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A preliminary explore to the forced ventilation on the toxic gas release/dispersion and the hazard mitigation within a petrochemical plant
I. Y.-P., Gu S.-G.,
Published in Elsevier Ltd
Volume: 69
More than thirty-five years ago, the Bhopal disaster shook the whole world and investigators found out that many people survived just because they turned on the fans in their bedrooms. It was postulated that the forced ventilation played an important role in diluting the toxic gas and saved these people. In order to provide evidence to solve this old mystery, this research employed FLACS software to assess the hazardous degree of a toxic gas (hydrogen sulfide) leakage within a petrochemical process. Series of gas dispersion simulations were performed to actualize the hazardous characteristics and the corresponding risks of the release accident. The study shows that the hazardous level and the hazard range can be greatly influenced when parameters, such as the gas leakage circumstances (atmospheric conditions and wind speed) and the mitigation measures (direction of fans and their speed) are altered. By using explosion-proof fans in different positions and ventilation directions, combined with the natural wind in a certain direction, this research attempts to detect the best combination from various mitigation designs and to compare the influence of fan directions on hazard mitigation. It is also the first time of its kind to simulate the effect of forced ventilation on hazard mitigation within a process plant. The results show that the hazardous level of a toxic release can be effectively alleviated, when the direction of the mechanical ventilation is against the natural wind direction. With the help of the CFD simulation and the quantitative risk analysis technique, different loss prevention strategies can be tested via this method in order to establish a safer working environment. © 2020 Elsevier Ltd
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