Safe landings - fire suppression activation for offshore platform helidecks

Tyco Fire & Integrated Solutions
Offshore helideck fire suppression system
Industry / Vertical:
Oil & Gas


Tyco Fire & Integrated Solutions is the world leader in electronic security and fire protection working with more than seven million customers in over 50 nations. This includes 80% of commercial vessels at sea and some of the world’s largest mining and petrochemical operations. These operations rely on Tyco Fire & Integrated Solutions products and services to prevent fires, safeguard fire fighters, and protect people and property through the application of fire suppressant systems and safe crew refuges. The operators of DOL-1 and DOL-2, offshore oil drilling platforms located off the coast of Dohar in the Middle East, engaged the company to design and install the latest foam fire suppressant systems for the helideck.


Aware of the importance of ensuring helicopter access to the platform, especially for crew rescue operations, a remote command and control function for a fire suppression system was conceived. This system would need to operate from a control room on the platform, but also offer the option to hand off control to helicopters or service vessels which may be better positioned to assess risk from fire when approaching the helideck.


The helideck platform is located above the main rig platform and has no operational connections to the rest of the platform, a bespoke wireless solution was required, and Tyco Fire & Integrated Solutions turned to the expertise of specialist Wood & Douglas.

As many of the required control elements would not be centrally located, Wood & Douglas proposed a secure narrowband radio network with a base station and distributed control system (DCS). The control room base station links to the platform DCS which incorporates a further four portable terminals. These can then be used from both helicopter and surface vessels at a range of up to 1,000 metres.

To create the radio system, Wood & Douglas deployed PACSNET 3500, which offers a programmable controller which can be interfaced with Low Power Radio solutions to enable telemetry operation for data acquisition, process control and monitoring. The electronics were then built by Wood & Douglas into ATEX approved enclosures for use in hazardous areas. Due to the stringent requirements of the install, Wood & Douglas engineers worked closely with Tyco Fire & Integrated Solutions, including arranging factory acceptance tests for the customer and providing engineers to support the install of the system on the two platforms.

The platforms now boast a fully operational DCS. The fire suppression system is directly controlled via the radio network from the control centre, however approaching helicopters or service vessels with good observation may also remotely activate the fire suppressant system prior to touch down. In this way the platform meets the needs for safer operations and approach to the platform at critical Maintenance Periods, when the platform may even be operating in un-Manned Mode

  • Bespoke distributed control system
  • Safe operation in hazardous environments
  • Extends operational effectiveness where no prior connectivity existed



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