1.1 Introduction

Smoke is primarily a visible suspension of carbon particles in air normally caused by burning of substances. Smoke detector senses smoke only and must be connected to a fire alarm system control panel. Smoke detectors are a detection device only – not an alarm. Smoke alarm detects smoke and sounds an alarm. Smoke detectors are used in large buildings and commercial areas where as smoke alarms are found in private residences. Early developments in design of smoke alarm began in 1922 with observations by Greinacher and later by Walter Jaeger in 1930.Smoke alarms use basically two types of sensors to detect smoke either through ionization or through photoelectric methods. Smoke alarms may contain either or both methods.

Ionization smoke alarms were introduced in U.S in the mid 1950’s. These early models used 240 volts of AC to operation. Smoke alarms using photoelectric technology were introduced in the early 1960’s. Early smoke detectors require high voltage, continuous research of smoke alarms lead to the development of battery powered easily portable smoke alarms. These made an increase in the use of smoke alarms and easily installable in housing premises too. The most recent developments have made smoke detectors even smarter. These smarter smoke detectors can be easily monitored and are accessible from any place.

Smoke alarms helped to save thousands of lives in the United States since their introduction and extensive use during the past two decades (Istre, 2000). There is good news to know that there is at least one smoke alarm in the 90% of homes in the United States. Universal fire-related damages result in more than 300,000 demises (Cooper, 2011). The U.S. Fire Administration reports stated that two thirds of the people who die annually in fires where smoke alarms are either not present or not working (Taylor, 2014).

In this project we design a microcontroller based smoke alarm which will continuously monitor and trigger an alarm for a significant amount of presence of smoke. This smoke alarm also contains an LCD monitor for visual alert as well as a WIFI module enabling to mobile monitoring.

1.2. Statement of purpose

Smoke alarms are the best innovation which help to reducing the rate of residential fire deaths (Frattaroli et al, 2016). Residential fires present threats to the public health and safety (Gielen,2014). The purpose of this study is to develop a circuit which is economical and reliable used to detect the smoke and activate an alarm.

1.3. Statement of problem

Safety is the primary concern in any residential or commercial premises. Smoke and fire are the key elements in safety considerations. This project study helps to design an Arduino microcontroller smoke alarm system. This system continuously monitors and calibrates the amount of the different particles present in the smoke for different types of commercial and residential buildings. This system can also be continuously monitored regarding the smoke levels remotely.

1.4. Research Objectives

The primary objective of this project is to design a microcontroller based smoke alarm to detect the presence of smoke and to activate an alarm.

· Analysis and calibration of Arduino microcontroller.

· Analysis and calibration of MQ-2 smoke sensor.

· Analysis and installation of ESP8266 WIFI module.

· Installation of LCD display and LED to develop visual warnings indicating the presence of smoke.

· Installation of buzzer to display audio warnings to indicate the presence of smoke.

1.5. Experimental Approach

This project uses an Arduino micro-controller, MQ-2 smoke sensor to detect the presence of smoke. This project also uses a I2C LCD display and an ESP8266 WIFI module to display and notify the presence of smoke. The MQ-2 sensor is very accurate and can detect the presence of smoke including different types of gas concentrations present. The MQ-2 library has in built value codes which makes it precise in the detection of different smoke and gas concentrations.

1.6. Significance of Study

Working smoke alarms reduce the risk of death in the event of housefire by 50%. Having a working smoke alarm with a long-lasting lithium battery on every level of the home is the recommended best practice according to the centers for disease control and prevention (Gielen,2014). The design of smoke alarm system in this project is more user friendly and reliable because of the high sensitivity of smoke sensor. This system is very economical which is easily affordable for anyone.

1.7 Limitations

· The sensor is of smoke type and it does not indicate the presence of fire.

· Smoke alarm system should be connected to a continuous unlimited power supply.

· Considering the location, position of the system and the area of the hall the reaction of the smoke alarm system may be altered.

· Due to the high sensitivity and continuous usage of the system, the sensor may lead to damage because of the heat developed.

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