The Philip J. DiNenno Prize awarded for the development and commercialization of Very Early Smoke Detection Apparatus

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June 4, 2017 – The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) announced that Very Early Smoke Detection Apparatus (VESDA) is the technical achievement to receive this year’s Philip J. DiNenno Prize. The award and $50,000 in prize money were presented today at NFPA’s Conference & Expo in Boston to David Packham, John Petersen, and Martin Cole. VESDA technology and its pre-eminent role in the global introduction of aspirated smoke detection or ASD has led to a major impact on public safety. Ample commendation is also given to deceased co-inventor and passionate advocate Len Gibson.

The prestigious DiNenno Prize recognizes groundbreaking innovations that have had a significant impact in the building, fire and electrical safety fields. The prize is named for the late Philip J. DiNenno, the greatly respected former CEO of Hughes Associates, in recognition of his extraordinary contributions to fire safety.

The VESDA innovation transformed the fire detection and alarm industry and inspired a whole new aspirated smoke detection area of technology. The installation of VESDA in telecommunication facilities, telephone exchanges, data centers, high technology manufacturing, industrial control rooms and other related facilities has had a significant impact on asset protection and business continuity. In addition, the very early smoke detection by VESDA provides life safety protection for employees working in these buildings.

VESDA technology allows for smoke detection over a very large, dynamic range, which means it can be used for both high and standard sensitivity alarm points typically seen in spot smoke detectors. VESDA has proven to be an adaptable technology that is ideal for effective detection in unique applications. For instance, VESDA has been successfully tested and used in road tunnels and zoo enclosures.

The DiNenno Prize was established in 2014 following DiNenno’s passing in 2013. A prize committee considers nominations submitted from around the world. More information can be found at www.nfpa.org/dinenno. 

About the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
Founded in 1896, NFPA is a global, nonprofit organization devoted to eliminating death, injury, property and economic loss due to fire, electrical and related hazards. The association delivers information and knowledge through more than 300 consensus codes and standards, research, training, education, outreach and advocacy; and by partnering with others who share an interest in furthering the NFPA mission. For more information visit www.nfpa.org. All NFPA codes and standards can be viewed online for free at www.nfpa.org/freeaccess.

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Contact: Susan McKelvey, Public Affairs Office: +1 617 984-7275