Latest innovations and products in the Fire, Security and Safety sections of the construction industry.

Axis EN and MxPro 5 fire panels from global systems leader, Advanced, have been certified by FM Approvals to the EN 54 standard, becoming the first UK-manufactured fire alarm control panels to attain this accreditation

The FM APPROVED diamond is one of the most prestigious certification marks in the world. It is issued by FM Approvals, a member of the FM Global Group, for products that adhere to the highest property conservation standards in quality, technical integrity and performance. It is a mark of quality and performance that is relevant for any engineer, specifier or building owner wishing to install fire systems that meet the highest property conservation standards.

Advanced’s products lead the market in performance, quality and ease-of-use and the company has been at the forefront of standards leadership for decades across many of the 80 countries it operates in. As well as holding FM Approval for EN54 Parts 2 & 4, the Axis EN and MxPro 5 fire panels were among the first to obtain EN54 Part 13 from VdS. The FM Approval of Advanced’s fire panels also included an inspection of Advanced’s manufacturing sites as it moves into its state-of-the-art HQ in Newcastle in the North East of England. The MxPro 5 and Axis EN labels and branding are being updated with the FM certification in early 2019.

John Newton, Head of Products at Advanced, said: “Receiving FM Approval for our Axis EN and MxPro 5 fire panels is a proud moment for everyone at Advanced and is significant for all of our customers and partners. It further differentiates Advanced as a business that has achieved high standards in fire systems quality, technical integrity and performance globally. That difference is significant, and it means that companies across the UK, Europe, the Middle East and Africa now have access to our industry-leading range of MxPro 5 and Axis EN products.”

The MxPro 5 multi-protocol panel and Axis EN systems panel are certified to EN54 Parts 2, 4 & 13 and come in one-to-eight-loop variants as standard, with further custom build options available. Both product ranges are easily configured into high speed, 200-panel networks, covering huge areas with tens of thousands of field devices. They include high performance features such as Advanced’s complete false alarm reduction software, AlarmCalm, and TouchControl, Advanced’s control and touchscreen repeaters that feature Active Maps and zone plans. Advanced are specified from the smallest to the largest buildings globally including in some of the most prestigious developments such as; The Shard in London, Abu Dhabi’s International Airport and Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia.

FM Approvals is an international leader in third-party testing and certification services for property loss prevention products and services for use in commercial and industrial facilities to verify they meet rigorous loss prevention standards of quality, technical integrity and performance. FM Approvals employs a worldwide certification process that is backed by scientific research and testing, and over a century of experience. The FM APPROVED mark is recognized and respected worldwide.

Advanced’s Axis EN and MxPro 5 fire panels are now listed in FM Approvals’ on-line Approval Guide which houses real-time information about tens of thousands of products and services certified by FM Approvals.

Advanced is a world leader in the development and manufacture of intelligent fire systems. The legendary performance, quality and ease of use of its products sees Advanced specified in locations all over the world, from single panel installations to large, multi-site networks. Advanced’s products include complete fire detection systems, multi-protocol fire panels, extinguishing control, fire paging and false alarm management systems.

For further information please visit

One of London’s most prestigious hotels, The Berkeley in Knightsbridge, London, is now protected by a Lux Intelligent emergency lighting test system and MxPro fire panels from Advanced.

With a history dating back to the 1800s, the current 214-bedroom Berkeley Hotel was built in 1972, incorporating elements of the original building, and it has recently been subject to a major refurbishment covering all bedrooms, suites, terraces, the lobby, the restaurant, the iconic Blue Bar and the main entrance.

Lewis Bowden, spokesperson for Surrey-based Alarm Commuication Ltd, the company that specified and installed the system, explained: “Hotels require state of the art emergency lighting systems to safeguard their staff and residents in an emergency situation, helping to facilitate an orderly evacuation and also to guide firefighters coming into the building. As a long-time Advanced partner, we believed that Lux Intelligent, alongside Advanced MxPro fire panels, was the right choice for The Berkeley, offering the stand-out capabilities, features and reliability required of a system of this type.

