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Smoke detector with individual sensitivity calibration and monitoring

Image Number 4 for United States Patent #5543777.

A process and apparatus are provided for calibrating an individual smoke detector prior to installation so its sensitivity can be determined easily throughout its useful life. Representations of detector output signals are stored in the detector prior to installation, preferably at the time of manufacture, and used later for determining the sensitivity of the detector. The signals may represent alarm and clean-ambient conditions, or one of such conditions and the difference between them. During monitoring of the detector, after its installation, a new reading of a corresponding signal under clean-ambient conditions is sampled and the differences before and after installation are compared to determine the sensitivity of the detector when it is monitored. The detector includes electrical contacts from which a representation of detector sensitivity is available for monitoring with an external electrical probe, such as a common voltmeter.

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