Our White Papers

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    There is a need to establish a systematic methodology for (a) identifying the buildings at risk, (b) assessing if the risk is tolerable, (c) and cost effective risk reduction where applicable to as low as reasonably practicable (ALARP).
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    QRA and ERS Analysis are both components of a successful Process Safety Management Program. While both studies often share the same information, they tend to remain separate, independent, studies. However, at facilities where relief valves can vent toxic and flammable materials directly to the atmosphere, these discharges can be a significant contributor to overall risk.
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    The development of accurate chemical interaction matrices can provide valuable information for the management of potential chemical reactivity hazards. SuperChems™ 1, a component of Process Safety Office® 2, provides intuitive and easy to use utilities for the rapid development of chemical interaction matrices. These utilities were developed based on known heuristics and rules for the interaction of certain chemical groupings.
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    The landscape of relief systems and general process safety management compliance is evolving. This evolution is due in part to enforcement or potential enforcement of RAGAGEP. Because of RAGAGEP [1, 2] considerations, oversizing a relief device is no longer acceptable or desirable from an engineering perspective and from a legal liability perspective.
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    Numerous scenarios can lead to retrograde and phase change (RPC) flow [1] in relief and de-pressuring systems. Potential hazard scenarios considered often include, but are not limited to, depressuring during process upsets (cold depressuring), relief or depressuring under fire exposure, and relief or depressuring under runaway reactions.
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    Risk-ranking is a common methodology for making risk-based decisions without conducting quantitative risk analysis. The basis for risk ranking is the risk matrix that has both a consequence and frequency axis. The product of consequence and frequency provides a measure of risk.
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    The main purpose of the Consequence Analysis phase to be developed during the execution of a risk-based quantitative assessment is to answer the following question: “Which are the impacts of identified hazardous scenarios?” This step is critical for estimating reliable and accurate effects / consequences from Loss of Containment scenarios (LOCs), avoiding unrealistic results that would directly impact on the decision-making process. Additionally, it is essential that Consequence Analysis includes the identification and quantification of ALL potential outcomes that a hazardous release may cause. Event Tree Analysis (ETA) methodology is a valuable tool for identifying all these potential outcomes. The present paper introduces the consequence analysis step by providing guidance on consequence modeling (i.e., source term characterization, dispersion of harmful gases/vapors, fires and explosions) and criteria for event trees development.
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    This manuscript is divided in three sections. The first and second sections address human vulnerability and structural damage due to explosions and fires, respectively. For explosions, overpressure, impulse and probit analysis are the parameters of interest; while for fires, thermal flux, thermal dose and probit analysis are the pertinent parameters.
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    This paper proposes a risk-based approach for identifying process equipment impacted by explosions with potential for escalation.
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    Escalation and domino effect triggered by fires is a well-known phenomenon that has caused past severe accidents in the process industry. This paper proposes a risk-based approach for domino effect analysis by combining Exceedance Curves (ECs) with Thermal Stress Dynamic Analysis (TSDA).
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    Fragment projection following vessel burst scenarios is a potential cause of domino effect and escalation in the Chemical Process Industry (CPI). This proposes a risk-based missile impact domino effect analysis based on current research and published literature.
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    The major concerns for anyone involved with risk assessment related to explosions is to estimate the explosion wave shape and the overpressure and impulse as a function of distance from the explosion.
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    This manuscript introduces the Single Degree Of Freedom (SDOF) approach for predicting the response of structures being impacted by an explosion. The concept of pressure-impulse diagrams is introduced and identified as a valuable tool to be used during the analysis of results generated during the development of a risk-based quantitative assessment.
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    This manuscript describes a risk-based approach with the aim to identify which occupied buildings in a process facility could be impacted by thermal radiation due to fires. This approach complies with API Recommended Practice 752 and 753 criteria and it consists of the following two steps: (1) risk-based quantitative assessment and (2) exceedance curve development. Additionally, a sensitivity analysis for risk reduction measures is evaluated. A case study is developed for illustrative purposes and the results confirm the following approach capabilities and characteristics: (a) a risk-based approach is considered the foundation for developing exceedance curves, (b) exceedance curves are a good engineering tool for identifying which occupied buildings comply or do not comply with given tolerability risk criteria; and (c) sensitivity analysis of outcomes associated with high risk levels impacting affected buildings is an effective and inexpensive approach for defining and comparing suitable and cost-effective risk reductions measures during the decision-making process.
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    A detailed risk-based approach is proposed for addressing flammable and toxic dispersions impacting occupied buildings. The approach is based on the results from a complete quantitative risk-based assessment, which provides the following information per each outcome impacting the target location under analysis:
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