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Authorised Gas and Safety Tester

Training
T H Azad Ali
Haldia Petrochemicals Limited
Haldia

Safety is built on integrity,


trust and leadership, created
and sustained by effective
communication.

AGST Training Synopsis


For all jobs requiring hot work permit and many jobs
with Cold work permit and also for production jobs
like lighting furnace etc., it is mandatory to test
(commonly referred to as GAS TEST) the
environment before allowing the task to be carried out
( e.g.) entry in an equipment or a confined space,
any hot job like welding concrete chipping etc.).

Explosion Triangle
Generally the requirements for an
explosion to take place are:
Flammable substance
Oxygen (air)
Source of ignition

What is GAS TESTING


The gas testing includes checking for
absence of flammable atmosphere
presence of required level of oxygen
absence of toxic gases ( e.g. Cl2,
Hydrocarbon, SOx etc.)

Authorised Gas and Safety Tester


A list of employees who have been trained in gas testing is
issued from time to time by the Team Leaders (NCU, AU, IOP,
HDPE, LLDPE, PP).

Only such authorised persons can carry out the gas


testing in their respective Safety districts.

In case no qualified/autorised a gas tester,


(AGST) is available in a department, Safety department
be requested to carry out the required gas tests.

may

Responsibilities
On the instruction of SIC, he carries out gas test ( to ensure the
absence of flammable atmosphere), oxygen test and/or toxicity and
enters into permit.
Regular checking at inerval is also AGSTs responsibility.
In the case of high risk jobs like confined space entry, hot work in
tank farm the tests may need endorsement from the central
laboratory.
In case of any abnormalities after start of job, AGST should stop
job

High Risk Jobs


High risk jobs
For work permit with open fire in certain high risk areas like
tank farm, or
hot work in confined space
High Hydrocarbon inventory areas
Radiography in G-shift hours etc
needs to be counter signed by Head (Mfg) or Head (Plant) after
the safety district head has signed.

Confined Space
The confined space can be defined as
*an enclosed or partially enclosed space,
*where entry is possible.
*which may be situated either below or above,
the ground or deck level.
*there is a likelihood of hazard of oxygen
deficiency/enrichment or
*accumulation of dust, mist, gases or vapours
which are irritants, hazardous to health
(toxic or corrosion or flammable)

What is a Confined Space?


A space that:
Is large enough and so configured that an
employee can enter bodily and perform
work;
Has limited or restricted means of entry or
exit;
Is not designed for continuous human
occupancy.

Examples of Confined Spaces:

Tanks
Manholes
Boilers
Furnaces
Sewers
Silos
Hoppers

Vaults
Pipes
Trenches
Tunnels
Ducts
Bins
Pits

Potential Hazards in Confined


Spaces
Oxygen Deficiency
<19.5% or >23.5%
oxygen concentration

Combustibles

Methane
Hydrogen
Acetylene
Propane
Gasoline fumes

Toxic Materials

Carbon Monoxide
Hydrogen Sulfide
Welding fumes
Corrosives

Electricity
Mechanical Hazards

Mixers
Crushers
Noise
Engulfment hazard

Oxygen Deficient Atmospheres


19.5 %
15 - 19%
12-14%
10-12%
8-10%
6-8%
4-6%

Minimum acceptable oxygen level.


Decreased ability to work strenuously.
Impair coordination. Early symptoms.
Respiration increases. Poor judgment.
Respiration increases. Lips blue.
Mental failure. Fainting. Nausea
Unconsciousness. Vomiting.
8 minutes - fatal, 6 minutes - 50% fatal
4-5 minutes - possible recovery.
Coma in 40 seconds. Death

Oxygen Enriched Atmospheres

Oxygen level above 21%.


Causes flammable and combustible

materials to burn violently when ignited.


Hair, clothing, materials, etc.
Oil soaked clothing and materials.
Never use pure oxygen to ventilate.
Never store or place compressed tanks in a
confined space.

Flammable Atmospheres
2 Critical Factors:

Oxygen content in the air.


