19-12-2013
Early Detection of Hazardous Gases through Gas Monitoring Equipment to Save Lives

 Good quality air and safe environment is the reason for the manufacture of gas detection and hazardous gas monitoring equipment. Some industries in particular release hazardous gas to the immediate environment which can be both toxic and explosive. Due to the growing concerns on these environmental hazards, strict monitoring of three main gas types is required. Gas monitoring equipment can detect combustible, flammable and toxic gases. The detection equipment includes audible or visible signals that can provide warning when dangerous levels of gas are detected. Originally, the gas monitoring equipment was capable of detecting a single kind of gas but due to advancements in technology, modern units can detect several toxic and combustible gases at one time.

The three main types of gas hazards

  • Flammable – where there is risk of fire or explosion; for example, methane, propane and butane. Combustion is a chemical reaction when oxygen is combined rapidly with another substance that results into release of energy. The energy released is usually in heat form like flames. The igniting substance which is normally a hydrocarbon compound can either be solid, liquid, vapor or gas. An increase in pressure, temperature or oxygen content will generally increase the flammability range. In an industrial plant, no gases should be leaking into the environment and through the gas monitoring equipment, early detection is ensured.

 

  • Toxic gas – where there is a risk of poisoning; for example, carbon monoxide, hydrogen, carbon dioxide and chlorine. For a home that uses a boiler for heat and hot water, a carbon monoxide audible detector is an indispensable gas monitoring equipment. Carbon monoxide is a deadly gas that is emitted by a faulty boiler. More people die from exposure to toxic gases than explosions or fire. The importance of gas monitoring equipment for the early detection of gases is the effect on people of exposure even to very low concentrations. It is not only the negative impact to workers in an industrial facility but the possible contamination of the products.

 

  • Asphyxiation – where there is a risk of suffocation; for example, oxygen deficiency when it is displaced by another gas. Oxygen is a gas that allows people to live. Oxygen is present in the air breathed and when the oxygen levels dip below the normal levels, it is considered unsafe for humans. Oxygen depletion can be caused by displacement, combustion, oxidation and chemical reaction. Areas that require the gas monitoring equipment for early detection of gases are industrial processes that use toxic and flammable gases.

 

Typical areas that require gas monitoring equipment

  • Oil and gas industry for offshore exploration and production of oil and gas which includes transportation, storage and refining with serious explosive risks.
  • Semi conductor manufacturing that involves the use of high toxic substances and flammable gas
  • Chemical plants with a wide range of both flammable and toxic gases for their manufacturing processes
  • Waste water treatment facilities where sewage releases methane and hydrogen sulfide
  • Boiler rooms that use gas for fuel. Carbon monoxide emissions are given off by a boiler that lacks regular inspection and servicing. 

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