William D. Lewis    717-357-1209   workforward@hotmail.com

Portfolio Index

Click to enlarge and scroll through these pages to view the entire calculation guide.

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Full and detailed explanations and modeling of the mathematics for every part of the calculation.

Each step in the calculation guide depicted two different work documents: the section of the plans showing the portion of the suppression system being evaluated for correct fire flow, and the calculation guide to be completed that is taken from the National Fire Protection Association 13: Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems.  The calculations are broken into 

Part 2: Step-by-Step Calculation Guide

Part 1: Clearer Formula Depictions

The training audience did not have an intuitive understanding of what the formulas represented, from the mathematical expressions themselves.  The creation of info-graphic diagrams that clarified the physical properties being calculated was found to bring a significant increase in the student's understanding of the mathematical tools to be used in the calculations. These formula aids were referenced repeatedly by students during the training, and students reported regular use of the aids as reference later on the job when doing flow calculations. 

Water Based Fire Protection Systems Plans Review

The Job Aid Solution

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The hardest part of assessing water suppression system plans is determining whether the amount of water flow is sufficient to actually suppress fires throughout the occupancy. This requires a very complicated series of calculations that must take into account pressure loss, pressure demands, friction loss and a variety of other issues for each of the thousands of pipes, fittings and components of the overall system. The formulas and principles involve counter-intuitive physics and complex mathematical calculations, and this is the area where fire inspection students consistently struggle and often fail to master the tasks involved. The Job Aid developed to solve this problem, as displayed below, was dramatically effective in helping students successfully master these tasks.

Water Based Fire Protection Systems Plans Review

The Performance Problem

Training Job Aids are tools that come in a variety of formats They are designed to  help students and users perform difficult work related tasks, both during difficult technical training and as reference on the job. By their nature, job aids focus on helping students and users proceed step by step through complex tasks that, without the job aid, would represent serious performance problems. The example below is a training job aid for fire inspectors who are being trained to review complicated building plans for water-based fire suppression systems (i.e. sprinkler systems) for large commercial occupancies. The purpose of the plans review is to determine if the proposed system will provide sufficient protection and whether or not it can be approved for construction. 


Training Job Aids

Blow up pictures of the actual piping sections addressed in each step of the calculations.

The Complete Calculation Guide

steps, one step for each different section or fitting in the piping system in the plans. The steps are calculated in sequence, from the most remote sprinkler in the plans through every fitting and pipe in the system to the external water source. For each "step", a blow-up drawing of the actual fitting being addressed is super-imposed over the plans on the left facing page, and the full calculations are depicted in the correct place in the NFPA 13 standard calculation form on the right facing page.  Detailed explanations for each part of the calculations are provided, with excerpts from all relevant references depicted.  All mathematical computations are modeled, as is the movement of values in the NFPA 13 calculation form from one entry section to another. 


The complete calculation guide is presented below in its entirety, for review.

 

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Click on image to enlarge.

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