More than 200 Advanced luminaires have been installed in the historic hotel, on Wilton Place, which is part of the same stable as Claridge’s. They are monitored and controlled by a Lux Intelligent panel, connected to the building’s fire system. Most of the luminaires are from the Advanced LED-Lite range, which can be recessed into ceilings, offering an aesthically pleasing solution in the public areas of the prestigious building.

Ken Bullock, regional sales manager for Advanced, said: “Our Lux Intelligent system offers many benefits including real peace of mind, the ability to work with almost any light, and cost and admin savings. Alsongside the MxPro multiprotocol fire panels, we’re proud to be providing market-leading protection to the staff and residents at the Berkeley.”

Lux Intelligent, ensures all emergency lighting is functioning and compliant to BS5266-1. The system can be retrofitted onto existing wiring and luminaires, keeping installation costs to a minimum. It is one of the most flexible systems available with panels supporting 1-4 loops, 249 devices per loop and up to 200 panels in a network. Lux Intelligent is also compatible with most third party lights and luminaires, including LEDs, giving installers and end users unprecedented purchasing freedom.

Lux Intelligent systems can be remotely managed and monitored using web and iOS apps via the Lux Intelligent Cloud. Users can add any site in their portfolio to the cloud service and get live system data from site, right down to device level. Fault, test and maintenance reports can be generated from a whole site right down to individual devices. These can be shared with colleagues or maintenance partners in a click.

The MxPro is the industry’s unbeatable multiprotocol fire panel. Built on almost two-decades of market leadership it offers greater freedom to specifiers, end users and installers and includes two panel ranges, the flagship EN54-2, 4 & 13 approved MxPro 5, and the benchmark MxPro 4. Both come in 1-8 loop formats, are compatible with Apollo, Argus, Hochiki and Nittan protocols and can be networked into 200-panel strong systems.

Advanced is a world leader in the development and manufacture of intelligent fire systems. Its legendary performance, quality and ease-of-use sees its products used in prestigious and challenging locations all over the world, from single panel installations to large multi-site networks. Advanced products include complete fire detection systems, multi-protocol fire panels, emergency light testing, extinguishing control and fire paging systems.

More details on Lux Intelligent can be found on the website

Fire safety start-up company Lite4Life has adopted Aico’s unique Ei414 Fire / Carbon Monoxide (CO) Alarm Interface into its Multiwatch tower block fire safety system and AlightforLife Directional Way Finder Safety Light. The Ei414 is being used to alert these systems in the event of an activation from Aico Fire and CO Alarms. In the case of AlightforLife it activates LEDS pointing to the nearest exit.

Andy Cunningham, Managing Director of Lite4Life, selected the Ei414 based on its ability and Aico’s reputation in the marketplace: “It is so much more user friendly than anything else on the market. We are finding that using the Ei414 to send messages and signals to report on alarm status at the earliest opportunity gives us valuable minutes in the protection of people and property from a potential devastating fire. The recent Hackitt report for High Risk Residential Buildings (HRRB), recommends that high risk buildings are to be managed and our product, using the Ei414, can provide the solution for many of the points identified by Dame Judith Hackitt. We at Lite4life, feel it archaic to rely on a member of the public to notify the fire rescue services, often after the fire has been alight for some time. A fundamental change must be highlighted in the way we can approach fire protection in high rise residential buildings and Aico go a long way in supporting our vision.

“All of our future projects, including those addressing the HRRB standard, will be using Aico products. We are aligning ourselves with tried and tested companies to deliver demonstrable cost saving with innovation. Working with Aico has been fantastic; with our relationship with Andy Speake [National Technical Manager] and the Regional Specification Managers, why would we use anyone else?”

The Ei414 Fire/CO Alarm Interface from Aico provides a dedicated connection between Aico Smoke and CO Alarms and third party safety systems. It is frequently used to connect alarms to Telecare/Warden Call systems, Sprinkler systems and BS5839 Part 1 panel based Fire Alarm systems. The connection can be made wirelessly with Aico’s award winning RadioLINK Radio Frequency (RF) technology or hard wired directly between the two devices.

