ADA Tech Receives Contract for “Hush House” Fire Suppression Technology


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ADA Tech Receives Contract for “Hush House” Fire Suppression Technology

By Jim Douglas

October 11, 2010 - ADA Technologies, Inc. received a $1,155,453 contract to adapt its Fine Water Mist fire suppression technology for use in U.S. Air Force Aviation Engine Test Facilities, known as “hush houses.”

Hush houses, designed to passively suppress aircraft engine noise during stationary testing, are particularly susceptible to fires due to the presence of pressurized jet fuel and hydraulic fluid. At risk is the hush house itself, test personnel, and aircraft that can be worth up to $200 million each.

Hush house is a generic term for an enclosed, noise suppressed, aircraft jet engine testing facility for the testing of installed or uninstalled jet engines under actual load conditions. Jet engines and aircraft can be tested either indoors or outdoors.


Sponsored by the Air Force Research Laboratory, the one-year contract will enable ADA to define, design, build and test a prototype to validate the performance of a fine water mist fire suppression system in a test environment representative of hush houses. ADA’s goal is to produce a cost-effective and efficient fine water mist fire suppression system that provides superior fire protection to high-value aircraft,” said Jim Butz, ADA vice president.

ADA’s Fine Water Mist fire suppression technology was developed as an inexpensive and highly-effective method of extinguishing specialized fires, such as those that could occur on spacecraft and civil aircraft. The technology uses patented and patent-pending ADA hardware to generate water droplets of the size found to be most effective for fire suppression.

Fine water mist does not cause water damage to structures and, because it uses only inert chemicals, water and nitrogen, the technology does not pose a health or environmental hazard like commonly used halon and carbon dioxide suppressants.

Historically, halon fire suppressant systems have been used to protect the 152 hush houses worldwide. However, because halons are Class I Ozone Depleting Substances, they have been banned from manufacture by the Montreal Protocol and by the end of 2010 will be banned from commercial purchase by the U.S. government.


ADA’s proprietary Fine Water Mist fire suppression design work began in 1993. The firm has received nearly $4 million in funding from NASA, the Department of Defense and the U.S. Air Force for continued development of the environmentally-friendly and human-safe fine water mist technology. The technology is also useful in multiple industrial fire suppression applications.

ADA Technologies, Inc. is a research, development, and commercialization company that specializes in creating and converting innovative technologies to commercial successes. Headquartered in Littleton, Colorado, ADA has received more than 180 research grants totaling more than $50 million.


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