of the apparatus and the warning alarm signal producing means portion of the apparatus by reason of the fact that the conventional AC power wiring normally found in virtually all buildings today may be employed for this purpose. These advantages facilitate the widespread and large-scale manufacture, sale, and use of the invention for the purposes referred to herein or for any other substantially functionally equivalent purposes.

Further objects are implicit in the detailed description which follows hereinafter (which is to be considered as exemplary of but not specifically limiting the present invention), and said objects will be apparent to persons skilled in the art after a careful consideration of the detailed description which follows hereinafter, and all such implicit objects are intended to be included and comprehended herein as fully as if particularly and specifically pointed out herein.

For the purpose of clarifying the nature of the present invention, several exemplary embodiments of the invention are illustrated in the hereinbelow-described figures of the accompanying drawings and are described in detail hereinafter.

FIG. 1 is a fragmentary, perspective view illustrating one exemplary embodiment of the invention in a somewhat diagrammatic, schematic form wherein it comprises a single surveillance unit substantially centrally positioned within a warehouse or other building at a position adjacent to or a short distance below the ceiling thereof, and wherein it is adapted to maintain a substantially complete surveillance over the entire, relatively large floor area of the building and, of course, of a plurality of similar multiple area portions comprising said relatively large floor plan area. In this exemplary first form of the invention, this is accomplished by actual physical scanning movement of the surveillance unit so as to sequentially maintain under surveillance various portions of the complete floor plan area, and of the individual multiple area portions thereof, during the course of the scanning movement of the surveillance unit. Also, this view shows, in a somewhat diagrammatic and schematic manner a correlated fire extinguishing means which is of the same general type-that is, a type adapted to be capable of being moved so as to direct the emission nozzle thereof toward any particular one of the multiple area portions of the large floor plan area of the building in which the surveillance unit has detected and located a fire. This view also shows on the remote outside wall of the building a single representative one of one or more warning signal producing means adapted to be activated by the detection and location of a fire within the building by the surveillance unit. In this view, the building is shown as being empty (although normally in the case of a warehouse numerous materials would be positioned therein). This is done for the sake of convenience and clarity so that the representative multiple area portions of the complete, relatively large floor plan area of the building can be seen, as indicated by the phantom line division of the complete floor surface area into a plurality of such multiple area portions, which division it should be understood is entirely imaginary and arbitrary, and in connection with this it should further be understood that, optionally, such multiple area portions are changeable as to size, number, shape, etc. It should be clearly understood that the relative size of the complete building, the ceiling thereof, the walls thereof, the floor thereof, and in particular the size of the multiple area portions of the floor of the building and the distance of each of same from the surveillance unit and the fire extinguishing means, are greatly minimized relative to the actual size of the showing of said surveillance unit and said fire extinguishing means. In other words, the surveillance unit and the tire extinguishing means are shown grossly enlarged relative to all other dimensions in FIG. 1, and this is done for space saving reasons. It is important that this be understood since otherwise it might lead to the assumption that a substantial "parallax error of the type referred to hereinafter will exist, when actually such is very largely not the case when the real physical relatively greatly reduced size and lateral spacings of the surveillance unit and fire extinguishing means relative to all of the other dimensions of the buildings shown in FIG. I, which actually exist, are taken into consideration.

FIG. 2 is a view of a fragmentary and very largely diagrammatic and schematic nature illustrating the actual structure of certain portions of the surveillance unit shown in FIG. 1 and of the tire extinguishing unit shown in FIG. 1 and also shows the external physical appearance of one exemplary form of fire sensing means, fire extinguishing means, correlation and control means effectively coupling the tire sensing means and fire extinguishing means and physical details of the actual mounting of the fire sensing means for actual physical scanning movement so as to maintain the entire warehouse floor surface under sequential scanning surveillance and physical details of the mounting of the fire extinguishing means in a manner such as to be adapted to be moved so as to be directed toward and aligned with a fire which has been detected and located by the scanningly moving fire sensing means of the surveillance unit.

FIG. 3 is a view similar in many respects to FIG. 2 but is of a somewhat fragmentary, partially broken away and, in certain cases, sectional nature, and is drawn to a much larger scale than FIG. 2. Certain portions of the apparatus are removed completely in FIG. 3 so that the electrical circuitry and interconnections of the apparatus can be more clearly seen and understood. In this view, the fire responsive transducer element of the complete fire responsive effective output signal producing means, which element is carried by the scanning receiver and adapted to be moved in a scanning pattern thereby, is shown, but the remaining part of said complete fire responsive effective output producing transducer means which is not carried by the scanning receiver but which is effectively connected thereto by relatively rotatable slip ring and contact brush means, is not shown in full specific detail but is shown substantially in block diagrammatic form since the interior electrical schematic detail thereof is better shown in FIG. 13. In this view, the master vertical planar movement synchro carried by the surveillance unit and the corresponding slave vertical planar movement synchro carried by the tire extinguishing means and the master horizontal planar movement synchro carried by the surveillance unit and the corresponding slave horizontal planar movement synchro carried by the fire extinguishing means are all shown in very fragmentary electrical schematic form from a viewing position perpendicular to the axis of rotation of the rotor of each of same and thus the details of said four synchros are not fully shown in this view but are fully shown in electrical schematic form'in FIG. 13. FIG. 3 shows the apparatus in some portion of its normal repetitive scanning cycle of operations of the surveillance unit and all portions of the apparatus are correspondingly shown.

FIG. l is a fragnentary, largely diagrammatic and schematic view, generally similar to FIG. 1, but illustrates the apparatus when a fire has been detected and located in any particular one of the multiple area portions of a warehouse floor such as shown in FIG. I, and all portions of the apparatus are correspondingly shown. It should be noted that in this FIG., which is somewhat more fragmentary than FIG. 1, the surveillance unit and the fire extinguishing means and a particular one of the plurality of multiple floor area portions having a fire which has been detected by the surveillance unit, and which is in the process of being extinguished by the fire extinguishing means, are drawn much more nearly in their proper size ratios than in the showing of FIG. 1 and that this clearly illustrates the fact that there is a minimal parallax" error which is substantially corrected by the spreading action of the fire extinguishing liquid emitted by the fire extinguishing means and, therefore, necessarily less detail of the surveillance unit and fire extinguishing means is shown in this view, because they are drawn to a much smaller relative scale, and much less of the building is shown, since it and the floor and, in particular, the multiple floor area portions thereof, are drawn to a much larger relative scale, thus necessitating a very fragmentary showing thereof.

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary view of a largely diagrammatic and schematic nature of the warning signal alarm signal producing means shown physically in FIG. 1.

FIG. 6 is an enlarge, fragmentary, sectional view, taken substantially along the plane and in the direction indicated by the arrows 6-6 of FIG. 3 and shows certain details of the gimbaltype double ring mounting of the fire sensing means of the ex emplary first form of the invention which is a part of the apparatus for causing the actual physical scanning movement thereof. This view shows the apparatus in one part of a scanning cycle just prior to the completion of one complete scanning of the entire warehouse floor area.

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary view, generally similar to FIG. 6, but effectively comprises an operatively succeeding view illustrating the change of position of various portions of the apparatus after one complete scanning of a complete floor plan area of the warehouse of FIG. I is accomplished when it is desired for the apparatus to return to a starting position for repeating the entire scanning operation again. The structure bringing about this return of the apparatus to an initial scanning position is clearly illustrated in this view.

FIG. 3 is a top view, partly in section, taken in a direction and on a plane substantially transverse to that of FIG. 6.

FIG. 9 is an enlarged, fragmentary, partly broken away and partly sectional view of the partial gear bringing about vertical, line-by-line, arcuate-movement of the scanning means during a plurality of horizontal scanning sweeps thereof, and is taken primarily in a direction generally indicated by the arrows 9-9 of FIG. 8.

