Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Fire Bomb

A fire extinguisher on steriods
  (+5, -4)
(+5, -4)
  [vote for,

A big CO2 fire extiguisher, five times bigger than an ordinary one. When a house catches on fire, the firefighters huck it through a first floor window and its set off remotely. This would fill the entire house with CO2 thus putting out a fire by displacing all the oxygen, just like the smaller one do. This would be more efficient than water and hoses for several reasons:

1) Water can't get to fire behind walls, while the CO2 will go everywhere in the house, since its a gas.

2) It can put out grease and gas fire that water only spreads around.

3) Wouldn't require huge quantities of water, so fire could be put out during droughts and water shortages.

4) The entire house wouldn't be soaked afterward. Burnt, but not wet too, so its slightly better.

5) Who wouldn't want to set off a huge bomb fill with compressed CO2?

MikeOxbig, Dec 23 2005

Upside-down cooling. Upside_20Down_20Cooling
Another supercold fire fighting idea. [bungston, Dec 23 2005]

Carbon Dioxide isn't poisonous. http://www.smithson...3/killer_lakes.html
I'm sure these people will be really pleased to be instructed on the difference. [moomintroll, Dec 23 2005]

FM-200 http://www.e1.great...p/safe_reliable.jsp
Breathable fire extinguishing gas. [Worldgineer, Dec 29 2005]


       Do you think that the whole structure might need containment in order for the CO2 to accumulate enough to suffocate a fire completely?   

       Is CO2 heavier than air?
bristolz, Dec 23 2005

       Carbon dioxide is indeed heavier than air. This would kill anyone in the house and for quite a long way around it. The gas is actually poisonous, not just unable to support respiration, because of the reflexes it sets off, above about 7%. The concentration in the air inside the house would have to be very high to extinguish the fire, and it wouldn't solve the problem of the previously burning material still being hot enough to burn once the oxygen was back. Also, it would cause a lot of structural damage and probably suffocate people around the house for quite a distance. Also, it would probably deafen bystanders.
On the other hand, if it were done after the building was evacuated, it would probably extinguish it temporarily, so in an isolated building it could work. Nitrogen might be a better bet.
nineteenthly, Dec 23 2005

       But not hydrogen, right?
bristolz, Dec 23 2005

       Helium could work, too. Plus, all the fire-fighters would be talking funny.   

       Other gases are sometimes used in closed spaces - transformer rooms - which work by taking the heat away from the flame. They have the advantage of only requiring a few percent mix in the air, and don't asphyxiate.
Ling, Dec 23 2005

       Could you have foam that creeps along teh floor/expands, then within a couple of hours dries to a powder than can be hoovered up? Just a thought.
rubyminky, Dec 23 2005

       its a great idea. i think the foam would b the best choice but seeing as it wouldent build up alot of pressure all the doors in the house would have to be open for the foam to travel rooms. lots of potential if the figure out how do make this
ShadowFire666, Dec 23 2005

       Rather than blowing up the house with a bomb, why not shoot chunks of dry ice through the windows?
ldischler, Dec 23 2005

       Alright [nineteenthly], so if CO2 is heavier than air the bomb would have to be thrown upstairs, maybe slingshot up, or used in smaller canisters like teargas grenades, or even pumped in through a hose.   

       Also, I don't think you have to worry about CO2 being poisonous as its not actually poisonous. Its just that if you breath in a concentrated amount it displaces too much oxygen and thats why you can suffacate, it happens with all gasses. But since you already can't breath much in a burning building, since its filled with smoke, plus theres the fact that you would be severely injured when hit with a water jet from a fire fighter's hose, which is why the firefighters try to get out all the residents before attemting to put out the fire.   

       Next, CO2 is very effective at putting out fires, which is why they use it in many fire extinguishers.   

       By-standers wouldn't be injured by the CO2 cloud because there wouldn't be any by-standers, as all people in the surrounded area would be evacuated, like they always are during a fire. Firefighters would be wearing oxygen masks already because of the smoke, so they're in no danger either.   

       Finally, I'm not sure how it would cause any more structural damage than high pressure water jets, firefighters' axes, and the fire itself. But as for the loudness of the bomb, I would have to suspect that it would be no louder than the water from the hoses hitting the house hard, and that already is freaking loud, so the bomb wouldn't be that bad.   

       Anyway thanks for the constructive critism and the good argument.
MikeOxbig, Dec 23 2005

       Alrite [moomintroll], I stand corrected.
MikeOxbig, Dec 29 2005

       Firefighting CO2 flooding systems are widely baked in many industrial sites, especially power stations. Seeing as this idea relates to a CO2 grenade, rather than a permanently installed rack of bottles, no mfd.   

       And + from me.
Texticle, Dec 29 2005

       There are breathable fire extinguishing gases available on the market, and often used in spaces where water is a very expensive option (data centers, art storage, etc.). The reason it isn't used everywhere is because it's expensive. If the price ever drops the Fire Bomb would be a good idea, though I think you'll see sprinkler systems replaced with this first.
Worldgineer, Dec 29 2005

       Halon 200 series (there are lots of kinds) is your friend. Takes less space than CO2, removes heat, and sounds like a bomb going off in a windstorm when it is let loose. The good thing is that you are still breathing afterwards (although somewhat colder).   

       CO2 in compressed, liquid, or solid form is also very corrosive to most materials used for pressure containments. It will eat right through steel, although slowly. Thus, CO2 bottles (or bombs) will need regular inspections.
humanbean, Dec 30 2005

       It doesn't necesarily have to use CO2, I only picked it because it's used in fire extinguishers already, so logically, I figured that it would be good for putting out fires. But the focus of the idea is the bomb settup, not which gasses put out fires best. Science has already figured that one out for us.
MikeOxbig, Dec 30 2005


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