The Ei414 can be powered directly from the mains or from a 12-24V DC supply and has built-in tamper-proof rechargeable Lithium Cells which will power the device in the event of any mains failure. Reliable, easy to install and use, it features a ‘test’ setting to test the entire system including a signal being transmitted to the third party system.

Aico, an Ei company, is the market leader in residential fire and CO protection in the UK. All alarms are designed and built in Ireland specifically to meet the UK standards and regulations. For more information please visit or contact Aico on 01691 664100 or email

Life safety provision within buildings has rightfully been under severe scrutiny in recent months, as it is vital to ensure a building provides a safe environment for its residents. Smoke control systems are a vital and integral part of a building’s life safety system and regulations already exist that place a legal responsibility upon a building’s owners to ensure the systems are regularly maintained to a specified standard.

Every smoke control system contains products that are subject to mandated quality standards to ensure that in the case of an emergency, they operate correctly and enable common escape routes to be kept free of smoke, aiding safe escape. In addition they also allow safe entry for fire services to tackle the fire.

In July 2013, the Construction Products Regulations (CPR) mandated the CE marking of all products used within the construction industry that are covered by a harmonised European standard (hEN). For smoke ventilation systems, the suite of product standards used in the UK and Europe is the EN12101 family.

There are a number of applicable standards within this family including EN12101-2, which covers ‘smoke and heat exhaust ventilators (SHEVs), prEN12101-9 for ’control systems’ and EN12101-10 that covers ’power supplies’. This simply means that for these products to be CE marked, they must comply with the relevant EN12101 standard.

Looking specifically at EN12101-2 2003, SHEV’s, both vertical and inclined vents, utilised for life safety smoke ventilation systems, automatically fall within scope of the CPR. This adds stricter testing criteria to ensure product performance meets the required standards and are compliant.

A key element of this standard dictates that the vent and actuator must be tested together, as a system, to all specifications within the annexes of the standard. Additionally, the tests must be conducted at an accredited facility.

The results of all tests are then declared via the certification process proving compliance to the CPR. The certification process also covers the fabrication quality of the vent, as a SHEV carries a higher level of manufacture classification, ‘System 1’, compared to a ‘standard’ window, which is ‘System 3’. If the actuator is fitted on site it must also be delivered under an audited process to ensure the solution is identical to how it was tested.

Products from most leading façade system providers are now tested with SE Controls actuators to this standard, utilising the company’s extensive range of uniquely UK manufactured products.

Merely fitting an actuator to a vent or window, unless they have been tested together, does not provide a compliant solution and compromises the effectiveness of the life safety system.

Non-compliance is policed in the main by Approved Inspectors and Building Control Officers who now look for proof of certification under the directions of BS7346-8 – 2013 ‘Components for smoke control systems Code of Practice for planning, design, installation, commissioning and maintenance’ throughout the construction process.

Complacency and lack of understanding is the issue at hand

It is a common misunderstanding that the Approved Inspector takes responsibility for certification via inspection, however this is not the case, as the responsibility lies with the person placing the product onto the market. Yes, inspectors and clients should and will pick up non-compliance, but they are not fully accountable.

Unfortunately, if proof of compliance cannot be provided, it is too late to sign-off the building, resulting in delays and compensation claims under damage clauses. However, should a non-compliant smoke vent fail during a fire incident, the consequences are far more severe not only to the occupants, but also to the company whose products failed to meet the standard.

Alongside a range of actuators, SE Controls also offers the OSLoop, OS2 and PSU Smoke Control Systems, all of which are compliant to EN12101-10.

From a building design perspective, many SE Controls actuators and control systems are now available as BIM objects, which include extensive product information and COBie data. Whilst this is a complex set of regulations, compliance and a certified solution is verified by a Declaration of Performance (DoP), combined with their delivery qualifications, both on and off-site.

The DoP contains reference to the Notified Approved Body that underwrites the process and the test references. It also contains the performance criteria against the test annexes in the form of declared essential characteristics and is signed by a Director of the company placing the SHEV onto the market.

