In Episode 11 of The Mission Critical Fire Protection Podcast, Lee Kaiser sits down with ORR's Chuck Hatfield. Chuck discusses his tenure in the fire suppression industry, his take on engineered fire protection, different types of sprinkler systems, CO2 fire suppression, and they discuss the future of mission critical fire protection.
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Welcome to MCFP meet the experts where ORR protection's VP of engineering, Lee Kaiser interviews, industry insiders on all things Mission-critical fire protection.
Lee Kaiser (00:20):
I'm here with Chuck Hatfield, today business development manager, focusing on the power generation industry. Chuck, thanks for joining me. I want to ask, you know, you work for ORR protection systems, but tell me how you got into fire protection.
Chuck Hatfield (00:33):
I started out as a firefighter outside the city of Atlanta for about five years. And from there I went to work for a suppression manufacturer that made a chemical called F 500, which fire departments use. It's used in fire protection systems as well. And from there I learned about industrial fire protection developed training classes for fire brigades and primarily in the power generation.
Lee Kaiser (00:58):
So, started from the fire service and moved into, you know, the fire protection industry.
Chuck Hatfield (01:05):
Lee Kaiser (01:05):
Chuck Hatfield (01:06):
From there, I went on to work for a couple of other fire protection integrators similar to what ORR protection does. And now I'm here at ORR
Lee Kaiser (01:16):
We're really glad to have you Chuck. What do you think one of your favorite projects is that you've worked on
Chuck Hatfield (01:23):
Um probably a low pressure CO2 project where we completely renovated and upgraded a 30 plus year old low pressure CO2 system and added all new tanks new releasing panels and that sort of thing.
Lee Kaiser (01:40):
What was the application for that?
Chuck Hatfield (01:42):
Uh turbine protection. Okay. At a power plant
Lee Kaiser (01:45):
Was it steam turbine or.
Chuck Hatfield (01:46):
It was a gas fired turbine,
Lee Kaiser (01:47):
Gas fired turbine. Wow. That's great. Yeah, I bet you'd probably done a lot of those.
Chuck Hatfield (01:51):
Lee Kaiser (01:52):
Are there any projects that you haven't done that you'd like to do? Is there like a dream project you can think of?
Chuck Hatfield (01:57):
I would say doing a complete new power generation facility.
Lee Kaiser (02:01):
From the ground up?
Chuck Hatfield (02:02):
From the ground up.
Lee Kaiser (02:03):
What do you think that will look like? What is it going to be a steam plan or is it going to be a gas turbine?
Chuck Hatfield (02:08):
It would be a gas turbine at this point. We see that and hear from the turbine manufacturers that there will be some, there is some future of gas turbines that will be built in the next few years.
Lee Kaiser (02:19):
Beyond gas turbines, what other power generation things do you think will be happening in the future?
Chuck Hatfield (02:24):
Everybody's putting in battery storage at this point from utilities to other manufacturing for backup power.
Lee Kaiser (02:31):
Are their fire protection opportunities and battery storage installation?
Chuck Hatfield (02:34):
Yes. A lot of early detection, a lot of early suppression as well as specialized suppression that should be coming down.
Lee Kaiser (02:41):
Well, I know you know, that's an emerging field and, and lots to learn about that battery storage applications. So is there a fire protection product type that you feel that you're an expert in?
Chuck Hatfield (02:56):
Um probably CO2 suppression around the turbines. Maybe other clean agent systems in the control rooms of the power facilities.
Lee Kaiser (03:06):
So, you know, there's not a lot of CO2 people running around the US these days. What/how does one learn about CO2 systems?
Chuck Hatfield (03:16):
I think a lot of field experience and then working closely with the manufacturers of CO2 taking some of their training classes and working closely with them on design.
Lee Kaiser (03:26):
Okay. So a lot of that knowledge is probably housed with the manufacturers and then it works it out to the field by going and seeking out, you think?
Chuck Hatfield (03:35):
Lee Kaiser (03:36):
Are there any types of industries that you feel that you've got special expertise in, maybe something besides power generation facilities?
Chuck Hatfield (03:45):
Pulp and paper. I've had experience working in paper mills and some oil and gas as well, pipelines and some refinery.
Lee Kaiser (03:56):
So you know, on pulp and paper, I'm not real familiar with those industries. What are the fire protection opportunities in a pulp and paper plant?
Chuck Hatfield (04:04):
A lot of alarm and detection. They use a lot of sprinkler systems for suppression. Again, they have control rooms, they have chemicals. So there's, there's a lot of different types of gas, detections monitoring.
Lee Kaiser (04:17):
Are there any available alternatives to people that might be considering getting rid of their CO2 system for safety reasons?
Chuck Hatfield (04:24):
Yeah, so we,uwe are looking into an, some of the turbine manufacturers around turbine protection have approved different types of water mist. There's three main water mist companies out there that the utilities are looking at. Also the turbine manufacturers are looking at as well.
Lee Kaiser (04:41):
And so why water mist, instead of CO2,
Chuck Hatfield (04:44):
It doesn't reduce the oxygen in the space. So it's safe for someone to be working around the turbine and not having to lock out the suppression system. Therefore you still keep your employees safe and other contractors safe as they work around the turbine or the enclosed area that's protected with water mist,
Lee Kaiser (05:03):
But does water mist work as well to control a fire?
Chuck Hatfield (05:07):
It works in the, in the method of cooling the fire and not so much eliminating the oxygen,
Lee Kaiser (05:12):
But it still puts fires out.
Chuck Hatfield (05:13):
Chuck Hatfield (05:14):
Okay. Well Chuck Hatfield business development manager of power generation, thanks so much for spending some time and telling us your story today. Thanks a lot.
Lee Kaiser (05:22):
Thank you, Lee.
Speaker 1 (05:24):
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