Presence of a flammable gas, or vapor
Presence of dust (visibility of 5 or less)

Proper air/gas mixture can lead to explosion


Typical Ignition Sources:
Sparking or electric tool.
Welding / cutting operations.
Smoking

EXPLOSIVE RANGE
Scale that indicates the explosive
nature of gases or vapors
Relationship of the concentration of
the vapor present, its temperature &
pressure
Expressed as percent by volume in
air

EXPLOSIVE RANGE
If Explosive Range If Explosive Range
falls below the
is above the
Lower Explosive
maximum explosive
Limit (LEL), the
range or Upper
mixture of air and
Explosive Limit
vapor is too lean for
(UEL), the mixture
an explosion
of vapor and air is
too rich to be
explosive

LEAN
0%

RICH

LEL

UEL
40
30

20
10

50

60

70
80
90
100

% OF LOWER EXPLOSIVE LIMIT


(LEL)

100%

GAS CONCENTRATION
(MIXTURE IN AIR)

100%
TOO RICH FOR COMBUSTION
UEL
COMBUSTIBLE MIXTURE
LEL
TOO LEAN FOR COMBUSTION
0%
Upper and Lower Flammability Levels

Toxic Atmospheres

Product stored in a confined space:

Gases released when cleaning.


Materials absorbed into walls of confined space.
Decomposition of materials in the confined space.

Work performed in a confined space:


Welding, cutting, brazing, soldering.
Painting, scraping, sanding, degreasing.
Sealing, bonding, melting.

Areas adjacent to a confined space.

Exposure Limits
Air Contaminants
OSHA
PEL, STEL, Ceiling

NIOSH
TWA, STEL, Ceiling

ACGIH
TWA, STEL, Ceiling

Exposure Limits
Air Contaminants
TWA
takes into account variable exposure through a full
shift, 8 hour work day
STEL
limit of exposure during a short period, 15 minutes
CEILING
absolute maximum level of exposure not to be
exceeded

Hydrogen Sulfide

Decomposition of materials. Human waste.


Rotten egg odor at low concentrations.
Possibly no warning at high concentrations.
PPM

Effect

10 ppm
50 - 100
200 - 300
500 -700
>1000

Permissible Exposure Level


Mild Irritation - eyes, throat
Significant Irritation
Unconsciousness, Death
Unconsciousness, Death

Time
8 Hours
1 Hour
1 Hour
1/2 - 1 Hour
Minutes

Carbon Monoxide

Odorless, Colorless Gas.


Combustion By-Product.
Quickly collapse at high concentrations.
PPM

Effect

50
200
600
1000-2000
1000-2000
1000-2000
2000-2500

Permissible Exposure Level


Slight headache, discomfort
Headache, discomfort
Confusion, nausea, headache
Tendency to stagger
Slight heart palpitation
Unconsciousness

Time
8 Hours
3 Hours
1 Hour
2 Hours
1 1/2 Hours
30 Min.
30 Min.

Testing The Atmosphere

Verify presence of safe work atmosphere.


Test all areas of a confined space.
Top, Middle, Bottom

Methane is lighter than air.


Carbon Monoxide is the same as air.
Hydrogen Sulfide is heavier than air.
Oxygen Deficiency.

Always test the


air at various levels
to be sure that the
entire space is safe.
Good Air

Good air near


the opening
does NOT mean
there is good air
at the bottom!

Poor Air

Deadly Air

Atmosphere Testing Shall Be


Performed:
Prior to every entry when the space is
vacant;
After a 10 minute ventilation period (if
ventilation is necessary);
At least hourly for all confined spaces.
More frequently, if conditions or
suspicions warrant.

Equipments
Multigas Detector
MSA Multigas Detector
Explosimeters or LEL Detectors
MSA Manual Explosimeter
Draeger LEL Detector
DI Explosimeter
Oxygen meter
Draeger Oxygen Meter
DI Oxygen Meter
MSA oxygen meter.

Multi Gas Detector


MSA Multigas Detector is equipped with
LEL Sensor
Oxygen Sensor
H2S Sensor
CO Sensor

Explosimeter Operating Principle


Draeger Explosimeter
Principle of catalytic combustion on the surface of a heated element,
catalyst- coated thermistor (Pellistor). The catalytic combustion heats up
the element causing a change in resistance which is sensed by the
circuitry(wheatstone bridge) which has a compensator element and
converted into a meter reading. Environmental conditions, thermal
conductivity, affect both the element same way.
To switch on press button marked I
Measure at place with source as close possible
To switch off press both button marked O (i.e.
To know battery level press BAT
To light press

O & )