FIG. I0 is a partially broken away and somewhat diagrammatic and schematic view, taken in the direction of the arrows 10-10 of FIG. 3, of portions of the :fire extinguishing means and of the correlation and control means coupled mechanically thereto and electrically with respect to the surveillance unit so that the fire extinguishing means when activated to emit fire extinguishing fluid will be directedexactly toward a fire which has been detected and located by the surveillance unit or, more particularly, the fire sensing means thereof.

FIG. ll is an enlarge, fragmentary view substantially transverse to the plane of FIG. I0, taken substantially in the direction of the arrows 11lll of FIG. 3, and further illustrates the detailed structure of the correlation and control means and of the mounting of the fire extinguishing means to bring about the direction thereof exactly toward a fire detected and located by the surveillance unit.

FIG. 12 is a somewhat enlarged, fragmentary view of just the extreme upper stationary pipe portion of the fire extinguishing means and of a control valve adapted to be operated by the correlation and control means so as to emit a fire extinguishing fluid when a fire has been detected and located by the surveillance unit, and this view shows said control valve in temporarily open position for such emission of fire extinguishing fluid (usually water, although not specifically so limited).

FIG. 13 is an enlarged, fragmentary, and somewhat diagrammatic interior view of one exemplary form of fire responsive transducer means of the fire sensing means and shows it as comprising a particular type of circuit condition altering heat responsive means wherein heat is received in the form of infrared radiation by passing it through an infrared filter and directing it onto an infrared responsive photosensitive means taking the form of a photocell or a light responsive effective resistor or the like for abruptly altering the resistance thereof in response to the reception thereby of infrared radiation. This view also includes an electrical schematic of the various elements of the correlation and control means shown either structurally or in somewhat electrically incomplete form in FIG. 3.

FIG. 14 is a fragmentary view very similar to a small portion of FIG. 13 but illustrates a very slight modification of the type of heat responsive means wherein heat may be received in the form of infrared radiation or by convection or by conduction, or any combination thereof, and wherein the actual heat responsive means comprises an effective, normally open switch means or other electric circuit condition altering means normally having a very high resistance or impedance and adapted, in response to the reception of any form of heat or any combination of forms of heat in excess of a predetermined magnitude, to effectively close the circuit in a manner abruptly and greatly reducing the resistance or impedance thereof. In the example illustrated, this is shown as comprising a thermostatic element providing actual physical movement of at least one end thereof although not specifically so limited.

FIG. 15 is a fragmentary, diagrammatic, electrical schematic view of a modified form of fire sensing means with the remainder of the apparatus removed. for reasons of drawing simplification and clarity. In this modification, the circuitry is differently arranged and the heat responsive means is of substantially the same type as that illustrated in FIG. 14 but is of a normally closed type adapted to open when heat in excess of a predetermined magnitude is received thereby.

FIG. 16 is another fragmentary, diagrammatic, electrical schematic view of a further modified form of the fire sensing means and is very similar to the FIG. I5 form thereof except for the fact that in this modification the intelligence-carrying output signal is somewhat different and does not include a portion adapted to activate a transmitter means for activating a remote warning alarm signal producing means such as that shown in FIGS. 1 and 5, and therefore this circuit is somewhat simpler than that shown in FIG. which is adapted to activate such a transmitter means.

FIG. 17 is a view of a portion of a modified form of fire sensing means having a different type of fire responsive means which, in this view, comprises a smoke responsive means adapted to abruptly and substantially change the magnitude of impedance of the associated circuit in response to the reception of smoke producing a predetermined optical reflectivity change and a corresponding optical change in the reflectivity of light from smoke particles in the air and onto a photocell or a light responsive resistor. In other words, this fire responsive means may be used in lieu of the heat responsive means shown in the first fonn of the invention with the same associated circuitry and interconnections.

FIG. 18 is a view very similar to FIG. 17 but merely illustrates a slightly modified form of the smoke sensing and responsive means comprising the fire responsive means wherein it is responsive to a predetennined change in optical density and a corresponding optical change in the passage of light through a quantity of air carrying the smoke between the light source and the photocell or light sensitive resistor.

FIG. 19 is a view similar to FIGS. 17 and 18 but illustrates a further modification of the fire responsive means wherein it comprises a circuit condition altering fire-caused acoustical vibration-responsive means selectively tuned to receive acoustical vibrations characteristic of and effectively produced as a result of fire. The modified form thereof is shown in this view as having a directional input means comprising a directional parabolic soun'd receiving reflector and focus-located microphone fed through a tuned band-pass filter so as to operate a relay which corresponds to the light responsive resistor or photocell of the first form of the invention and which otherwise is connected to the same type of associated circuitry in substantially the same manner.

FIG. 20 is a fragmentary, electrical schematic view, generally similar to FIG. 3, but illustrates a modified form of the invention wherein the heat responsive means of the FIG. 3 form of the invention is modified from the specific form thereof shown individually in FIG. 13 to the smoke responsive form thereof shown individually in FIG. 17, and wherein an additional heat responsive means of the type shown in FIG. 15 is associated therewith and wherein the corresponding combination of electrical circuitry is also associated together, thus making the device responsive to heat and/or to smoke.

FIG. 21 is a greatly reduced size, fragmentary, somewhat schematic and diagrammatic, perspective view generally similar to FIG. 1 but illustrating a modified arrangement wherein the fire sensing means has a number of physically separated and differently mounted portions, each carried underneath the warehouse ceiling in a manner such as to overlie its own individual one of the multiple area portions of the warehouse floor area and wherein the fire extinguishing means also comprises a plurality of portions physically spaced apart and each mounted adjacent to its correlated fire sensing means portion in overlying relationship with respect to its correlated and underlying particular one of the multiple area portions comprising the complete floor plan area of the warehouse.

FIG. 22 is an enlarged, fragmentary view similar to FIG. 2 of the first form of the invention, and illustrates a typical pair of one of the fire sensing means portions and a corresponding and correlated one of the fire extinguishing means portions of the plurality of each of same comprising, in the first case, complete fire sensing means and, in the second case, complete fire extinguishing means, and in this view said two units are shown largely physically.

FIG. 23 is a view generally similar to FIG. 3 of the first form of the invention, but illustrates in an electrical schematic manner the two exemplary units shown physically in FIG. 22, it being understood that the transmitter associated with each heat sensing means portion will operate the common warning alarm signal producing means.

FIG. 24 is a fragmentary, diagrammatic, schematic view generally similar to FIG. 23, but illustrates a slight modification wherein the transmitter associated with each different heat sensing means portion provides a distinctively different transmission signal fed through the conventional AC power lines to a corresponding one of a plurality of different receivers associated with a corresponding plurality of different warning alarm signal producing means portions and is separated out or selected by the correlated one thereof so that only one warning alarm signal producing means portion will be activated by any particular heat sensing means portion which has detected a fire in its particular one of the multiple area portions comprising the complete warehouse floor. This view shows both a representative number of different heat sensing transmitter means and the corresponding plurality of warning alarm signal producing means portions and is taken to be representative of any desired number thereof.

FIG. 25 is a view generally similar to FIGS. 1 and 21, but illustrates a slightly different arrangement which is of the multiple portion-type illustrated in FIG. 21, but wherein all of the fire sensing means portions are assembled together into one centrally positioned, effectively unitary, wide angle, composite surveillance unit actually composed of a plurality of individual fire sensing means having a common wide angle input to the different fire responsive means contained therein and corresponding in number to the number of multiple area portions of the complete warehouse floor. The fire extinguishing means is still of the multiple portion-type illustrated in FIG. 21, and each of said portions is still located substantially the same as illustrated in the FIG. 21 form of the invention, and each is correlated with its corresponding fire sensing means portion of the centrally assembled, wide angle, composite surveillance unit and is electrically connected thereto in substantially the same manner as clearly illustrated in FIG. 21 relative to that form of the invention.

