Combustible Dust Testing

Laboratory testing to quantify dust explosion & reactivity hazards

Flammable Gas & Vapor Testing

Laboratory testing to quantify explosion hazards for vapor and gas mixtures

Chemical Reactivity Testing

Laboratory testing to quantify reactive chemical hazards, including the possibility of material incompatibility, instability, and runaway chemical reactions

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 safety handle the effluent discharge from an overpressure event

Thermal Stability

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

UN-DOT

Classification of hazardous materials subject to shipping and storage regulations

Safety Data Sheets

Develop critical safety data for inclusion in SDS documents

Biological

Model transport of airborne virus aerosols to guide safe operations and ventilation upgrades

Radioactive

Model transport of contamination for source term and leak path factor analysis

Fire Analysis

Model transport of heat and smoke for fire analysis

Flammable or Toxic Gas

transport of flammable or toxic gas during a process upset

OSS consulting, adiabatic & reaction calorimetry and consulting

Onsite safety studies can help identify explosibility and chemical reaction hazards so that appropriate testing, simulations, or calculations are identified to support safe scale up

Mechanical, Piping, and Electrical

Engineering and testing to support safe plant operations and develop solutions to problems in heat transfer, fluid flow, electric power systems

Battery Safety

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

Hydrogen Safety

Testing and consulting on the explosion risks associated with devices and processes which use or produce hydrogen

Spent Fuel

Safety analysis for packaging, transport, and storage of spent nuclear fuel

Decommissioning, Decontamination and Remediation (DD&R)

Safety analysis to underpin decommissioning process at facilities which have produced or used radioactive nuclear materials

Laboratory Testing & Software Capabilities

Bespoke testing and modeling services to validate analysis of DD&R processes

Nuclear Overview

Our Nuclear Services Group is recognized for comprehensive evaluations to help commercial nuclear power plants operate efficiently and stay compliant.

Severe Accident Analysis and Risk Assessment

Expert analysis of possible risk and consequences from nuclear plant accidents

Thermal Hydraulics

Testing and analysis to ensure that critical equipment will operate under adverse environmental conditions

Environmental Qualification (EQ) and Equipment Survivability (ES)

Testing and analysis to ensure that critical equipment will operate under adverse environmental conditions

Laboratory Testing & Software Capabilities

Testing and modeling services to support resolution of emergent safety issues at a power plant

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 (DSC/ARC supplies, CPA, C80, Super Stirrer)

Products and equipment for the process safety or process development laboratory

FERST

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

FATE

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

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Recent Posts

The Importance of Flammability Testing

Posted by The Fauske Team on 11.11.20

It happens with some regularity – news of a fire or explosion in an industrial facility that causes considerable property damage or, even worse, worker casualties. It has been said before, but continues to remain true, even one incident of fires and explosions resulting from an employee in the building mixing chemicals, is one too many. 

FlammabilityThe all too frequent occurrence of fires and explosions in the process industries that use flammable materials is typically the result of a couple of factors, an explosive mixture being present in the vapor space, lack of knowledge of the properties of the chemical’s inherent safety implications or inadequate safety procedures. And, that in a nutshell, is why flammability testing is important.

In order to minimize the risk of fire or explosion, it is important to evaluate the flammability characteristics of the material to understand key characteristics such as the lower flammability limit, upper flammability limit, limiting oxygen concentration and deflagration index. Simply put, these are defined as:

  • Lower Flammability limit (LFL) - the lowest concentration at which a mixture of flammable vapor or gas and air is flammable
  • Upper Flammability Limit (UFL) - the highest concentration at which a mixture of flammable vapor or gas and air is flammable
  • Limiting Oxygen Concentration (LOC) - the minimum concentration of oxygen required to produce a flammable event when mixed with a flammable vapor or gas in any concentration. 
  • Deflagration Index (KG) - the volume-normalized maximum rate of pressure rise for a flammable mixture

A variety of different flammability tests can be performed to allow for determination of these characteristics, and the understanding of these conditions is essential when implementing proper safety practices.

When conducting flammability testing, it is important that customers communicate what data is being sought so that testing can be properly designed in order to determine the necessary flammability property of a chemical mixture. 

A good flammability testing regime will take into consideration the many different variables that affect the flammability of a specific chemical: oxidizing environment, temperature, pressure, ignition energy, size and geometry of the vessel, gas composition, etc. There are a variety of pressure vessels varying in size and geometry to use for flammability testing purposes dependent on the particular need. The choice (spherical, cylindrical, large, small, glass, steel, etc.) depends on the particular test design. A well defined ignition source is also necessary, as is a good data acquisition system for monitoring pressure and temperature.

Accounting for these variables can result in test data that is much more applicable to your specific process than information taken from literature. Experts are happy to have a discussion with you about your flammable hazard concerns and work with you on designing tests that get you the information you need.  The goal is to provide you with specific data - not just data.

For more information regarding how flammability testing might be important to you, contact the flammability department at flammability@fauske.com. You can also subscribe to our quarterly Process Safety News below!

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Topics: Flammability hazard, flammable vapor, flammable gas, LFL, flammability, flammability test, industrial explosion, industrial fire, testing

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