Levitt-Safety Blog

ANSUL® LVS NF-40: Meet the next-generation of Vehicle Fire Protection Agent

Derek McEwenMarket Segment Manager, Fire Systems and Mining TechnologyMarch 10, 2023

Heavy mobile equipment is the backbone of many industries across Canada. Mining, forestry, agriculture and aviation are just a few industries that rely on heavy-duty industrial mobile equipment.

These heavy-duty machines haul, dig, lift, and move large quantities of materials in some of the harshest, most demanding conditions. Due to the sheer size of these machines, everything heightens⁠—bigger parts, more complexity, larger engines, high heat emissions, larger quantities of fuel, higher fluid pressures and consequently, a higher risk of fire.

You rely on your heavy-duty machinery to work around the clock to help keep your equipment and operations running smoothly. Fire protection systems must be ready in a fire emergency to protect the operator, co-workers, workplace and greater environment.

The costs and dangers associated with industrial vehicle fires have increased. Now is the time to reevaluate the state of vehicle suppression solutions and explore how they have evolved to meet the challenging demands of today's industry.

heavy mobile equipment

Back to the basics: The role of fire suppression systems

Four essential elements are required to ignite and sustain a fire: fuel, oxygen, heat, and a chemical chain reaction known as the fire tetrahedron. Fire suppression systems work by removing one or more of these contributing elements using various mechanisms of action. When you eliminate one of the four elements of the fire tetrahedron, the fire will extinguish.

Many types of suppression technologies used in vehicles today address at least one element of the fire tetrahedron. It's crucial that when we remove any one of the elements, they don't return and cause reignition.

The three commonly employed vehicle fire suppression systems are:

1. Dry chemical systems:

These systems use mono ammonium phosphate, a dry chemical, to interrupt the chemical chain reaction of A, B or C class fires. They can also help mitigate the influence of heat, different than cooling with liquid, by melting and forming a crust on top of a superheated surface, separating it from the fire’s fuel.

2. Liquid agent systems:

Liquid agents suppress the fire by interrupting the chemical chain reaction and providing a cooling effect. They also help minimize fire propagation by following the flow of flammable liquids to prevent reflash.

3. Twin-agent systems (also called dual-agent systems):

These systems include dry chemical and liquid agents in a single design, employing the firefighting properties of both agents. Twin-agent methods require two independent storage and discharge installations for each agent, with separate tanks, nozzles, hose networks, bracketry, etc. Still, they may share joint detection and activation componentry to initiate the fire suppression agents.

The evolution of vehicle fire suppression systems

ANSUL® ABC Dry Chemical (Foray) is long-standing as the fire suppressant agent of choice. Then, Ansul® introduced their Liquid Vehicle System (LVS) to complement the dry chemical agent and provide a cooling element.

The dry chemical rapidly extinguishes flames. The liquid agent efficiently reduces the impact of challenging fires by cooling superheated surfaces, proving to be a more effective suppressant agent. This powerful combination made LVS and Twin Agent systems the gold standard for vehicle suppression systems.

However, as the size and scale of mining and tunneling machinery grow, running temperatures increase, and mining operations expand into geographies with harsher operating conditions, the case to develop an ANSUL® LVS single-agent system on all vehicle equipment with superheated surfaces became stronger. 

In addition, increased concern about the environmental impacts of vehicle suppression systems led to regulatory changes regarding the use of per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). When a vehicle fire suppression system discharges, there is an initial release and a subsequent wash-down despite the best clean-up efforts.  

All these factors combined emphasize the importance of addressing and inherently avoiding the risks associated with fire-related incidents. Thus, a single-agent vehicle suppression solution is needed to meet the needs of today’s heavy-duty industrial vehicle operations.

What does this all mean for liquid agent suppressants?

In May 2022, Ansul® introduced LVS NF-40 Non-Fluorinated Liquid Suppression Agent to help meet the fire protection challenges of today's vehicles. This latest innovation delivers a stand-alone liquid agent system technology for Ultra- and Mega-class earthmovers. It delivers extraordinary firefighting performance and exceeds the capabilities of its predecessor.

A recent Bulletin from Ansul® announces the discontinuation of the legacy LVS agent:

Introducing the next generation of ANSUL® LVS NF-40 Non-Fluorinated Liquid Suppression Agent

The new ANSUL® LVS NF-40 Non-Fluorinated Liquid Suppression Agent offers a higher performing, more cost-effective and less complicated solution for fire protection on Ultra and Mega-class equipment compared to the twin-agent systems.

This innovative, biodegradable and freeze-protected agent offers heavy industries an effective stand-alone fire suppression system option for even the most challenging equipment applications. The ANSUL® LVS NF-40 Non-Fluorinated Liquid Suppression Agent can cover diesel, gasoline and most other flammable fuels to help minimize reflash potential.

With the release of the new LVS NF-40 liquid agent, the vehicle industry has a stand-alone option to effectively address the fire suppressant needs for Ultra and Mega-class equipment and its environmental challenges. 

This latest technology advances our understanding of fire suppression and utilizes these new insights to deliver the most effective vehicle systems solution for protecting personnel, property and operational continuity. 

What’s new about the LVS NF-40 solution?

Improved Fire Suppressant performance:
  • Rated to -40 degrees Celsius and guaranteed freeze-protected.
  • Heat dissipation improvements from superheated hazard mass.
  • Stand-alone system extinguishes flames faster than every other system combined.
  • Liquid application has performance in fuel in-depth or “pooled” areas.
  • Less agent is required for operation.
Additional benefits:
  • Nozzle coverages and tank requirement reduction to reduce the system’s footprint.
  • New design coverages for all the new Mega-Class equipment.
  • Features smaller tanks for all types of compact equipment.
  • No new hardware: Have an authorized trained Distributor conduct the process required to complete agent replacement into existing Ansul LVS fire suppression systems.
  • It could potentially reduce costs while maintaining Ansul's signature top performance.

The field of vehicle fire suppression is entering an exciting phase. Be a part of the revolution.

Choose Canada's #1 distributor of Ansul vehicle fire suppression systems!

levitt-safety worker standing on top of CAT 6040 heavy equipment

Levitt-Safety has consistently been Ansul's number one supplier in Canada.

When you choose to work with Levitt-Safety for vehicle fire suppression, you'll receive priority care, better pricing and expert knowledge thanks to our close partnership.

Want to learn more about LVS NF-40? Contact us today!