FIG. 26 is an enlarged, diagrammatic and somewhat schematic view taken substantially along the plane and in the direction indicated by the arrows 26-26 of FIG. 25 and illustrates the fact that the composite, effectively assembled surveillance unit of this modified form of the invention has a common infrared filtered input comprising a wide angle lens which focuses infrared radiation received from each individual one of the multiple area portions of the warehouse floor onto a corresponding one of a plurality of laterally assembled small heat responsive means, each of which is similar to the exemplary one illustrated in connection withthe first form of the invention, which together effectively comprise a multiple area portion replica locating grid composed of the plurality of such fire responsive means. i

FIG. 27 is an enlarged, fragmentary view taken substantially along the plane and in the direction indicated by the arrows 27-27 of FIG. 26 and clearly shows in front elevation the multiple area portion replica locating grid referred to in the description of the preceding figure.

FIG. 28 is a fragmentary view illustrating a modified form of heat responsive means substitutable in lieu of any of the other heat responsive or fire responsive means shown in the illustrations of the various other forms of the invention. In this view it is shown as a normally closed circuit arrangement having two conventional electrical connector elements provided with an electrically conductive heat responsive burnout membrane therebetween adapted to be melted away and/or burnout in response to the reception of heat in excess of a predetermined magnitude whereby to effectively open an auxiliary circuit whereby to cause a relay to close an associated circuit.

FIG. 29 is a view generally similar to FIG. 28 but illustrates a bumout-type of heat responsive means analogous to that shown in FIG. 28 but of a normally open circuit-type wherein there are two electrically conductive contact elements effectively biased toward each other but normally separated by a nonconductive heat responsive burnout membrane adapted, in response to the reception of heat in excess of a predetermined magnitude, to be melted or burned out and to thus allow the electrical contacts biased toward each other to close an associated circuit.

One exemplary and nonspecifically limiting first form of the invention is illustrated in FIGS. l13 inclusive and, generally speaking, may be said to comprise apparatus for detecting and locating a fire and for producing at least one corresponding output signal (which is intended to mean an individual output signal or a plurality of output signal portions) which, in the preferred exemplary and nonspecifically limiting first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. l13 inclusive is employed for correlatedly operating a fire extinguishing means in an optimum manner such that a fire extinguishing fluid will be directed more or less precisely and specifically onto the detected and located fire and not into other nearby regions where no such fire is present. Also, the output signal, in the exemplary but nonspecifically limiting first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. l-l3 inclusive, operates a warning alarm signal producing means so as to provide a warning alarm signal producing means so as to provide a perceptible alarm at one or more locations, either local or remote, so that the detection and location of the fire will become known to the appropriate personnel at the very beginning of such a fire, who may take such other appropriate action as may be necessary to aid in extinguishing the fire even though the fire extinguishing means of the apparatus of the present invention is intended to accomplish this fully in a completely automatic manner.

in the exemplary but nonspecifically limiting first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. ll-l3 inclusive, the apparatus generally includes three distinct major portions, the first of which is designated generally by the reference numeral 30 and which may be said to comprise a surveillance unit, the second of which is indicated generally by the reference numeral 32 and which may be said to comprise the above-mentioned fire extinguishing means, and the third of which com prises the above-mentioned warning signal producing means, such as is generally designated by the reference numeral 34.

The surveillance unit, generally designated at 30 in the exemplary first form of the invention, is adapted to maintain an actual physical scanning-type of surveillance of arelatively large spacial region between same and a relatively large floor area at the bottom of said spacial region, such as the floor of a warehouse or the like, of the type generally designated by the reference numeral 36 in FIG. 1, although it should be understood that the building 36 may be any type of building and is not limited to a Warehouse specifically. It will be noted that, in the exemplary first form of the invention illustrated, the warehouse 36 has a relatively large floor space area such as is generally designated by the reference numeral 38, which may be said to effectively be formed of or made up of a plurality of similar multiple area portions, several representative individual ones of which are individually indicated by the reference numeral 40. The multiple area portions 40 in FIG. 1 are indicated as being defined by phantom lines, and this is done in order to make it completely clear that there are no such real physical lines and that they are imaginary, and that the breaking up of the complete warehouse floor surface area 38 into a plurality of multiple area fioor portions 40 is a convenience for use in considering the surveillance and actual scanning thereof by the surveillance unit 30, which is carried at a substantially central position (although it may be located elsewhere if the scanning pattern is correspondingly modified) immediately below a ceiling 42 of the warehouse so that it can maintain surveillance of virtually the entire interior region defined within the warehouse walls between the surveillance unit 30 and the plurality of multiple area portions 60 of the complete warehouse fioor surface 38. in this connection, it should be clearly noted that a simpler way of considering of referring to the spacial regions maintained under surveillance by the surveillance unit 30 is to define them or to refer to them in terms of the lower terminal surface of said spacial regions which is largely defined by the warehouse floor 38 and the multiple area portions 40 thereof, although in those instances where it is desired to also maintain surveillance of upper portions of sidewalls of the warehouse, the projected bottom terminal area of the region under surveillance would necessarily be somewhat larger than the actual warehouse floor 38, but even where this type of complete scanning of the warehouse walls is desired, it is merely necessary to consider the relatively large area 38 as being extended beyond the actual warehouse floor to an extent such as to include in the scanning region all upper sidewall portions of the warehouse which it is desired to be included therein. Any reference hereinafter .to the so-called relatively large area 38 comprised of multiple area portions 40 is to be broadly construed in the light of the foregoing statement.

The surveillance unit, generally designated by the reference numeral 44, which is adapted to be actually physically scanningly moved in a horizontal 360 rotative sweeping movement, with each succeeding 360 circular sweeping movement being progressively deflected in a vertical planar direction or manner so that the entire plurality of multiple area portions 40 will be sequentially scanned and effectively viewed by the fire sensing means 44 in a manner such as to selectively sense a fire which may occur in any of such multiple area portions 40 in a manner both detecting such a fire and also determining the location thereof with respect to such multiple area portions 40. In other words, the fire sensing means M will, by reason of its scanning movement, also acquire exact location information as to exactly which of the multiple area portions 40 contains such a fire, such as is indicated generally at 46 in the fragmentary view comprising FIG. 4.

The fire sensing means of the exemplary first form of the invention generally designated at 44, :is of an actual physical scanning-type as referred to above and, therefore, includes what might be termed a gimbal-type of double ring mounting means, such as is generally designated by the reference numeral 48, which permits the above-described type of actual physical scanning movement along two mutually perpendicular planes (i.e., a substantially horizontal plane as far as movement is concerned, although downwardly angularly directed, and a plane substantially perpendicular thereto) of the scanning receiver means, generally designated by the reference numeral 50, which comprises a directional input means 52 (which may be a parabolically shaped infrared receiver and reflector means in one exemplary form of the invention) and which further includes a fire responsive transducer element 54 of a complete fire responsive effective output signal transducer means, generally designated by the reference numeral 56, which is adapted to have the infrared radiation or heat received by the relatively angularly narrow directional input means 52 effectively focused thereupon to effectively alter the condition of an associated circuit, such as is indicated at 58, in a manner which will cause the remaining or output signal producing portion 60 of the complete fire responsive effective output signal producing transducer means 56 to provide an intelligence-carrying output signal (in one or more such output signal portions) in response to the detection and location of a fire by the complete fire sensing means 44, with the fire sensing means 44 also providing intelligence indicating, in addition to the detection and presence of such a fire, the actual physical location thereof with respect to the previously mentioned multiple floor area portions ll). The detailed structure of the complete fire responsive effective output signal producing transducer means 56 will be described hereinafter.

The fire sensing means, generally designated by the reference numeral M, also is provided with scanning motor means 62, which drives a first reduction gearing means 64, the output of which in turn drives a hollow shaft 66 which is connected to the outermost ring member 68 of the gimbal-type double ring mounting means designated generally at Ml, and rotates said outermost ring member 68 around a vertical axis. Said outer ring member 68 is provided with appropriate bearings 70 and 72, in the first case both rotatively and vertically mounting and positioning the hollow shaft 66, and in the ill second case rotatably and vertically mounting and positioning a second hollow shaft 74 at the opposite end of the outer ring member 68. Either or both of said bearing members 70 and 72 may be connected to suitable mounting structure such as is indicated generally at 76 for attachment of the entire surveillance unit 30 to the ceiling 42. The other or inner ring member 78, in one preferred form of the invention, actually only comprises a partial ring and is pivotally mounted with respect to the first ring member 68 for rotation around a substantially horizontal axis perpendicular to the vertical axis of rotation of the first ring member 68.