Whether installation is carried out by SE Controls or an approved SE Controls Installation Partner, a Notified Approved Body will have already underwritten the process.

The entire industry is responsible for ensuring the highest possible standards are met and maintained for life safety systems, however for building owners and product manufacturers, when it comes to smoke ventilations systems, if a DoP cannot be produced, the system is not compliant.

For more information please visit

The tragic events of the Grenfell disaster last year cast a long shadow and one that will remain with the industry for decades to come. Of course lessons will be learnt and perhaps at long last due attention will be paid to safety above other considerations when deciding upon risk critical building products such as fire doors and fire door assemblies. More immediately however we all await the inevitable changes to legislation and good practice, following Dame Judith Hackitt’s independent review and how it will shape future product specification, installation and ongoing use throughout the life cycle of the building.

Understandably this has resulted in concern amongst specifiers and stake holders as they try to evaluate current practices and plan for potential future changes, especially in respect to high-rise and complex buildings. After all the specification of fire doors is not a game, and as we all know can have far reaching consequences. It is little wonder therefore, that for specifiers in the modular and off-site construction sector using Vicaima products, that feeling of anxiety and apprehension regarding past, current and future use of fire doors is not an issue; providing of course that they have been correctly installed.

Of course the fire door in itself does not provide the complete solution, this can only be achieved with compatible and rigorously tested components, including the correct frame and ironmongery. This is why alongside fire doors, Vicaima also manufacture an extensive range of door kit solutions to create a complete, fully tested assembly via our Easi-Fit and Portaro brands. These products include a full scope of performance characteristics for current and future industry specifications, namely:

  • Fire Tested to BS 476 Part 22 and BS EN 1634-1:2014
  • Secure by Design approved products
  • Acoustic performance, both inherent and additional as required
  • FD30 to FD90 rated, with fire and smoke solutions
  • Durability with DD171 and EN 1192 severe duty rating
  • Mobility provision via glazing and dimensional flexibility
  • Environmentally sound (all products are FSC Certified)
  • Long life with a 10 Year Guarantee

As specialist fire performance door manufacturers Vicaima have long understood the need to go above and beyond industry norms and simple compliance to provide ultimate peace of mind. Vicaima has always prided itself on the construction of its fire doors, never cutting corners or compromising, regardless of whether it’s a humble painted door or a cutting edge designer product. After all sometimes it is what you cannot see that makes the difference in a safe fire door. This is perhaps best illustrated with the Vicaima standard FD30 fire door. Manufactured using fully solid cores and a traditional stile and rail perimeter to enable reliable fixing of ironmongery i.e. hinges, door closures etc.

Among the many important recommendations outlined within the Independent Review, is the need for third party accreditation when it comes to fire doors. Here Vicaima adhere to not one but two nationally recognised and highly reputable bodies to verify the performance of our fire performance products, namely BWF-Certifire and BM TRADA Q-Mark. In each case traceability is assured with the use of tamper evident labels and plastic plugs to provide clear understanding of fire rating and of course origin of manufacture. You or indeed future custodians of fitted fire doors will be left in no doubt simply by looking at the top edge of any Vicaima fire door. Here crystal clear identification marking alongside a detailed inkjet stamp system to identify exact batch and date of manufacture, enables Vicaima to establish complete control of our products throughout their lifecycle.

Of course fire safety does not need to equate to mundane or style less performance solutions. Occupier and environment user satisfaction should never be compromised and with Vicaima innovative design options the scope is almost limitless; encompassing as it does finish foil, veneer, laminates and paint lacquered surfaces; with cost effective products for this developing sector.

For more information regarding Vicaima Fire and other performance solutions visit

Global fire systems leader, Advanced, has launched a new guide to fire protection for historic and heritage sites.

Historic and heritage sites present unique challenges to end users, specifiers and installers. The new brochure is designed to help key stakeholders understand some of the solutions available for the challenges they face. It addresses many common problems in ensuring adequate active fire protection, tackling the challenges of minimising aesthetic impact, quick, safe evacuation and eliminating unwanted alarms, among many more.