Equipment Details
Measuring range
Ex approval
Operating Temp
Humidity
Storage Temp
Power Supply
Operating time
Freq. Of charging
Sound level (Alarm)
Dust water protection
Dimension
Weight

: 0 to 100% LEL or 0 to 100% CH4 by Vol


: Ex s IIC T4
: -20 to 40 C
: 10 to 95%
: -40 to 60 C
: Rechargable NiCd Battery
: 10 Hrs ( with full charge and without
alarm)
: at least every 2 weeks
: 85dB(A) (at 30 cm distance)
: IP55
: 68mm X 156 mm X 37 mm
: 370 gms

Limitation Explosimeter
*Oxygen required for combustion is taken from the ambient
air.
*In case of Oxygen deficient atmosphere, LEL detector will not
show proper reading.
*In case conc. above LEL, sensitivity of detector reduces as air
required for combustion is displaced. But compensator
element measures the thermal conductivity of air and
displays the
reading according to the value.

MSA Explosimeter Operating Principle


MSA Explosimeter
*Wheat stone bridge
*Combustibles in the sample are burned on the filament which
raises it temperature an increases its resistance in proposition of
concentration of combustibles in the sample which is shown as
reading in meter
*MAS 2A(1) Explosimeter is not designed for testing mixtures of
hydrogen, acetylene or other combustables, in which the oxygen
content exceeds that of normal air.
*Instrument will not indicate the potential explosive hazard of
combustible gases and vapours when they are present in
concentration above their Upper Explosive Limits
* not designed to measure Flammable atmosphere in Steam or
inert atmosphere

Oxygen meter Draeger Details


Type

: Pac III gas detection instrument

Company
Details:
Pac
Approval

: Drager , German

: Personal air control


: Intrinsic safety IP64
EEx ia II c T4/T6
EEx ia I
WxHxD
: 66 x 110 x 32 mm
Weight
: 185 g
Measures: TLV / TWA
STEL/ TWA
Alarm level
: 85 db ( A), 30 cm
Advantage:
Only one unit for 18 intelligent Drager sensors ( 47 different toxic chemicals)

Type: Electrochemical sensors, Plug in type , Data being programmed


in EEPROMs
Vessel Entry: Gas intake can be effected by diffusion or external pump
operation. Intake is possible up to 45 m.
Note:
If i has come, it means that the instrument is to be calibrated. Please
send it to the Safety department. Calibration frequency: Every 3 to 6
months. Service life of electrochemical sensor : 18-36 months.

Operating Principle
The dragger O2 sensor is an electrochemical transducer for measuring the O 2
concentration in the atmosphere.
The ambient air to be monitored diffuses through a diffusion barrier into the
liquid electrolyte of the sensor.
The electrolyte contains a measuring electrode, a counter electrode and a
reference electrode.
An external potentiostat circuit provides for a constant bias between the
measuring electrode and the reference electrode. This voltage, the electrolyte
and the electrode materials are selected such that O 2 is electrochemically
converted at the measuring electrode.
During this process the current flows which is proportional to the O 2
concentration which is shown as reading in.

Permit System AGST


Responsibility
On the instruction of SIC, AGST carries out gas test, oxygen test and/or
toxicity. Enters into permit and signs.
In the case of high risk jobs like confined space entry, hot work in tank
farm the tests may need endorsement from the central laboratory.
Frequent testing should be done on field based on criticality of the job
and to be entered in second sheet of the permit.

General Precautions

Do not open the explosimeter case or attempt to adjust it


yourself in any way.

Do not leave the meter switched on when not in use as this will run the
batteries down

Always watch the meter pointer throughout the aspiration of sample.

If the concentration above UFL, the pointer move above


and
quickly back to 0 %

100 %

Do not use the explosimeter in steamy atmosphere, which can give


low readings and cause damage to the filament.

When Nitrogen purging of vessel is carried out as a step in gas


freezing, an Explosimeter cannot be used to test the atmosphere,
there is not enough oxygen present to burn the combustible
the filament. If such tests are required, a Drager or Kitagawa
equipment can be used

as
on
test

When using the sampling extension tube, remember that at least one
extra aspiration ( squeezing of rubber bulb) is required for
every metre of 6 mm (diameter ) tubing.

The explosimeters cannot be used to test atmospheres at higher than


that of the Explosimeter and containing high boiling point
components, as the vapours will condense in the instrument

Any Questions?????????!!!!!!!!!!!!

THE END