In the example illustrated, this is provided by having aligned opposite side portions of the inner ring member 78 provided with outwardly directed stud members 80 which extend through rotary sleeve members 82 carried by corresponding adjacent portions of the outer ring member 68, although the rotative mounting arrangement can be positionally reversed or otherwise modified provided that the proper mounting of the inner ring member 78 with respect to the outer ring member 6% for rotation around a horizontal axis of rotation is achieved, and all such arrangements are intended to be included and comprehended within the broad scope of the present invention.

it will be understood that an appropriate portion of the inner ring member 78 mounts (preferably adjustably) the previously mentioned scanning receiver means 50, and means is provided for causing the inner ring member 78 to move through a predetermined vertical planar arcuate extent so as to correspondingly move the directional input means 52 of the scanning receiver 50 in a manner much less than, but correlated with respect to, the corresponding horizontal rotary movement provided thereto by the corresponding rotary movement of the outer ring member 68 during scanning operation of the complete gimbal-type double ring mounting structure 48 of the fire sensing means generally designated at M.

in the example illustrated in the first form of the invention, said means for correlating a vertical planar arcuate movement of the direction input means 52 of the scanning receiver 50 with the horizontal arcuate movement thereof in an appropriate scanning mannercomprises a return biasing spring 83 and a positionally adjustable threaded stop member 84, arranged for use in vertically arcuately returning the entire inner ring member 78 and the directional input means 52 of the scanning receiver 50 to an initial starting position after completion of one complete scanning cycle. Said means also includes the positive vertical movement driving means generally designated by the reference numeral 86, which includes a nonrotating, vertically directed stub shaft 88 fixedly carried by the surveillance unit 30 at a location below the bearing 72 and the hollow shaft 74 and extending upwardly therethrough into a position within the outer ring member 63 and exactly coaxial with the vertical axis of rotation thereof and terminating with a small bevel gear 90 which drives a much larger right angle bevel gear 92 which is coupled to a second reduction gearing means 94 which in turn drives a partial spur gear 96 which drives a sector-shaped gear 98 directly coupled to an offset portion of the inner ring member 73. It should be clearly noted that the partial driving spur gear 96 has peripheral gear teeth 100 around only a portion of the circumference thereof and has a radially inwardly recessed, nontoothed return slide portion 102.

The arrangement of the structure described immediately above for causing appropriate horizontal planar and vertical planar correlated but lesser magnitude scanning movement of the directional downwardly angularly inclined input means 52 of the scanning receiver 50 is such that energization of the motor means 62, which is the normal condition thereof when the surveillance unit 30 is energized and which only becomes inoperative when a tire is detected and located as will be described in greater detail hereinafter, drives the first reduction gearing 64, which in turn drives the first-mentioned hollow shaft 66 which is directly connected to the upper end of the first-mentioned ring member 68 which, therefore, is rotated around a vertical axis of rotation at a constant horizontal scanning rate determined by the initial r.p.m. of the motor 62 and the extent of the output-to-input reduction provided by the reduction gearing means 64 which, in certain forms of the invention, may be of a controllably adjustabletype if desired.

The rotation of the outer ring member 68 provided in the immediately previously described manner, causes the entire offset assembly carried by the inner ring member 78 and comprising driven large bevel gear 92, the second reduction gearing 94, and the partial spur gear 96, to rotate around the vertical axis of rotation of the outer ring member 68 and, more importantly, to rotate around the'fixed small bevel gear which is in engagement with the edge of the large bevel gear 92, thus causing the large bevel gear 92 to be rotated at a reduced rate compared to the rate of rotation of the outer ring member 68. This reduced rate of rotation of the bevel gear 92 is further reduced by the second reduction gearing 94 so that the partial spur gear @6 is driven in a manner synchronized an correlated with the rotation of the outer ring member 68 around its vertical axis of rotation but at a very much lesser rate of rotation.

The greatly reduced rate of rotation of the partial spur gear 96 causes greatly reduced corresponding rotary movement of the sector gear 98 fixedly carried by the offset portion of the inner ring member 78 and thus causes the inner ring member 78 to be angularly rotated in a vertical plane through an arcuate extent vertical planar deflection correlated with but very much less than the corresponding rate of horizontal arcuate rotary movement of the outer ring member 68, and since the scanning receiver 50 moves in precisely the same manner as the offset portion of the inner ring member 73 carrying the partial gear 98, it is correspondingly arcuately moved in a vertical plane in a manner correlated with its horizontal arcuate movement, although of much lesser magnitude, in precisely the desired scanning manner.

As soon as the directional input means 52 of the scanning receiver 50 has moved to the extreme desired extent of its vertical planar arcuate deflection, such as would occur immediately following the position of the apparatus as shown in FIG. 6, the peripheral toothed portion 100 of the partial gear 96 becomes disengaged from the teeth of the sector gear 93 and the recessed, nontoothed return of the slide portion 102 of the partial gear 96 moves into opposition to the toothed sector gear 98 and allows the return biasing spring 83 to reverse the direction of vertical planar arcuate movement of the inner ring member 78 and of the scanning receiver 50 back to its initial starting position for the repetition of the scanning cycle as soon as the partial gear 96 has rotated sufficiently to again oppose the partial peripheral gear toothed portion 100 thereof to the sector gear 98 and again drivingly engage same for repeating the vertical planar arcuate deflection cycle of operations described above. This return of the apparatus to its initial starting position is best shown in FIG. 7, and in connection therewith it should be noted that the extent of the return movement provided by the return biasing spring 33' can be adjustably controlled by the adjustable stop means 84, and also the extent of the opposite extreme of the vertical planar arcuate deflection of the inner ring member 78 and of the scanning receiver 50 can be adjusted by removing individual portions of the partial exterior peripheral gear teeth 100 which are separate from the inner body thereof and are fastened thereon by threaded fastener means 104 in a plurality of individual, arcuately adjacent, arcuate gear tooth elements.

The exemplary first form of the invention also includes the previously mentioned fire extinguishing means generically designated by the reference numeral 32 and having a directional nozzle means or the like, such as indicated at 1106, adapted to controllably emit a fire extinguishing fluid (usually water, although not specifically so limited) toward any particular one of the multiple area portions 40 (which is to be construed as including intervening space volume portions also) in which a fire has developed and has been detected and located by the surveillance unit 30. In other words, the nozzle means 106 of the fire extinguishing means 32 is adapted to be directed toward exactly the same multiple area portion 40 as that toward which the directional input means 52 of the scanning means 50 is directed when a fire is detected and located thereby. At all other times, the nozzle 106 remains motionless and does not move through a continuous sequence of scanning movements as does the directional input means 52 of the scanning receiver 50 of the surveillance unit 30.

The movement of the nozzle 106 so as to be directed toward the same multiple area portion 40 as the directional input means 52 of the scanning receiver 50 only occurs when the complete fire responsive effective output signal producing transducer means 5.6 produces an output signal indicating the detection and location of such a fire as will be explained hereinafter. This is accomplished through the use of correlation and control means, generally designated by the reference numeral 108, which includes servomotor means for operating a correlated portion of the fire extinguishing means 32 in a selective correlated manner whereby to cause activation thereof, by the opening of a normally closed solenoid openable control valve means such as is indicated generally by the reference numeral 1 and which is actually a part of said correlation and control means 108. The opening of the normally closed solenoid openable control valve means 110 is preferably slightly delayed by time delay means indicated in block diagrammatic form at 111 allow the repositioning of the nozzle 106 to be completed before the valve 110 opens, which, of course, causes the emission of a fire extinguishing fluid, such as water or the like, and does so through the nozzle 106 which is directed at that particular one of the multiple area portions 10 which contains a fire which has been detected and located by the surveillance unit 30.

