DiNenno Prize awarded for the development and commercialization of Very Early Smoke Detection Apparatus

Blog Post created by mikehazell Employee on Jun 4, 2017

The recipients of the Philip J. DiNenno Prize pose with Linda DiNenno and NFPA Chair Randy Tucker.


Very Early Smoke Detection Apparatus (VESDA) is the technical achievement to receive this year’s Philip J. DiNenno Prize during the NFPA Conference & Expo in Boston. The award was presented to David Packham, John Petersen, and Martin Cole, with special commendation given to deceased co-inventor and advocate Len Gibson.


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.


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.


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.