Combustible Dust Testing

Laboratory testing to quantify dust explosion and reactivity hazards

Safety Data Sheets

Develop critical safety data for inclusion in SDS documents

Gas and Vapor

Laboratory testing to quantify explosion hazards for vapor and gas mixtures

Classification of hazardous materials subject to shipping and storage regulations
Testing and consulting on the explosion risks associated with devices and processes which use or produce hydrogen
Safety Data Sheets

Develop critical safety data for inclusion in SDS documents

Thermal Stability

Safe storage or processing requires an understanding of the possible hazards associated with sensitivity to variations in temperature

Adiabatic Calorimetry
Data demonstrate the consequences of process upsets, such as failed equipment or improper procedures, and guide mitigation strategies including Emergency Relief System (ERS) design
Reaction Calorimetry
Data yield heat and gas removal requirements to control the desired process chemistry
Battery Safety

Testing to support safe design of batteries and electrical power backup facilities particularly to satisfy UL9540a ed.4

Safety Data Sheets

Develop critical safety data for inclusion in SDS documents

Cable Testing
Evaluate electrical cables to demonstrate reliability and identify defects or degradation
Equipment Qualification (EQ)
Testing and analysis to ensure that critical equipment will operate under adverse environmental conditions
Water Hammer
Analysis and testing to identify and prevent unwanted hydraulic pressure transients in process piping
Acoustic Vibration
Identify and eliminate potential sources of unwanted vibration in piping and structural systems
Gas & Air Intrusion
Analysis and testing to identify and prevent intrusion of gas or air in piping systems
ISO/IEC 17025:2017

Fauske & Associates fulfills the requirements of ISO/IEC 17025:2017 in the field of Testing

ISO 9001:2015
Fauske & Associates fulfills the requirements of ISO 9001:2015
Dust Hazards Analysis
Evaluate your process to identify combustible dust hazards and perform dust explosion testing
On-Site Risk Management
On-site safety studies can help identify explosibility and chemical reaction hazards so that appropriate testing, simulations, or calculations are identified to support safe scale up
DIERS Methodology
Design emergency pressure relief systems to mitigate the consequences of unwanted chemical reactivity and account for two-phase flow using the right tools and methods
Deflagrations (Dust/Vapor/Gas)

Properly size pressure relief vents to protect your processes from dust, vapor, and gas explosions

Effluent Handling

Pressure relief sizing is just the first step and it is critical to safely handle the effluent discharge from an overpressure event

FATE™ & Facility Modeling

FATE (Facility Flow, Aerosol, Thermal, and Explosion) is a flexible, fast-running code developed and maintained by Fauske and Associates under an ASME NQA-1 compliant QA program.

Mechanical, Piping, and Electrical
Engineering and testing to support safe plant operations and develop solutions to problems in heat transfer, fluid, flow, and electric power systems
Hydrogen Safety
Testing and consulting on the explosion risks associated with devices and processes which use or produce hydrogen
Thermal Hydraulics
Testing and analysis to ensure that critical equipment will operate under adverse environmental conditions
Nuclear Safety
Our Nuclear Services Group is recognized for comprehensive evaluations to help commercial nuclear power plants operate efficiently and stay compliant
Radioactive Waste
Safety analysis to underpin decomissioning process at facilities which have produced or used radioactive nuclear materials
Adiabatic Safety Calorimeters (ARSST and VSP2)

Low thermal inertial adiabatic calorimeters specially designed to provide directly scalable data that are critical to safe process design

Other Lab Equipment and Parts for the DSC/ARC/ARSST/VSP2 Calorimeters

Products and equipment for the process safety or process development laboratory


Software for emergency relief system design to ensure safe processing of reactive chemicals, including consideration of two-phase flow and runaway chemical reactions


Facility modeling software mechanistically tracks transport of heat, gasses, vapors, and aerosols for safety analysis of multi-room facilities


Our highly experienced team keeps you up-to-date on the latest process safety developments.

Process Safety Newsletter

Stay informed with our quarterly Process Safety Newsletters sharing topical articles and practical advice.


With over 40 years of industry expertise, we have a wealth of process safety knowledge to share.

Recent Posts

Safety in a Green Hydrogen Economy

Posted by Fauske & Associates on 03.11.21


For decades the thought of using hydrogen as a sustainable and cost-effective fuel source has been a hair’s breadth out of reach. But recently, Air Products & Chemicals, a US industrial gas company has revealed that it has begun building a “green” hydrogen plant in Saudi Arabia to supply power to a futuristic city Neom that only the retro cartoon family “Jetsons” would recognize as home. 