The correlation and control means, generally designated by the reference numeral 108, also comprises a rotatable horizontal master positioning synchrorotary motor means, indicated generally at 112, which also has its rotor 116 driven by the output of the reduction gearing 645, which is driven by the driving motor 62, and thus it will be understood that the rotor 1 16 of the master positioning synchrorotary motor means 112 moves in exact correspondence with the rotation of the previously mentioned outer ring member 68 of the scanning means, and thus may be referred to as a horizontal master positioning synchrorotary motor means.

it should be noted that there are two input leads 114 to the rotor 116 of the horizontal master positioning synchro 112 and that there are three symmetrically arranged field windings 118 disposed about the rotor 116 and each having a pair of leads, one of which is connected to the next field winding 118 and the other of which extends to a position exterior of the synchro 112 as indicated at 120. Thus, exterior of the synchro 112 there are two rotor leads 11d and three field leads 120, and these are adapted to be correspondingly connected to the similar rotor winding 116 and to the similar field windings 118' of the corresponding and correlated horizontal slave positioning synchrorotor means, generally designated by the reference numeral 112', which has an output shaft 122 effectively connected to a horizontally rotary pipe portion, indicated generally at 12-1, of the fire extinguishing means 32 which is adapted to rotate around a vertical axis of rotation in a manner similar to the ring member 68 of the surveillance unit 30. in the example illustrated, this is accomplished by mounting the slave synchro 112' so that the output shaft 122 thereof drives spur gears 126 through reduction gearing 128 in a manner such that the extent of rotative movement imparted by the spur gears 126 to a similar laterally adjacent spur gear 130 coupled to the rotary tube portion 132 of the horizontally rotatable structure 12% produces exactly corresponding rotation thereof when energized to that of the rotor 116 of the horizontal master synchro 112 and the corresponding rotation of the first ring member 68 of the surveillance unit 30.

The three field winding output leads 120 from the master synchro 112 connect to the corresponding field windings 118 of the slave synchro 112'. However, the two leads 1114 connected to the master synchrorotor 116 are not normally connected to the slave synchrorotor means 116 until such time as a previously open relay switch 166 of a composite relay indicated generally at 1341 is closed as a consequence of the scanning receiver 50 of the surveillance unit 30 detecting and locating a fire in a particular one of said multiple area portions 10 and causing the production by the complete fire responsive effective output signal producing transducer means 56 of an output signal in a manner which will be described hereinafter. Whenever this occurs and the previously open relay switch 166 is temporarily closed for the duration of the detected and located fire, and leads 114 are connected from the AC input terminals 136 to both the master synchro rotor 116 and the slave synchrorotor 116, and this in the manner of such synchro positioning motors, causes the rotor 116' of the slave synchro 112' to rotate until it assumes exactly the same angular rotative position as that of the rotor 116 of the master synchro unit 112, which of course corresponds to the position of the outer ring member 68 and the scanning receiver 50 of the surveillance unit 30.

Of course, the rotation of the slave rotor 116 of the slave synchro 112' will thus cause the rotation of the complete horizontal rotary assembly 124 of the fire extinguishing means 32 until the nozzle 106 is directed exactly toward that particular one of the multiple area portions 40 which contains the fire which has been detected and located by the directional input means 52 of the scanning receiver 50 of the surveillance unit 30. At precisely this same time, energization of the relay 134 closes another relay switch 162, which causes electrical energy from the AC input terminals 136 to also be connected to the previously mentioned solenoid operated control valve to open same.

It should be noted that, in the exemplary arrangement illustrated, the previously mentioned horizontally rotary pipe structure 124 of the fire sensing means 32 actually comprises the upper rotary inlet pipe or tube portion 132 and a bifurcated or yoke-shaped pipe portion 138 terminating at the bottom in two inwardly directed, aligned pipe ends 139 which carry rotary liquidtight couplings, such as indicated generally at 140, rotatively connected to a corresponding inner pipe member 142 which, in turn, is connected to the previously mentioned nozzle 106.

The upper inlet tube or pipe portion 132 is connected through another liquidtight rotary bearing means 144 to an upper, nonrotatable pipe portion 146 which is adapted to be fastened to the ceiling d2 of the warehouse 36 and to pass therethrough and to be connected to a suitable source of fire extinguishing fluid under pressure, such as to a water main or the like, although not specifically so limited.

It should be clearly noted that the two liquidtight rotary couplings generally indicated at and the single liquidtight coupling, generally indicated at 144, may each be of a similar type adapted to allow free axial rotation of the aligned parts while maintaining a complete liquidtight communication of the corresponding pipe portions, and since such structures are well known in the art and do not touch. upon the real inventive concept of the present invention, the detailed interior construction thereof is not shown. Incidentally, the solenoid openable control valve 110 which has been previously referred to as effectively controlling fluid emission from the nozzle 106 is not physically carried by the nozzle 106 in the exemplary form of the invention illustrated but is effectively in control thereof. Actually, it is carried in the fixed pipe portion 146, which is a more convenient location therefor since it will not then move, with the consequent electrical connection problems which would arise from such movement.

The previously mentioned correlation and control means indicated generally at 108 also includes, in addition to the horizontal master and slave synchros 112 and 112' carried, respectively, by the surveillance unit 30 and the fire extinguishing means 32, vertical planar master and slave synchromotor means of identical construction to the horizontal movement master and slave synchromotor means 112 and IE2, and therefore'a detailed description of such vertical planar movement master and slave synchro means will not again be repeated.

In order to correlate the previous description of the horizontal master and slave synchromotors 112 and 112' with the corresponding identical parts of the vertical planar movement master and slave synchros, similar parts of the latter are designated by the same reference numerals, followed by the letter V, however --meaning that parts bearing the same reference numerals as those of the horizontal movement master and slave synchros 1 112 and 112' are identical in structure thereto but comprise corresponding parts of the vertical planar movement master and slave synchros 1 12V and 1 12V. This is true of all of the corresponding parts.

In the case of the vertical planar movement master synchro 112V, it should be noted that its rotor 116V is effectively coupled to the inner ring member 78 at an axial location, while the remainder of the vertical planar movement master synchro 112V is coupled to the outer ring member 68, and thus relative vertical pivotal movement of the inner ring member 78 with respect to the outer ring member 68 will cause corresponding relative rotation of the master synchrorotor 116V with respect to the remainder of said master synchro 112V, and of the slave synchrorotor 116V with respect to the remainder of the slave synchro llZV, by reason of the electrical connection thereof as a consequence of the energization of the previously mentioned relay 134 and the closure thereby of another relay switch 166 to electrically connect the master and the slave rotor leads 114V between the master synchrorotor 116V and the slave synchrorotor 116V; it being understood that the three field windings 118V and 118V, respectively, are already connected through the three sets of leads 120V passing through three of the corresponding sliprings M8 separately and insulatingly carried by the hollow drive shaft 66 and through corresponding brush means 150 and through corresponding brush means 150 engaging corresponding sliprings 148 exteriorly carried in an insulated manner by the rotatable tube means 132 of the fire extinguishing means 32 and connected therefrom to the corresponding three field windings 118V.

The connection of the master and slave synchrorotors II6V and 116V by the rotor leads 114V occurs, as mentioned above, when the previously mentioned relay switch 164 is closed and this occurs through the other two'sliprings I52 spacedly and insulatingly carried by the hollow shaft 66 and cooperating with corresponding contact brushes 154 and through the corresponding pair of brushes 154 engaging the corresponding pair of sliprings 152' exteriorly carried in an insulated manner by the rotatable tube means 132 of the fire extinguishing means 32 and connected therefrom to the corresponding two rotor windings iI6V'. This of course causes the rotor 1 MV of the slave synchro 1 12, to be effectively attached in driving relationship to the entire inner tube portion 142 of the fire extinguishing means 32 around-a horizontal axis of rotation thereof because of the fact that an exterior part of one of the rotary couplings 140 physically carries the slave synchrorotor 116V around the exterior thereof while the remaining and field carrying portion of the vertical planar movement synchro 11 12V is attached to the adjacent inwardly directed pipe end portion 139 of the bifurcated yoke part 138 of the horizontally rotary pipe structure 124.