Advanced has a global reputation for excellence in the sector and its system, across EN and UL approvals are protecting some of the most famous, valuable and most visited sites anywhere including: Hagia Sophia, Istanbul; Durham Cathedral; The Magna Carta at Lincoln Castle; Iona Abbey; the Natural History Museum and Trinity Episcopal Church, Rhode Island.

Aston Bowles, Head of Marketing at Advanced, said “Advanced systems are protecting some of the most famous and valuable heritage and cultural assets worldwide. Historic structures present unique challenges for the fire system industry, but innovation is delivering significant choice and performance gains for end users, specifiers and responsible people in the sector. The new brochure aims to offer insight into the sector and the solutions that can be used.”

Advanced is a world leader in the development and manufacture of intelligent fire systems. The legendary performance, quality and ease of use of its products sees Advanced specified in locations all over the world, from single panel installations to large, multi-site networks. Advanced’s products include complete fire detection systems, multi-protocol fire panels, extinguishing control, fire paging and false alarm management systems.

To request a copy of the Historic Sites Brochure please contact:

A key driver in the successful delivery of the UK’s £42.6 billion HS2 project, the new National College for High Speed Rail, is now protected by industry-leading fire panels from Advanced.

Located in Doncaster, a town historically known for its prominent role in rail engineering and maintenance, the college occupies 76,000 sq ft of teaching and workshop space, with specialist training installations, including 150 metres of external track and catenary. It will train thousands of engineers to meet HS2’s future needs, as well as those of the wider rail sector. With 2,000 apprenticeship opportunities set to be created by HS2, and 25,000 people employed during construction, there has been, and continues to be high demand for appropriately skilled workers.

The Advanced MxPro panels were specified by the team at GBE Fire and Security, who were appointed by main contractor Briggs and Forrester to specify, install and commission the fire system at the site.

GBE’s Business Development Manager, Andy Westgarth, commented “We’re thrilled to have been involved in this project. The college will create many opportunities for young people and make a major contribution to the Northern Powerhouse. With sensitive installations, including electrical catenary, a high-quality fire system is essential and, as a longstanding Advanced partner, we feel that MxPro panels are the ideal solution.”

MxPro is the fire industry’s leading multiprotocol fire system solution. It offers customers a choice of two panel ranges, four detector protocols and a completely open installer network, backed up by free training and support. MxPro panels can be used in single loop, single panel format or easily configured into high speed, multi-loop panels in 200 node networks covering huge areas. MxPro’s legendary ease of installation and configuration and wide peripheral range make it customisable to almost any application.

Neil Parkin, Advanced Sales Manager for the North, commented “This is the latest in a series of high-profile rail sector installations for Advanced panels. We have worked with GBE on many projects and it’s great to be working with them on such a positive project. MxPro ticks all the boxes for the National College for High Speed Rail, combining proven reliability with innovation and ease-of-use.”

Advanced are members of the Rail Industry Fire Association (RIFA) and have panels installed in a number of other rail-related buildings, including the Tottenham Court Road Crossrail station, almost 100 London Underground stations, the Hitachi Rail Europe factory in Newton Aycliffe and the Tyne & Wear Metro.

MxPro is Advanced’s flagship range of multiprotocol panels, offers customers a choice of two panel ranges, four detector protocols and a completely open installer network that enjoys free training and support.

Advanced is a world leader in the development and manufacture of intelligent fire systems. The legendary performance, quality and ease-of-use of its products sees Advanced specified in locations all over the world, from single panel installations to large multi-site networks. Advanced’s products include complete fire detection systems, multi-protocol fire panels, extinguishing control, fire paging and false alarm management systems.

More details can be found on the website at

CE-Marked Astra 3003 concealed door closers have proved to be the perfect partner for concealed hinges recent tests, making them the seamless choice for high performance and fire doors wherever clean, refined design lines are called for.

Modern concealed hinges paired with the CE-Marked Astra 3003 closer – both designed to be unobtrusive in situ – have successfully completed nearly three quarter of a million cycles on Astra’s in-house test-rig. This is well in excess of the 200,000 cycles required by the European standard (BS EN1154) and marks a huge success for Astra’s best-selling concealed closer.

