Conventional Sprinkler Systems are designed primarily to control the fire and prevent building structural collapse, and pre-wet the surrounding combustibles to prevent fire spread. This is achieved using copious quantities of water.
Water Mist suppression systems are specifically designed to either suppress or extinguish a fire. Water is an outstanding fire suppression agent due to its high heat capacity and latent heat of vaporisation. Critical to water mist efficacy is the nozzle which is specially designed to produce a specific range of droplet sizes and velocities.
The larger droplets have sufficient energy and momentum to penetrate the fire plume and cool the fuel. The smaller droplets increase the overall enthalpy of the enclosure as well as being converted to steam at the flame front and entrained into the plume thereby displacing oxygen. Extinguishment is achieved by a combination of these mechanisms.