Thus, whatever position the directional input means 52 of the scanning receiver 50 is in when it detects a fire will automatically be transmitted as a result of closure of the corresponding relay switches 166 and I64 (comprising parts of relay 134 operated by energization of relay coil 158) to the two slave synchros 112' and 112V of the fire extinguishing means 32, and will cause them to immediately rotate until the nozzle 106 is directed exactly toward the fire which has been detected and located by the surveillance unit 30 and at that time, also in response to energization of relay coil I58 to operate composite relay 134, the normally closed solenoid openable control valve 1 10 of the fire extinguishing means 32 is temporarily opened for the duration of the fire and a fire extinguishing fluid, such as water or the like is emitted directly onto the fire until it is extinguished, at which time the directional input means 52 of the scanning receiver 50 no longer detects the previous fire and therefore no intelligencecarrying output signal is produced by the complete fire responsive effective output signal producing transducer means 56 of the complete fire sensing means 44 and the relay 134 becomes effectively deenergized and the solenoid operable control valve of the fire extinguishing means 32 closes and the driving motor 62, which had been deenergized only during the duration of the fire in a manner which will be described immediately hereinafter, is again reenergized and the actual physical scanning movement of the fire sensing means 44 of the surveillance unit 30 beings again.

As pointed out above, when a fire is detected and located by the fire sensing means 44 and the previously described sequence of operations begins, the energization of the previously mentioned relay I34 under the control of the transducer means 56 deenergizes the motor 62 during the duration of the fire for precisely the same period of time as the temporary opening of the solenoid openable control valve 1 10 of the fire extinguishing means 32 occurs. In other words, whenever the motor 62 is on, the fire extinguishing means 32 is inoperative, and whenever the fire extinguishing means 32 is operative the motor 62 is deenergized.

The previously mentioned composite relay 134, which is under the control of the output signal producing portion 60 of the fire responsive effective output signal producing transducer means 56, actually comprises, in the example illustrated, a single energizing relay coil 158 operating a plurality of sets of relay contacts including normally closed relay contacts 160 connecting the AC terminals 136 to the motor 62, normally open relay contacts 162 connecting the AC terminals 136 to the solenoid-openable control valve 110, normally open relay contacts I64 connecting the AC terminals 136 to the vertical planar master synchro 116V and also to the slave synchrorotor 116V, and another, normally open set of contacts 166 connecting the horizontal master synchrorotor 116 to the horizontal slave synchrorotor 116'.

Said fire responsive efiective output signal producing transducer means 56 in the exemplary first form of the invention includes the previously mentioned transducer element 54 carried at the effective focus of the directional input means 52 of the scanning receiver means 50 which is connected by means of two wires and two additional sliprings 168 carried by the hollow shaft 66 and engaged by two corresponding exterior brushes 1170 through the extended leads 172 to the corresponding two leads 174 of the remaining output signal producing portion, indicated generally at 60, of the complete fire responsive effective output signal producing transducer means 56 which is also a part thereof.

The transducer means indicated generally at 56 is based primarily upon the transducer element 54 which may comprise a photocell or a light responsive resistor normally having a very high resistance, perhaps of the order of 1 to 3 megohms or the like, although not specifically so limited, and which, when subjected to infrared radiation, has its resistance very greatly reduced. In the example illustrated, the directional input means 52 is provided with an infrared filter means 176 adapted to substantially completely exclude all visible light and to pass only infrared radiation. Thus, obviously, the light responsive transducer element 54 will respond only to infrared radiation received thereby and in response to the receipt of such infrared radiation in excess of a predetermined magnitude it will very quickly change the magnitude of impedance or resistance of the associated circuitry connected thereto and including the variable resistor or rheostat 178, which is a sensitivity control, and the two resistors 180 and I82.

The AC input voltage from the AC input terminals 136 is effectively fed into a half-wave voltage doubler power supply 183, which includes the diodes 11M and I86 and the two capacitors 188 and 189, and which functions to halfway rectify and double the approximately 1 17 volts conventionally supplied at the AC input terminals 136 so that the voltage fed to the sensitivity control rheostat 178, taking into account the small losses which occur, is approximately 325 volts DC.

The voltage across the infrared responsive resistor 54 is determined by the setting of the sensitivity variable resistor or rheostat 178 and since the resistance of the infrared responsive resistor 50 is extremely high when little or no infrared radiation is received thereby there is little current flow through the series circuit connecting same and the sensitivity controlling rheostat 178 and the two resistors 180 and 182 connected in a controlling manner with respect to the gate of the silicon controlled rectifier gate 190, and thus said silicon controlled rectifier is normally nonconductive.

However, as the resistance of the infrared responsiveresistor 54- decreases because of the increased reception of infrared radiation because the scanning means 50 has detected and located a fire, more current flows through the associated circuit including the sensitivity controlling rheostat 178 and the resistor 180 (which is a current limiter used to protect the silicon controlled rectifier gate from damage) and the other resistor 182 (which is a gate controlling resistor). Increased current flow through the gate controlling resistor 182 sets up a positive voltage on the gate of the silicon controlled rectifier 190 and triggers it into conduction.

Pulsating DC voltage is then applied through the output lead 192 to the transmitter, indicated generally by the reference numeral 194, for the production of an alarm trans mission signal which can be fed through the conventional AC power line to one or more warning alarm signal producing means, either local or remote or both, such as the exemplary one generally designated by the reference numeral 36, for causing same to be operated coincident with the detection and location of a fire by the surveillance unit 30. The details of the transmitter 19 1 of the warning alarm signal producing means M will be described hereinafter.

At the same time that the circuit associated with the infrared radiation responsive resistor 54 has its resistance greatly lowered because of the detection and location of the fire, the increased current in said circuit passes through the previously mentioned relay coil 158 of composite relay 134 and causes operation of all of the plurality of sets of relay contacts 160, 162, 164, and 166 previously described herein for the purposes also previously described herein, which of course bring about the cessation of operation of the main driving motor 62, thus the locking of the directional input portion 52 of the scanning receiver 50 on the detected and located fire, the activation of the two slave synchros 112' and 112V of the fire extinguishing means 32 so as to cause it to move until the nozzle 106 is also directed toward the fire which has been detected and located by the surveillance unit 30, and the activation of the normally closed, solenoid openable control valve 1 of the fire extinguishing means 32 so that a fire extinguishing fluid such as water or the like will be directed onto the detected and located fire, which state of conditions will continue until the fire has been extinguished, at which time the infrared radiation impinging upon the infrared radiation responsive resistor 54- becomes greatly reduced or eliminated substantially entirely and the resistance thereof greatly increases, resulting in greatly decreased current flow through the corresponding circuitry and through the relay coil 158 which is thus effectively deenergized in a manner which allows it to respond to its normal spring biasing so as to be operated in a manner which will change the relative positions of all of the various sets of relay contacts 160, 162, 164, and 166 of relay 134. This will, of course, deenergize the valve 110 and shut off the fire extinguishing fluid or water emitted by the fire extinguishing means 32, disconnect the slave synchrorotors 116 and 116V of the fire extinguishing means 32 from AC power and the corresponding rotors 116 and 116' of the master synchros 112 and 112V of the surveillance unit 30, and will also reenergize the main driving scanning motor 62 and again initiate scanning operation of the surveillance unit 30 until another fire is detected and located or until the complete device is deenergized by disconnecting it from the AC power source 136, either by pulling the plug out of the electrical receptacle or female outlet or by pulling the switch, or otherwise.

The transmitter 194 normally receives no input signal by way of the lead 192 but, as previously described, whenever the infrared radiation responsive resistor 54 receives a substantial amount of infrared radiation as a result of the detection and location of a tire, the silicon control rectifier produces a pulsating DC voltage applied through the lead 192 across the transmitter 194 which functions to generate an output alarm transmission signal adapted to be transmitted over the conventional wall-mounted AC power lines to any other wall outlet or the like where the alarm unit 34 is connected to any other wall outlet or the like where the alarm unit 34 is connected to the AC power lines and where the alarm transmission signal will be received, detected, and/or demodulated, and caused to operate a perceptible alarm signal means which will produce an audible alarm, a visible alarm, or any combination thereof at one or more locations.

