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in the 1920s, was a device with a valve that indicated methane levels in the atmosphere. The level was detected through a catalytic diffusion sensor which burned the gas inside it to provide an accurate reading. However, each time the user wanted to see how much methane was present, they had to manually press a button on the monitor.


Today, the focus has moved to developing existing monitor and sensing technology to address the market demand for increasing gas sensing range, performance and reliability. Preference is also given to solutions that are easy to use and maintain, lowering the cost of ownership and ensuring user acceptance and compliance with legislation. Global regulatory standards also ensure that detectors are safe for use in hazardous environments, while performance standards provide a benchmark for toxic and combustible gas detection capabilities. Due to the quantifiable levels of risk reduction to people,

Industry Water & Waste Water Treatment

assets and the environment, there is also an increasing trend towards functional safety and Safety Integrity Level (SIL) assessments and approvals.

A number of fixed and portable gas detectors are now on the market which can detect and measure multiple gases using a range of sensor technologies. Classic detectors include infrared, catalytic bead, electrochemical, photo- ionization and metal oxide semi- conductor technologies. Significant enhancements have been made in solution robustness and reliability.

Most recently, progress in new sensing technologies has been made, with the introduction of acoustic and hyper-spectral imaging to support gas detection and response. Gas detection devices have become smarter, with advanced diagnostics capabilities to ensure increased performance and the ability to transmit data and information over a range of wired and wireless communications protocols. As these technologies and standards continue to evolve the number of incidents across high risk industries will continue to fall.

THE NEXT GENERATION While the presence of harmful gases within some industries and working environments has not changed, there has been a significant step-change in the number and performance of gas detection market solutions, driven by an increasingly safety conscious

Common gases

chlorine, hydrogen sulphide, methane, oxygen

Petroleum Production & Refining hydrogen sulphide, combustible gases

Natural Gas Production & Transport natural gas, hydrogen sulphide, mercaptans

Mining Food Processing & Cold Storage methane, oxygen, dust chlorine, ammonia, methane, dust

Grain Storage & Transportation methane, oxygen, phosphine, dust Electroplating

hydrogen cyanide

Paper Manufacturing Fertilizer Manufacturing

Semiconductor Manufacturing & Processing

Table 1 36

chlorine, chlorine dioxide, hydrogen sulphide, sulphur dioxide, oxygen


arsine, phosphine, silane, hydrogen, hydrochloric acid, numerous other gases

industry and workforce. As a result, the demand for gas detectors has grown, as have user expectations. This has driven development of new sensing technologies in addition to increasing levels of environmental and contaminant robustness for conventional technologies. The industry is also looking for new opportunities to significantly reduce the size, weight and power usage of gas detectors. Diagnostic and communications capabilities are set to continue evolving to enable greater ability to share and communicate data.

Scott Safety offers gas detection developments in three key areas: through smarter high performance devices, enhanced connectivity and by providing thoughtful and user differentiated experiences. These modular, scalable, design-for-six- sigma technology platforms have comprehensive global performance and reliability approvals. Scott Safety’s Meridian fixed universal gas detector offers a good example of this, as it is a single gas detection solution that supports over 58 combustible and toxic gases. It also features an intelligent single-handed plug and play sensor design, allowing for up to three sensors to be connected, directly or remotely, live in hazardous locations without requiring the area to be declassified.

Portable solutions are also available including the Protégé Multi Gas Monitor and Protégé ZM Single Gas Monitor. These hand-held solutions offer a gas monitoring solution suitable for detecting oxygen, combustibles, hydrogen, sulphide and/ or carbon monoxide. Certified to the highest possible global performance standards, Protégé is ergonomically designed to fit in the palm of the hand and can be used in the harshest conditions. It is also suited to confined space applications.

We’ve come a long way from the caged canary gas detection solution and today’s industrial workers benefit from leading-edge technology to keep them safe from exposure to harmful gases.

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