What is FM Approval

We are delighted to announce the FM Approval’s for our latest range of aspirating detectors. From gaining this approval, we foresee a continued sales growth of our multi-award-winning aspirating system solutions worldwide. But what is FM Approval, and what benefits does it carry? This short article will answer just that and expand on each of our aspirating detectors that have achieved the FM Approval.


What is FM Approval for Aspirating Detectors?

Factory Mutual (FM) is an international leader in third-party testing and certification for loss prevention products and are recognised worldwide within the insurance industry. The FM Approval is a set of standards/processes put in place to test a product. The in-depth testing assesses a product meets the highest safety and property loss prevention standards.

With fire detection, the FM Approval incorporates detector testing as part of the approval process. The approval of ‘detection systems’ tests includes aspirating detectors installed to industry fire codes and standards. The aspirating detector is then required to respond as expected to the test system parameters. Only when the detector meets the strict criteria set will it then archive the FM Approval certification.


What Is The Difference Between FM Approval and UL Approval?

UL Approval is a product approval based on standards focussing on the individual product and what it claims to do. FM approval is similar, but this approval sees the product tested as part of a system instead of the particular product. By doing this, it highlights any issues the product might have when used in situ. By carrying out the FM Approval tests, it ensures the product manufacturer’s claims are factual. As the FM process provides much more in-depth product testing, fewer products make it to market carrying the prestigious FM Approval.


What Benefits Does FM Approval Have?

FM Global is the largest insurance company that provides or underwrites insurance within the industrial sector. If you want to get reasonable insurance rates, insurance with FM Global or a company underwritten by FM Global, then products at the facility must be FM Approved.

Most major companies will try to make sure their systems meet FM standards. If they are not using FM Global as an insurance company or underwriter, installing an FM Approved product enables the system to be insured by or underwritten by FM Global in the future.


Which of The Protec Aspirating Detectors Have FM Approval?

We have a wide range of aspirating detectors that offer protection to many building spaces and environments. Our latest range aspirating detectors have recently received full FM Approval, adding to the previous generation aspirating detector products which have been FM Approved for many years.


ProPoint Plus

The ProPoint Plus range of aspirating smoke detectors use ‘optical’ Scatter Chamber Detectors (SCD’s). The SCD smoke sensor identifies small amounts of visible smoke particles created as materials start to over-heat. The prominent feature of ProPoint Plus detectors is that up to 4 detection areas may be protected from a single aspirating unit. A simple, user-friendly multi-lingual OLED display guides both engineers and end-users through the detector features and functions.

ProPoint Plus detector applications include small computer rooms, control rooms, high ceiling areas, clean warehouses, elevator shafts, atria, in-accessible voids – and many others. ProPoint Plus aspirating smoke detectors are fully compliant with EN 54 Part 20 for Europe, CCC Approval for China, and now FM Approval which is generally recognised worldwide.


Cirrus CCD

Cloud chamber-based detection technology provides the very highest sensitivity aspirating detection. This technology detects invisible sub-micron particles created during the earliest stages of a fire when an object/material begins to over-heat.

The unique ‘Cloud Chamber’ technology enables Cirrus CCD detectors to be one of the most reactive and versatile fire detection technologies on the market. Additionally, the Cloud Chamber technology ensures that Cirrus CCD detectors reduce the potential for ‘false alarms’ from dust, steam, condensation, humidity, high airflows, and temperature changes, most of which create countless problems for other aspirating detection systems.

The Cirrus CCD is a feature-rich fire detector offering various innovative elements. These include an IP interface, camera connectivity for up to six IP cameras, multiple programable fire and pre-alarm warnings, plus many more are all controlled via a user-friendly intuitive 7-inch full-colour touch screen. Alternatively, a simple Pre-alarm, Fire, Fault, and Power LED indicator only version is offered where full function displays may not be necessary.

Due to this highly responsive detection method, alongside the reduced risk of false alarms, the Cirrus CCD is suitable for many diverse applications, including clean rooms and data centres, and industrial applications (where dust and humidity are present), high airflow applications, high bay warehouse and automated warehousing facilities, distribution centres, cold storage facilities – and many others.

Cirrus CCD aspirating fire detectors are fully compliant with FM Approval and CCC Approval for China.



The multi-award-winning Cirrus HYBRID aspirating detector offers technologies from both our ProPoint Plus and Cirrus CCD detectors. The unit can detect the two different phenomena associated with fire (fire particles and smoke particles). The Cirrus HYBRID detector includes as the primary sensor a ‘Cloud Chamber’ fire detector (seen in the Cirrus CCD), supplemented by high sensitivity ‘Optical’ detectors (found in the ProPoint Plus). Combining the two technologies using our complex algorithms creates a highly versatile detector offering unrivalled sensitivity while maintaining minimal risks of false alarms.

The Cirrus HYBRID duplicates many high-tech features from the Cirrus CCD product, such as an IP interface, camera connectivity for connection for up to six IP cameras, multiple programable fire and pre-alarm warnings, pipe plan images, transport time testing, data storage and many more, all controlled via a user-friendly intuitive 7-inch full-colour touch screen. Again, a simple Pre-alarm, Fire, Fault, and Power LED indicator only version is offered where full function displays may not be necessary.

Uniquely, Cirrus HYBRID is the only aspirating detector to offer signals from two separate aspirating detector sensors (cloud chamber and optics) to verify true alarm conditions for connections to many control systems, including suppression/extinguishing control panels. For further information on this, please see the Protec Aspirating Detector Data Centre Design Philosophy document.

The versatile nature of the combined fire and smoke detection technologies makes the Cirrus HYBRID the ideal solution for a wide range of environments such as cleanrooms, data centres, automated warehousing facilities, archive storage, museums, libraries and theatres – and so many others.

Cirrus HYBRID aspirating fire and smoke detectors are fully compliant with EN54 Part 20 for Europe, CCC Approval for China and now FM Approval, which is generally recognised worldwide.


Further Information

For more information on our industry-leading aspirating detection systems, head over to our aspirating fire detection Products page, where you will find all the latest technical datasheets, products specifications and helpful videos.