The above-mentioned application ofa pulsating DC voltage through the lead 192 across the transmitter 194, which effectively comprises a multivibrator of an emitter-coupled type, causes the transistors 196 and 198 to generate a carrier wave or signal which may be of any suitable frequency such as 50 ltilocycles, for example, and which may be very precisely attained through the use of a trimmer capacitor 200 which allows minute frequency adjustments of the output of the multivibrator.

The transmitter output is coupled by way of a capacitor 202 and resistor 204 to the base of a switching transmitter 206. The diode 208 protects the base of the switching transistor 206 by limiting negative voltage peaks. When the transmitter 194 is turned on, the switching transistor 206 switches off and on at a rate, in the example described, of 50 kilocycles. One end of an output circuit comprising a parallel-connected capacitor 210 and a resistor 212 is connected to one side of the AC line connected to one of the AC input terminals 136 and the other end of said output circuit 210212 is connected to the collector of the switching transistor 206. When said switching transmitter 206 switches, its collector-toemitter resistance is very low, in effect placing the capacitor 210 and parallel-connected resistor 212 across the AC power line, through the silicon controlled rectifier 190 which is, of course, also conducting at that time.

The transmitting multivibrator portion of the complete transmitter 194 is connected to one side of the AC line through another resistor 214. The emitters of the transistors 196 and 198 are connected to the anode of the silicon controlled rectifier 190.

When the silicon controlled rectifier 190 conducts, it turns on the multivibrator by supplying it with 60-cycle pulsating DC voltage rectified from the AC power source terminals 136 which is, of course, the same as the AC line from which said AC power source terminals 136 are supplied, usually by way of a male and female plug wall or ceiling connection.

The switching transistor 206 connects the output capacitor 210 and the output resistor 212 in parallel across the AC line on alternating half cycles of the 60cycle modulating voltage, thus producing a SO-kilocycle radiofrequency carrier wave signal modulated by these half cycles at a 60cycle rate. The resultant wave form of the output transmission signal so produced is a SO-kilocycle modulation of alternating half cycles of the 60-cycle voltage on the AC line -in other words, a burst of SO-kilocycle signal transmitted 60 times per second. Since the SO-kilocycle signal is not transmitted continuously but only on alternate half cycles of the (SO-cycle AC line voltage, the output transmission signal consists of a SO-kilocycle signal pulse modulated by 60 cycles from the AC line, and this can be transmitted over the conventional wall or ceiling mounted AC power lines without in any way interfering with the operation thereof or of any other equipment plugged into the AC power line except one or more warning alarm signal producing means of the general-type indicated at 34, each of which. may be said to comprise input coupling capacitors 216 and 218 connected to a SO-kilocycle input filter transformer, indicated generally at 220, thus providing appropriate input to the complete receiver unit, generally designated by the reference numeral 222 and doing so through the conventional AC power line. The resistor 224 helps to match the filter transformer 220 to the power line.

The alarm transmission signal, after having been received by the AC input terminals of the receiver 222 and having passed through the input filter transformer 220, has most of the 60-cycle AC component removed by the time the 50-kilocycle burst signal arises at the base of the transistor 226. This transistor amplifies the signal which is then fed to SO-kilocycle output filter transformer 228. in the secondary circuit of said output filter transformer 228, diode 230 detects the negative half of the signal and a capacitor 232 filters out the SO-kilocycle carrier, leaving only 60-cycle modulated pulse wave form. Frequencies above approximately 60-cycles cycles are removed by an integrator including the resistor 21% and the capacitor 236 and the resulting 60-cycle signal is fed to the base of a transistor 238.

When no signal is present at the transistor 238, it is held at saturation by a base-bias voltage divider including the resistors 240 and 242. When a signal is received, however, it lowers the conducting point of transistor 238 and increases its collector voltage, causing the transistor to conduct and pass the pulse. Following this amplifier, the signal is fed to an integrator comprising the resistor 244 and the capacitor 246, whose time constant is very low. Hence, several 60-cycle pulses are required to charge the capacitor 246. Resistor 248 discharges any noise or static signals which tend to charge the capacitor 246, and diode 250 limits any negative voltage which might discharge the capacitor 246.

When capacitor 246 is fully charged, diode 252 conducts, turning on the silicon controlled rectifier 254 which then conducts and effectively shorts the positive end of the relay, indicated generally at 256 to ground through the switch 258 and the anode-cathode circuit of the silicon controlled rectifier 254.

Normally the alarm unit itself which actually produces the perceptible output alarm is plugged into the AC line and there may be one or more such alarm units operated from the receiver, either locally or remotely. The power supply means generally designated by the reference numeral 260 and including the transformer 262, the diode 264, and the capacitor 266, furnishes a normal 16 volts DC for the transistors and energizes the relay 256, thus making the normally open contacts thereof. Hence, the alarm circuit including the battery, indicated generally at 268 and the diode 270, is open and the alarm does not sound.

When the silicon controlled rectifier 254 conducts, however, as a result of receiving the previously mentioned type of alarm transmission signal originally produced by the transmitter 194 as a result of the detection and location of a fire, the silicon controlled rectifier 254 shorts out the positive end of the coil of the relay 256 to ground, deenergizing the relay and causing the normally closed contacts to make or move to the alternate positions thereof. With the alarm circuit closed, the alarm transducer (which may be of any well-known type such as a bell, a siren, or any other suitable type, which is indicated diagrammatically by the reference numeral 272), produces a very high amplitude output audible signal which can be heard at great distances. However, the actual alarm 272 may be one or more lights of either a steady state or intermittently flashing-type, or any combination thereof, with an audible alarm, and there may be any desired number of either or both types of alarms located at one or more locations, either local or remote.

After an alarm signal has been received and the appropriate corrective action has occurred (in other words, the originally detected and located fire has been extinguished, either by the fire extinguishing means 32 or by auxiliary fire extinguishing operations or both), the receiver 222 is restored to its standby condition by pushing the composite reset switch 274 which operates both the previously mentioned switch 258 in a manner such as to open the circuit from the silicon controlled rectifier 254 to the coil of the relay 256 and also operates the other switch portion 276 in a manner closing same so as to discharge the capacitor 246, which prevents the diode 252 and the silicon controlled rectifier 254 from conducting until another transmission signal is received by the receiver 222.

Power for the alarm transducer 272 is furnished by the battery 268, which is trickle-charged from the AC power line through the resistor 278 and the diode 280. If power to the receiver fails, voltage to the coil of the relay 256 is cut off, causing the normally closed relay contacts to make. The alarm would then sound to indicate the power loss. Any number of external alarms may be used with the receiver 222 and may be connected to auxiliary socket means which supplies the 117 volts AC and may be switched by another set of contacts on the relay 256 if desired.

It should be noted that the heat responsive transducer element 54 has been referred to hereinbefore as comprising a photocell or a light responsive resistor normally having a very high resistance, perhaps of the order of l to 3 megohms or the like, although not specifically so limited, and which, when subjected to infrared radiation, has its resistance very greatly reduced.

It has also been referred to hereinbefore as being provided with an infrared filter means 176 adapted to substantially exclude or greatly attenuate all visible light and to pass substantially only infrared radiation. This should be construed broadly since actually the photocell or infrared radiation responsive resistor 54 may be of a type responsive to a broad spectrum of radiation in the infrared and visible light regions which thus requires the infrared filter means 176 to exclude other forms of radiation which might cause the operation of the apparatus in an undesired manner simulating the detection and location of a fire when actually only conventional visible light is received by the directional input means 52. However, alternatively, the photocell or infrared radiation responsive resistor 54 may be of a type which inherently, by reason of the characteristics of the photocell or infrared radiation responsive resistor 54 itself, is responsive to infrared radiation and has little or no response to visible light. Either type of arrangement or any other substantially functionally equivalent arrangement may be employed in lieu of the specific exemplary but nonlimiting arrangement illustrated in the first form of the invention, and all such equivalent arrangements are intended to be included and comprehended within the broad scope of the present invention.