With so many concealed hinges on the market, made from different materials and with different pivot points, it is vital that they are tested successfully with the closer to ensure optimum performance. Astra 3000 Series closers are increasingly being specified with concealed hinges by architects, designers and architectural ironmongers on projects where clean design lines and elegant aesthetics are the priority. Specifiers now have the peace of mind of ‘guaranteed performance’ along with the pleasing design of concealed hardware.

Concealed closers are the obvious choice in settings where visual appeal is paramount since they are not visible when the door is closed, avoiding the somewhat institutional and ungainly appearance of overhead closers. Designers select Astra 3000 series closers because, with full adjustability, they are powerful enough to handle doors of almost any weight and width. Unlike other concealed closers on the market Astra 3003 size three closers are CE-Marked for use on fire doors. Astra is well known for its door closer range and the Lancashire-based company can demonstrate many years’ experience in the sector and carries out all its own R&D in-house. It exports its British door closers across the globe via a network of distributors and partner companies.

For more information please visit

Two divisions of the global building materials manufacturer Kingspan Group will be sharing their extensive knowledge and expertise at FIREX International this June.

The exhibition, which takes place at ExCeL London, runs from 19th – 21st June and will bring together experts from across the industry to demonstrate and discuss the latest life safety solutions and share best practice when it comes to fire safety. Located on stand A590, both Kingspan Insulated Panels and Kingspan Insulation will be showcasing a variety of products, solutions and services which will help contractors and specifiers to meet requirements. The stand will also host a live simulation of a roofer’s torch test similar to ISO 11925-3 (Reaction to fire tests: Ignitability of building products subjected to direct impingement of flame) at intervals throughout the show.

Kingspan’s expert technical and sales teams will be on hand throughout the three-day event to answer any questions visitors may have and provide up-to-date information.

Kingspan are also sponsoring the first day of the 5th International Tall Building Fire Safety Conference, which is running alongside the FIREX Exhibition. Technical Director at Kingspan Insulated Panels, UK & Ireland, Tony Ryan, will be delivering a talk on Fire Testing of Tall Building Façade Systems on 19th June.

Kingspan Insulated Panels Website:
Kingspan Insulation Website:

ROCKWOOL is pleased to announce that as the world’s largest producer of non-combustible stone wool insulation, it will be unveiling its new FirePro® DuctRock® system at Firex International 2018 at ExCeL London between 19th – 21st June.

Visitors to the ROCKWOOL stand A285 will be able to view a demo model and installation video of the new FirePro® DuctRock® system. Fully tested to EN1366-1 and EN1366-8 for Fire Resisting Ductwork and Smoke Extract Systems, it incorporates a suite of easily installed, cost effective solutions to provide up to 120 minutes fire resistance. The system will provide contractors with the widest range possible for rectangular ducts, ensuring a solution for all eventualities. As well as the DuctRock® system, ROCKWOOL will also be exhibiting a wide selection of other solutions from the comprehensive FirePro® range.

The FirePro® range of products provides firestopping and fire resistance solutions to protect throughout the building, slowing the spread of fire, protecting escape routes and allowing valuable time for safe evacuation and firefighting.

Beyond ROCKWOOL insulation’s inherent fire-resistant qualities, ROCKWOOL’s specialist range of products and technical tools help installers, contractors and specifiers conform to current fire regulations. The specialist FirePro® range incorporates solutions for building applications such as: structural protection, penetration seals, linear joints, cavity barriers, HVAC and smoke management systems.

ROCKWOOL’s stone wool insulation is capable of withstanding temperatures in excess of 1000°C and has been awarded the highest possible European classification: A1 non-combustible. It provides vital fire protection in buildings, keeping people safe, as well as minimising damage to valuable assets.

ROCKWOOL is committed to enriching the lives of everyone who comes into contact with its solutions. The company’s expertise is perfectly suited to tackle many of today’s biggest sustainability and development challenges, from energy consumption and noise pollution to fire resilience, water scarcity and flooding.

For more information, visit ROCKWOOL on stand A285, or visit