But what is green hydrogen and why is the concept growing in popularity?

Green hydrogen is generated by passing electricity through a hydrogen-bearing compound, most commonly water. When exposed to the electric current, the bonds that hold the water molecule together are broken, creating two molecules of hydrogen (H2) and one molecule of oxygen (O2) for each two molecules of water (H2O). This process is known as electrolysis. What makes this process “green” is that the required electricity can be generated from renewables or other zero-carbon resources such as wind, solar, or nuclear energy, and hydrogen combustion does not create any carbon decomposition products like CO2. Additionally, hydrogen is an energy source that can be stored for future use.

The environmental impact of using green hydrogen is anticipated to be tremendously positive, and green hydrogen can be made affordable by scaling up the electrolysis process described above. The Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) has identified nuclear energy as potentially the cheapest carbon-free source for hydrogen fuel if used on a large scale.

However, as a process's scale increases, so too do the safety risks. Hydrogen is extremely flammable and under certain conditions could detonate. Fauske and Associates (FAI) are proven experts in eliminating or mitigating process scale-up and energy storage risks, especially when hydrogen is present. FAI has decades of related engineering analysis and testing experience in the chemical and nuclear industries.

Below is a diagram that defines the flammable concentrations of hydrogen in air, including data taken in the FAI lab. The concentration that produces the greatest overpressure from deflagration in air is identified.


Figure 1 Flammability diagram for hydrogen in air at 1 atm, data taken in the FAI lab

The flammability limits (LFL and UFL) testing was performed using ASTM E918, Standard Practice for Determining Limits of Flammability of Chemicals at Elevated Temperature and Pressure. The testing to determine the lowest flammable oxygen concentration (LOC) to propagate an ignition was done using ASTM E2079, Standard Test Methods for Limiting Oxygen (Oxidant) Concentration in Gases and Vapors. All testing was conducted in air at ambient conditions.

From a safety perspective, preventing a hydrogen ignition is optimal. The ideal option would be to operate outside the flammable region. The flammable region is defined by the lower flammable limit, the upper flammable limit, and the lowest oxygen concentration along the air line. The data points from these tests are then used to expand the flammable region to encompass oxygen-rich environments, which may occur when producing green hydrogen. The flammable region is depicted within the inner red triangle in the graph above.

As seen in Figure 1, hydrogen’s flammable region engulfs much of the diagram and leaves little practical room to operate outside of this region. It is often not feasible or economical to operate outside the flammable region. It is very likely at some point during processing, storage, or transportation that the hydrogen concentration is going to enter the flammable region. Additionally, a leak or malfunction in the system could inadvertently push the hydrogen concentration into the flammable region.

If these risks cannot be eliminated by a change to the process design, then those risks should be mitigated through appropriate relief systems and vent sizing. For mitigation, one must first determine the maximum pressure (PMAX), the deflagration index (Kg), and the burning velocity of the worst-case combustion event. The illustration below shows FAI results for PMAX as a function of hydrogen concentration.


Figure 2 Maximum pressure as a function of hydrogen concentration

The explosion severity testing and calculations were performed using EN 15697, Determination of maximum explosion pressure and the maximum rate of pressure rise of gases and vapors. The explosions were measured at a sampling rate of 10,000 data points per second.

The green hydrogen plant that is scheduled to be built in Saudi Arabia is estimated to be powered by 4 gigawatts of electric power generated from renewable wind and solar resources. While renewable energy sources have the capability to power green hydrogen production facilities, they are known to have periods of decreased output such as when the sun is not shining, and the wind is not blowing. A robust infrastructure for coping with variable capacity generating resources is emerging around the world with significant progress for industrial-scale energy storage in batteries. In the US, those battery energy storage systems (BESS) must be subject to a series of thermal and flammability tests outlined in an Underwriters Laboratories’ standard called UL9540A Edition 4. FAI has the capability to perform a wide range of the tests listed in that standard. FAI offers a wide range of testing services, from custom “bespoke” testing to standardized flammability tests which are ISO 17025 accredited. Similar flammability diagrams can of course be readily developed to address mixtures of hydrogen and methane which may be of interest to those tasked with hydrogen transport through existing natural gas pipelines (for which FAI also has experience in probabilistic risk assessment).

As our Earth turns towards cleaner and more efficient methods of energy generation to provide for an ever-increasing demand, energy producers turn towards Fauske and Associates to ensure the safety of those working to change the world. Please contact us for assistance in making the world a safer place.

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