FlG. i4 is a fragmentary view similar to a very small portion of FIG. 3 or of FIG. 13, but illustrates a very slight modification of the type of heat responsive means shown at 54 in F I03. 3 and 13, which is adapted to be connected to the circuitry of the first form of the invention as shown very fragmentarily in FIG. 13 and as shown somewhat more completely in FIG. 3. Because this view does illustrate a modification, parts which are similar to those of the first form of the invention are designated by similar reference numerals, followed by the letter a, however.

In the FIG. 14 modification, it should be noted that the actual transducer element 540 comprises a type of heat responsive means which is not responsive only to infrared radiation but which is responsive to the reception of any form of heat in any of several different ways such as by way of infrared radiation, convection, conduction, or any combination thereof, and wherein the actual heat responsive element 54a comprises an effective normally open switch means which optionally may be shunted by a very high resistance as indicated at 282, with said normally open switch element effectively comprising a thermostatic switch element, also indicated by said reference numeral 54a, made up of at least two joined, dissimilar metals having very substantially different temperature coefficients of expansion and having one end fixed and the other end freely movable in the direction of the arrow indicated by the reference numeral 284 in response to the reception of heat of a predetermined extent which will eifectively close the contacts 286 of the heat responsive switch 54a and maintain it closed as long as said heat is received by the thermostat switch element Ma. This will, of course, close the same analogous circuit through the sensitivity control 1780 as that previously described at 1178 in the first form of the invention and will cause similar operation of the remainder of the apparatus of the first form of the invention, which is adapted to be connected to the thermostatic switch 540 in precisely the same manner as its connection to the infrared radiation responsive photocell or resistor 54 of the first form of the invention, whereby to cause all of the same sequence of events to follow production of the output signal as that described hereinbefore in connection with the first form of the invention when the infrared radiation responsive photocell or resistor 54 received sufiicient infrared radiation to cause a substantial lowering of the resistance thereof, and it is believed unnecessary to again detail all of the sequence of consequent actions of the overall apparatus.

It should be noted that the thermostatic switch element 54a may assume a variety of different physical configurations such as of longitudinal dual strip form having two strips of different metals having different thermal coefficients of expansion joined together; it may comprise a bimetallic disc-shaped structure of a type well-known in the art or any of a number of other possible physical configurations wherein the differential thermal expansion produces actual physical switch-closing movement of switch contacts. Also, a separate thermally responsive actuator operating a nonthermally responsive switch may be employed in lieu of the arrangement illustrated and may comprise, in this case, merely a single thermally expansive material coupled in actuating relationship with respect to the switch arm and adapted to change its physical dimensions sufficiently in response to the reception of a predetermined amount of heat to move the switch arm into contact-closing relationship. All such functionally equivalent arrangements are intended to be included and comprehended herein.

FIG. is another fragmentary, diagrammatic, electrical schematic view of a modified form of the fire sensing means of the first form of the invention as is perhaps best shown in FIG. 3 fragmentarily in FIG. 13, with the remainder of the apparatus removed for reasons of drawing simplification and clarity. Because this is a modification, parts which are similar to those of the first form of the invention are designated by similar reference numerals, followed by the letter b, however.

In the FIG. 15 form of the invention, a heat responsive thermostatic type element is designated by the reference numeral 5 and is normally physically positioned such as to maintain the contacts 286!) in circuit closing relationship and is only adapted to open same in response to the reception of heat in excess of a predetermined amount. In this modification, supply voltage for the normally closed thermostatic switch 54b is furnished by a step down input transformer, generally designated by the reference numeral 288, which, for example, may cause its secondary to provide approximately 6.3 volts which is rectified by rectifier means 290 and filtered by capacitor means 291.

The normally closed thermostatic switch element 54b may be in series with one or more other heat sensors, either of a similar type or of a functionally equivalent type so as to provide a plurality of spaced heat sensors if desired, functionally equivalent to the thermostatic element 54b shown in FIG. 15, and all in series with the coil of a relay, indicated generally by the reference numeral 292, which is normally energized by current flow through the circuit when no fire has been located and detected by the apparatus.

The thermostatic element 54b, or any other such remote series-connected heat sensing means of a functionally equivalent type as referred to above, may be of the fixed temperature type adapted to detect and open the associated circuit in response to a high temperature (usually at about 133 F., although not specifically so limited). When such a high temperature is detected by the closed thermostatic switch arm Mb, comprising the heat responsive means in the FIG. 15 modification of the invention, or by any other functionally equivalent heat responsive means, either remote or local, connected in series therewith, current to the relay coil 292 is interrupted. The normally closed lower pair of contacts 293 of FIG. 15 (which have been held open by the flow of current through the relay coil 292 until the reception of such a high temperature by the thermostatic switch arm 54b and the opening thereof in response thereto) then close, applyingsufficient voltage across the gate protecting resistor 180k and the gate controlling resistor 182b to gate the silicon controlled rectifier lb into conducting relationship which, in turn, will turnon a transmitter, such as that shown at 1194 in the first form of the invention, and adapted to be connected to the silicon controlled rectifier 190b in precisely the same manner as in the first form of the invention.

All portions of the half-wave rectifier voltage doubler power supply 183 of the first form of the invention are also employed in this modification as indicated at 183b, although the sensitivity control 178 of the first form of the invention is replaced in this modification by a high resistance 178b sufficient to prevent the gating of the silicon controlled rectifier 19Gb until the contacts of the relay 292 close in response to the detection and location of a fire in the manner described above. The operation of the rest of the circuitry of the FIG. 15 modification of the invention is substantially the same as that of the first form of the invention and therefore will not again be repeated.

in the FIG. 15 modification of the invention, it should be noted that the coil of the relay l58b is differently placed in the circuit so as to be energized when the normally closed contacts of the relay 292 are allowed to close from their previously held open relationship when the thermostatic switch arm 54b opens in response to the detection and location of a fire and thus deenergizes the relay coil 292. This, of course, causes the relay coil 258b and all of the associated relay switch means similar to those shown at 160, I62, I64, and 166 in the first form of the invention to operate in the same manner as previously described in connection with the first form of the invention and therefore not again described in detail in the FIG. 15 modification thereof.

FIG. 16 is another fragmentary, diagrammatic, electrical schematic view very similar to FIG. 15, but illustrating a very slight modification thereof wherein the silicon controlled rectifier l90b, the resistors 180b, 182b, and 1178b, and the complete half-wave rectifying voltage doubler power supply 1815b common to both the first form of the invention and the FIG. 15 modification, are eliminated entirely. In this modification, parts similar to those of previouslly described forms of the invention are designated by similar reference numerals, fol lowed by the letter c, however.

It will be noted that, in the FIG. 16 modification, the normally closed thermostatic switch arm or disc 54c which effectively comprises the heat responsive element of this modification of the invention, functions in substantially the same manner as the corresponding thermostatic switch element 54b of the FIG. I5 form of the invention and is connected in similar circuitry. This is also true to the relay 2920. However, it should be noted that the coil of relay 292a merely functions to operate a relay coil 158C similar to that shown at 158 in the first form of the invention and for substantially the same purposes, which are not again described at this point. Indeed, if desired, in this modification of the invention, the relay 2920 may actually merge with, and effectively replace and comprise, the relay coil 158 of the first form of the the invention, and the disclosure of FIG. 16, taken :in conjunction with this description, is intended to be construed broadly enough to cover such an arrangement.

Referenced by
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Classifications
U.S. Classification169/61, 340/538, 340/630, 169/23, 239/587.2
International ClassificationG08B17/00, A62C99/00
Cooperative ClassificationG08B17/00, A62C99/009
European ClassificationG08B17/00, A62C99/00F