HART Communication Now Available For Multi-Spectral Infrared (MSIR) Flame Detector Offering Superior False Alarm Immunity

April 27, 2007
The innovative Multi-Spectral Infrared (MSIR) FL4000 Flame Detector from General Monitors is now available with HART® communications. The FL4000, with its next-generation MSIR sensor that incorporates neural network technology (NNT), provides highly reliable flame monitoring with superior false alarm immunity, an exceptionally wide field of view (FOV) and the industry’s longest extended range. HART is a field-proven instrumentation communications protocol that is easy-to-use and provides reliable two-way digital communication without disturbing the integrity of the 4-20mA analog signal. HART communications permit remote process variable interrogation, cyclical access to process data, parameter setting and diagnostics. Unlike other technologies, HART provides a unique communication solution that is backward compatible with the installed base of instrumentation in use today. Setting a new industry standard for performance, reliability and value, the FL4000 Flame Detector gives process and plant engineers a powerful new tool in protecting people, equipment and facilities from dangerous hydrocarbon flame sources. It provides exceptional performance and reliability while minimizing operational costs associated with false alarms. Designed with an exceptionally reliable NNT flame discrimination algorithm, the FL4000 detector is highly immune to false alarms while at the same time offering extended range (up to 230 feet) and wide field-of-view (FOV) characteristics (100° at 50 feet). For example, the FL4000 MSIR flame detector provides false alarm immunity to arc welding as close as 5-15 feet. Other features include built-in COPM (Continuous Optical Path Monitoring), a self-testing feature designed to check the optical path integrity of the detector elements and the related electronic circuitry once every two minutes. Serial ports allow up to 128 units (247 using repeaters) to be linked up to a host computer using either HART or MODBUS® communications. The advanced FL4000 combines an optical MSIR sensor array with NNT processing. NNT is based on artificial neural networks (ANN), which are mathematical models of neurons in the human brain that correlate given signal patterns with target flame conditions. The optical IR sensor array and the neural network function together as an adaptive and intuitive decision-making mechanism. The resulting flame detector provides the industry’s most reliable discrimination between actual flames and costly false alarm sources. The MSIR sensor array in the FL4000 allows the detector to sample different IR spectral areas to detect a flame. Each sensor’s analog signal is sampled and then converted into digital format for initial signal pre-processing to extract time and frequency information. The time and frequency information are used by the FL4000’s proprietary neural network classification algorithm to identify if input IR signals are emitted from a flame or non-flame source. The flame or non-flame decision is then reported as an output via LEDs, relays and MODBUS. Because of its accurate and reliable flame detection scheme, the FL4000 sets a new standard for performance, reliability, safety and value. Furthermore, the FL4000’s ability to differentiate spectral radiation emitted by actual flames from that emitted by background ambient radiation is exceptional. This differentiation is extremely crucial, as failure to do so results in either undetected fires, or more commonly, nuisance false alarms. About General MonitorsFounded in 1961, General Monitors is a leading-edge manufacturer of combustible gas, toxic gas and flame detection monitoring products of the highest quality. The company has been third-party certified to ISO 9001:2000 requirements. Corporate headquarters in Lake Forest, California comprise a modern engineering design center, R&D, manufacturing, sales and service complex. A facility in Galway, Ireland supports the EU with engineering design, R&D and manufacturing. Sales and service offices are maintained in Houston, Texas, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.