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Case Studies

NFPA 3D Warehouse: Spray Patterns and Sprinkler Installation Training


The challenge:

With a mission of trying to “reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating consensus on codes and standards, research, training, and education” the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) was searching for safe and innovative methods to help further their classroom training by including scenarios and settings that would normally be too dangerous to attempt.

With the utilization of videos and highly-detailed images, the NFPA would be able to help students witness potentially dangerous and illegal scenarios within the safety of the classroom. With the utilization of videos and highly-detailed images the NFPA would be able to help learners witness potentially dangerous and illegal scenarios within the safety of the classroom. Learners would also be able to utilize additional visuals to understand proper warehouse regulations and layouts, practice creating schematics, and visualize correct and incorrect installation to ensure all safety precautions are met.

The most challenging part of the project would be working with NFPA standards to help ensure the representations they were looking for were not only visually appealing, highly accurate to match the AutoCAD blueprints of every pipe, wall, and sprinkler head. Since there are currently no visual references for learners to examine it would also be important to display scenarios that were potentially dangerous and life threatening.

The Solution:

Working closely together with NFPA’s engineering team Designing Digitally, Inc. was able to create a photorealistic 3D model of a warehouse environment that matched all of the regulation standards for layouts and measurements. Utilizing this in-depth environment Designing Digitally, Inc. was able to create a 3D virtual location that would help student visualize how a warehouse should look without having to leave the classroom.

Taking it a step further, Designing Digitally, Inc. was also able to use the 3D interpretation of a warehouse to create detailed 3D representations of sprinkler heads and sprinkler animations that could show both correct and incorrect spray installation and spray patterns without endangering the students or instructors. These animations and images would help students to recognize whether a sprinkler head has been properly installed in the appropriate pipe fitting, and what the spray pattern should look like upon release.

Designing Digitally, Inc. chose to work with 3D modeling and animation programs to help NFPA find a solution to their classroom lessons as these programs would allow for accurate duplications and creation of any scene and scenario, whether it was realistic or not, without having to rely on a real environment that could potentially pose a risk. Such programs not only help to ensure an accurate layout, but also make it easier to modify in case there are any updates to procedures and regulations in the future.

The Results:

NFPA needed a way a show scenarios, environments, and equipment in their classrooms without endangering the lives of their students or instructors. Now armed with videos simulating spray patterns, and images displaying incorrect installation, the NFPA now has the ability to show real world examples of a warehouse, and demonstrate and setup multiple scenarios without additional cost or threat to human life.

NFPA - 3D Warehouse above view
NFPA - 3D Warehouse floor view
NFPA - 3D Warehouse boxes
NFPA - 3D Warehouse outside
NFPA - 3D Warehouse Rows
NFPA - 3D Warehouse sprinklers
NFPA - 3D Warehouse rows
NFPA - 3D Warehouse stacks
NFPA - 3D Warehouse floor plan