Using An Ionization Smoke Detector
At your home or business, it is essential to have a smoke detector. In the case of hotels, restaurants and other types of businesses having an operational smoke detector is the law in Malaysia. The most common type of smoke detector used is the ionization smoke detector. These detectors utilize an ionization chamber as a source of ionizing radiation to detect smoke. They are very popular because they’re cost-effective and are able to detect small amounts of smoke produced by any type of flame.
There have been studies that show a large percentage of fatalities from residential fires are due to smoke inhalation. The flames associated with the fire are seldom the cause of deaths. Two-thirds of fatalities will occur at night while you are sleeping. The Ionization smoke alarms have been tested and shown to provide alarms within 90 seconds or less when smoke enters an area.
An ionization smoke alarm contains alpha
The alpha particle source will cause the air inside the device’s smoke chamber to become ionized as well as conductive.
When smoke particles go inside the device’s smoke chamber, the smoke particles combine with the ionized air molecules. The air inside the chamber experiences a decrease in conductivity. When the air conductivity inside the chamber becomes less than a predetermined level, the smoke alarm warning signal is triggered.
Most of these detectors come with a user-operated test button. It will simulate an imbalance between the chambers and the alarm will sound. This can also tell you if the detector’s battery is functional.
Ionization smoke detectors are safe even with having radioactive elements. The amount of the element americium-241 contained within the device equals less than a single milligram. In order for this to pose any type of danger to a person, they would have to directly ingest it, or inhale it.
The radiation created by the americium-241 are alpha rays. At the level found in an ionization smoke detector, they are not strong enough to go through a piece of paper. The detector’s plastic casing keeps the alpha rays safely contained.
An ionization smoke detector is able to react to invisible products that result from combustion. It is able to provide a warning about fires that are at the initial stages of development.
This type of smoke detector is also able to provide an alarm when any type of aerosol smoke are detected.
It is able to provide the earliest possible detection when compared to other brands of thermal detectors or smoke detectors.
The need for power for an ionization smoke detector is very low. A small battery can be used as the main power supply or as a backup. Without external wiring, it may be fully operational for years.