19 Jul 2022

Member profile: INCOS Engineering delivers the goods for fire safety

INCOS Engineering has made a big impression in the Australian market for smart fire safety solutions since the company’s inception in 2018.

Independent and Australian owned, INCOS Engineering offers a variety of safety and engineering services to several sectors, including the oil and gas industry, and is particularly well regarded with operators and EPCs for its expertise in the application of fire protection systems for offshore and onshore assets.

“The name INCOS Engineering comes from what we represent, which is innovative consultancy, safety engineering,” says INCOS Engineering Business Development Manager and founding partner Mark Drage. “That’s really our mission – to be the trusted partner for technical fire safety engineering. It’s not just a job for us; we make sure we are working together with the operator to engineer and enable change or get the most suitable equipment from Australia or across the world”.

There are four main branches of INCOS Engineering, encompassing Engineering Consultancy; Projects & Manufacturing; Components & Products; and Service & Maintenance.

“We’re proud of our quality focused team here at INCOS Engineering and clients recognise the benefit of that approach to work, ” Mark says. “In fact, our Lead Technician/HSSEQ Manager Bruce Giles has received an award from INPEX for the quality of his work offshore and this is quite inspiring for us.”

Recently, INCOS Engineering has been expanding on its service offering with several innovations that are helping make operations easier and safer for customers, including a new method for deluge testing. Deluge wet testing, while an essential safety operation, can be time-consuming, costly, and very corrosive if sea water is used.

In response to these concerns, INCOS Engineering has introduced a dry deluge system that uses pressurised vapour (“smoke”) instead of sea water, a switch that has helped make the process more efficient, safe, and cost effective. This system, developed by SIRON and distributed exclusively in Australia and New Zealand by INCOS, has been deployed successfully internationally and is now delivering results here as well.

“The ‘smoke’ used in dry deluge testing is a non-carbon-based vapour,” Mark explains. “We did our first dry deluge offshore test pilot here in Australia last year with an Australian major and it is continuing to deliver great results. It reduces the corrosion issues inherent to wet testing and without interruption to production.”

Pictured: Dry deluge testing system pig tail nozzles during a test.

The INCOS Engineering team’s extensive knowledge of fire protection systems and associated equipment in combination with a global network of OEM suppliers ensures the company can source the required component to meet the oil & gas industry’s needs today and into the future. One such important gain for customers is the agreement to be the Australia’s premium distributor of Fire Eater INERGEN equipment.

Two firsts for Australia are 1) Having stock on hand locally for a managed cylinder exchange program from Perth to shorten lead times for clients and 2) Incos are building an INERGEN test room in Perth for clients to see the system work.

INCOS Engineering is also innovating in the OEM space with its own integrated firefighting equipment, from deluge skids and flow/pressure control assemblies, to foam systems, gas systems and water mist.

“One particularly large operation we’re engaged in now is assisting clients with the transition from an older form of firefighting foam – AFFF – to a more efficient, non-fluorinated alternative called Fluorine Free (F3). “The AFFF to F3 mapping helps operators transition from old products to the new to make sure their equipment works with something it was never designed to use,” Mark explains.

Pictured: A set of flow control oscillating monitors outside INCOS Engineering’s manufacturing facility in Canning Vale.

INCOS Engineering has shown no signs of slowing in the post-COVID era (the company has grown from six to 15 staff in the past four years) and is even eyeing a potential expansion to Darwin.

During lockdown, it expanded its remote operational capacity, providing Expertise at a Distance (EAAD), providing additional video conferencing and teleconferencing platforms for engineering and technical support services, training, and monitoring of assets, ensuring the company can deliver support whenever the need arises.

The move is expected to slash the company’s offshore flights in half by 2025. “We’re pushing for half the work we need to do offshore to be done onshore by then. We think this EAAD philosophy, working with operators as a Fire Systems Help Desk will assist to future-proof our offering,” Mark says.

This EAAD push is also expanding to other avenues, with INCOS Engineering currently exploring the benefits of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) solutions for maintenance, support, and training services.

“The continued push for innovation ensuring INCOS Engineering can continue to deliver the best possible safety outcomes for oil and gas providers,” Mark concludes.

For more information, head to incos-e.com.