Firefly Spark Detection Systems

Firefly’s Spark and Hot Body Detectors are designed to detect ALL potential ignition sources such as sparks, glowing and hot particles. These detectors are insensitive to daylight minimising false alarms.



Spark Detection Systems

Firefly Detectors Standard Spark Detectors
  • Lead sulphide cell (PbS), indication of IR radiation in the long wave IR range (1,5-3,3um)
  • Silicon photocell, indication of IR radiation in the short-wave IR-range and in the wavelength of visible light (0,8-1,1um)
  • Detects the energy and temperature from sparks or hot particles down to 250°C (HD250) or 400°C (HD400).

(Note: a dust cloud of wood dust will ignite at about 470°C and layers of wood dust even lower, about 260°C)

  • Firefly is the only supplier with FM-approved detectors for detection of hot black particles with temperatures as low as 250°C


  • Detects the light from a spark (detection temperature from about 650°C)


  • Detects sparks and hot particles with relevant energy (20mJ in 800mm distance)
  • Detects extremely small energy sources (e.g. small sparks) that are not capable of igniting a fire
  • Insensitive to black hot particles
  • NOT sensitive to daylight
  • Minimises’ false alarms


  • Sensitive to daylight
  • Risk for false alarms


  • The half spherical shape of the lens will be self-cleaning in pneumatic transports


  • Flat lens – not self-cleaning


Why FireFly – Detection

TrueDetect technology™

Firefly’s TrueDetect technology™ enables detection down to the right ignition temperatures and energy levels for different materials without being sensitive to daylight. A Firefly True IR detector is based on led sulphide cells (PbS) and is therefore insensitive to daylight. Conventional spark detectors are based on silicone photo-diodes (Si) and will therefore detect visible light and near infrared radiation (i.e. temperatures from about 650°C or higher).

Firefly Firefly Spark Detection Systems

Multi-checkpoint technology™

As the only supplier in the world, Firefly equips all its True IR detectors with the patented Multi-checkpoint technology™ to ensure detection quickness and reliability. Using a derivative measuring principle, Firefly True IR detectors can detect dangerous particles at transport speeds up to 50m/sec.

Firefly Firefly Spark Detection Systems

Detection range and field of vision
The Firefly detector has true 180 degree vision allowing one detector in 800mm ducts. The detected energy level is
20 mJ at 800 mm distance (or 80 mJ at 1600 mm distance, with reference to the “Inverse-Square Law”)


Other manufacturer’s detectors with only 110° view angle, require at least 2 detectors. This is due to them using a
flat lense.

Firefly Firefly Spark Detection Systems

To consider when choosing suitable detector type:

  • Determine the minimum ignition temperature (MIT) and minimum ignition energy (MIE) of the processed material.
  • Choose the detection technology that will meet the MIT and MIE of that material.
  • Analyse possible detection disturbance sources and make sure that the chosen detector will not cause false triggering

Data Sheet - Firefly Spark Detection & Extinguishing

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Data Sheet - Firefly Eximio Premium Spark & Fire Protection Solutions

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Spark Detection System

Fire & Explosions 

Every year, people are injured and even killed as a result of industrial fires and dust explosions. Process industries worldwide lose millions per year in damages and production interruptions due to fire or dust explosions.

As opposed to taking action after the event of a fire or dust explosion, it is also possible to implement proactive measures to prevent a fire or explosion to occur in the first place. Intelligent process design and proper housekeeping are examples of vital measures. The installation of a Firefly spark detection system is another.

Firefly Firefly Spark Detection Systems

The Principle of Spark Detection

A spark detection system consists of a detector that identifies dangerous particles (ignition sources) in process flows. Once a particle is detected, it is within milliseconds automatically extinguished before it can create a fire or a dust explosion. The detection and extinguishing functionalities are controlled by a control unit. This proactive way of eliminating ignition sources is why Firefly spark detection systems are called ‘preventive systems’.

The installation of a Firefly spark detection system can save the industry from costly fires and dust explosions. By combining unique and patented technology with 40 years of experience in the process industry, Firefly offers premium safety solutions that minimise false alarms and keep the industries in production.

Risk Assessment

Scientific research shows at which temperatures and energy levels different combustible materials can ignite. To be considered adequate, a spark detection system should detect ignition sources at these levels.

Ignition Temperatures & Energies

Different materials have different minimum ignition temperatures (MIT) and different minimum ignition energies (MIE). Only when both the MIT and MIE levels are met or exceeded, ignition can take place. The expression ‘spark detection systems’ may be misleading; one would believe that sparks are the only cause of industrial fires and explosions. An impact spark can have a very high temperature; it can very well be 1000°C. But, an impact spark normally contains a very low amount of energy and is therefore not likely to cause an ignition. In many cases, a piece of overheated material from the process most often contains more energy. This overheated material is therefore much more likely to cause an ignition compared to an impact spark.

Firefly Firefly Spark Detection Systems

Hot Black Particles 

A hot particle will emit light, visible to the human eye when it has a temperature of about 700°C or more*. All particles below this temperature are perceived by the human eye as ‘black’ particles. As previously shown, most combustible materials can ignite at much lower temperatures than 700°C. Note that many fire problems in industrial processes are friction-related, i.e. initially creating hot black particles and not visible sparks.


All Firefly detectors are insensitive to daylight. Besides detecting down to the relevant temperature and energy levels, avoiding false alarms is a crucial aspect in the detection functionality of a spark detection system. Because each daylight detection results in the injection of unnecessary water into the process, secondary losses and often also costly production downtime are the unwanted results.

By detecting down to the relevant minimum ignition temperature and energy for different combustible material, and being insensitive to daylight, a Firefly spark detection system offers a premium detection functionality which is unrivalled on the market.

Spark Detection Particle Board

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Spark Detection System MDF

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Firefly Certificates & Approvals

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