Data center fire safety

Keep your data center safe and running

Data center fires can be extremely costly. With the SEM-SAFE® high-pressure water mist system from Danfoss, data centers can fight fire efficiently while keeping operations running. This complete system protects lives, limits equipment damage, and minimizes downtime.

SEM-SAFE®: Innovative and reliable data center fire protection

High-pressure water mist fire protection for data centers

Over the last 20 years, gas and chemical-based fire suppression systems have become obsolete. Amongst their disadvantages are the facts that they usually involve releasing chemicals over a wide area and require ventilation systems to be shut down to remove oxygen. Electrical supply often has to be cut, clean-up operations take time, and staff safety, damage limitation, and uptime are often critically compromised.

Instead, most data centers turn to high-pressure water mist solutions. Unlike a traditional wet pipe sprinkler system, high-pressure water mist systems comprise a dedicated data center network of nozzles, which release micro-fine particles of water exactly at the point of the incident. While the localized fire is quickly extinguished, the remainder of the data center’s operations and equipment remain unaffected and can be kept up and running.

Key benefits of SEM-SAFE® for data center fire protection

Keep your data center running while suppressing a fire

Provides instant cooling in the fire zone

Suppress fires without harming people

Keep ventilation running while the fire occurs

Keep doors to the protected data center space open

Extinguish fires with minimal damage to electrical equipment

One of Danfoss' SEM-SAFE fire safety units

SEM-SAFE®: One single system for all data center fire protection needs

Due to its excellent extinguishing properties, the SEM-SAFE® high-pressure water mist system can control and suppress fires, while meeting the operational requirements of a data center.  

  • The high-pressure water mist system is ready immediately after discharge: no need for expensive and time-consuming refilling
  • Keep your data center running while extinguishing the fire
  • No need to shut off ventilation before releasing the water mist system
  • Reduced equipment damage often means less downtime 

Read more on evaluating airflow conditions with high-pressure water mist activation in data centers

Thanks to its modular design, the SEM-SAFE® system is easy to extend to cover more sections as your data center expands.

  • 30% fewer components compared to most competing systems
  • All fire risk areas in a data center can be protected with one fire protection technology for simplicity and reduced cost
  • Small footprint of the pump unit with no or smaller water reservoir required
  • Small pipe sizes and low system weight ensures easy and fast installation, simplified maintenance, and valuable space-saving
  • Ideal for both new building projects and existing facilities 

The SEM-SAFE® high-pressure water mist system uses a clean technology: water.

  • The system can be discharged immediately upon fire detection without any threat to human safety
  • 100% harmless to people and the environment
  • Low water consumption compared to traditional fire sprinklers
  • No gases with a high global warming potential
  • The pumps are lubricated by water and not oil, thus no risk of oil contamination
  • The Danfoss pumps are some of the most efficient pumps on the market
  • A double interlock pre-action system provides added safety for your data center in the unlikely event of accidental release 

The high-pressure water mist nozzles can be activated without the need to seal off or evacuate the area.

  • As water mist both cools the fire and removes the oxygen, it results in efficient fire control
  • Due to the cooling effect of water mist, re-ignition is avoided
  • The SEM-SAFE® water mist system is ready for re-use immediately after a fire
  • No over-pressurization of the fire-affected area when the SEM-SAFE® system is activated 

With fewer nozzles required thanks to optimized spacing and the need for only one pump unit for all applications, installation and service costs and time are considerably reduced.

  • Water damage is kept at a minimum due to the low water consumption and because small water droplets evaporate immediately during discharge
  • Can be deployed instantly, resulting in less fire damage
  • Using only pure water, the system provides the best possible protection of equipment and human lives with no messy residue
  • Pumps are water-lubricated and hence virtually maintenance-free 

The intelligent use of water for fire safety

Unlike traditional fire suppression systems for data centers, SEM-SAFE® forces water through nozzles at high pressure forming a super-fine mist that has a two-fold extinguishing effect.

As well as cooling the fire like traditional sprinkler systems, it simultaneously starves the fire of oxygen — the way gas-based fire suppression systems do. When the mist comes into contact with fire flames, it evaporates and expands minimum 1,700 times, displacing fire flames and quickly extinguishing the fire.

Features and benefits of the high-pressure water mist system

The key benefit of high-pressure water mist fire suppression systems is the extremely low levels of water used. Using a high-pressure pump, clean water is forced through a specially designed, tested network of stainless steel pipework and nozzles at 60 or 100bar. The microfine water droplets emitted have sizes ranging from 50 to 200 µm. 

With this localized fire response, only the nozzle at the affected point is triggered and hardly any trace of water remains after activation. The area does not need to be sealed in the same way that gas-based fire protection systems require, and ventilation does not need to be turned off. Energy supply and data center operations can continue as usual. 

See how SEM-SAFE® compares to low-pressure and sprinkler systems

Fire suppression nozzle

  • Danfoss high-pressure water mist nozzle
  • Highest market spacing (5.5m)
  • 100% capacity and spray pattern tested

High-pressure pumps for fire suppression systems

  • Lubricated by water, making the pump maintenance free
  • World’s lightest and most compact
  • 95% energy efficient and very low pulsation to reduce noise

Stainless steel valves for fire suppression systems

  • Compact
  • Easy installation and operation
  • Dirt resistant and high-corrosion proof

High-pressure water mist pipes and fittings

  • Smaller outer pipe diameter
  • Short lead time
  • High quality 

FM approved system for data center fire suppression

Our solutions are used in many data centers around the world, supporting fire safety on building level and room level. The SEM-SAFE® high-pressure water mist system is FM approved and comprises a high-pressure modular pump unit, section valves, piping and water mist nozzles.

The system is safe, efficient, and environmentally friendly. With small pipe dimensions, large coverage, minimal water consumption, a compact pump unit and simple design, SEM-SAFE® high-pressure water mist is the optimum solution to protect against a fire. These components also allow for systems to be easily coordinated during the installation process.

Installed fire protection systems

Discover our cases

With Danfoss, you can tap into an extensive experience with developing fire protection solutions that protect expensive HVAC equipment, mission critical applications, sensitive equipment and other critical assets. We have been at the forefront of developing data center fire protection systems from the early stages of the industry. 

Danfoss: Leading developers of high-pressure water mist fire suppression systems

Danfoss Fire Safety operates in-house research, development, and manufacturing facilities of all critical components for our high-pressure water mist fire protection system.

Our fire safety engineering team understands the local regulatory regime just as much as we understand the realities and uncertainties inherent in fire safety in data centers. We work with clients to provide comprehensive support from the design stage, spatial coordination, technical design, installation, rigorous testing and commissioning, handover, maintenance and repair services through our offices, associates, and agents worldwide.

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