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FEATURE ATEX & EXPLOSION SAFETY


SEALS SUPPLIED TO NEW EX-CLASSIFIED MANUFACTURING SITE


I


nternational safety seal manufacturer Roxtec has supported pharmaceutical group Guerbet with an


upgrade project at its Irish manufacturing site. Guerbet specialises in diagnostic and interventional


medical imaging. It operates nine manufacturing sites around the world, including one at the Damastown Industrial Estate north of Dublin that makes active pharmaceutical ingredients for the firm’s MRI, X-Ray and interventional imaging products range. Ronan Mills, Roxtec market manager for Ireland,


says Roxtec was brought in to supply Guerbet with a range of specialist pipe and cable safety seals. Part of the project involved extending the County Dublin facility’s Ex-classified manufacturing areas. These areas contain an explosion hazard, requiring airtight seals that protect against the risk of explosion to be fitted at all pipe and cable entry points.


Optimising cathodic protection systems for hazardous environments


Cathodic protection (CP) is a critical tool when it comes to combatting corrosion in crucial infrastructure. However, what considerations must you make when using CP systems to control corrosion in hazardous environments containing volatile materials? Here, Ian Loudon, Omniflex, discusses best practice for using CP systems in hazardous environments, like those found in South Africa’s Sunrise Energy project


L Mills says: “We’ve worked with Guerbet on a regular


basis, helping to support facility upgrades in hazardous areas. Our Ex cable transit devices are designed specifically for environments where it’s necessary to guard against the risk of explosion. “We supplied Guerbet with transits offering Ex e


protection, which provides increased safety for explosive gas atmospheres. These products have helped to create a safe work environment for the company’s employees by forming an airtight seal and isolating rooms with potentially hazardous gases. They also play a crucial role in protecting valuable equipment.” All Roxtec’s Ex sealing solutions are certified according to the ATEX directive and the IECEx International Certification Scheme. Various pipe and cable sealing solutions were installed


during the project, including Roxtec G Ex transits with sealing modules, RS seals and R Ex transits. As well as preventing ignition of explosive atmospheres, Roxtec’s Ex products are also fire rated and watertight. The Ex range includes a wide variety of seals designed to handle different cable sizes and openings, making them incredibly flexible and suitable for countless scenarios. Mills adds: “We created numerous drawings to


support the Dublin upgrade project and have previously provided training to Guerbet’s installation teams. The firm typically requires seals to have 15 per cent spare capacity so future upgrades are quick and straightforward. The flexible design of Roxtec’s transits ensured this was easily achieved.”


Roxtec 12 WINTER 2020 | INDUSTRIAL COMPLIANCE www.roxtec.com


ocated in the paradise of Saldanha Bay, Sunrise Energy is Africa’s largest open-


access Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG) import terminal. It is a public–private partnership between Mining, Oil & Gas Services (MOGS) and the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC). By enabling the import of LPG in large quantities, the facility advances the oil and gas sector in the province by boosting regional energy security and downstream competition. On large scale LPG projects like this, it is


vital that CP systems are used to protect structures against corrosion. Normally, after being installed, CP systems are left to operate unmonitored, especially when they are used on structures that are underground or submerged in water. This is the case in the Sunrise Energy project, where large LPG containers fitted with CP systems are buried underground. In these situations, it is extremely difficult, sometimes impossible, to physically check on your CP systems to make sure they are operating correctly. So, what can be done instead to make sure the system is running safely and effectively?


PROVIDING PEACE OF MIND Firstly, all CP systems in the hazardous area should be intrinsically safe. This provides reassurance that the electrical equipment operates safely in hazardous environments by limiting the amounts of electrical and thermal energy available for ignition. This is achieved by only allowing low voltages and currents to enter the hazardous area and by preventing any significant energy storage from occurring.


In the Sunrise Energy project, where


large quantities of explosive LPG are involved, the importance of having intrinsically safe CP systems cannot be overstated. In this scenario, a single spark from a power leak could create an ignition source for a massive explosion that could endanger lives. In South Africa, the SANS 60079 standards define the requirements for electrical equipment in explosive atmospheres. All CP systems in the hazardous area must conform to this as a minimum requirement. Next, because it is difficult to physically


monitor the CP systems in use, remote monitoring can be used to check performance and system integrity. To help provide this, Sunrise Energy engaged Omniflex, a specialist in remote monitoring and control of CP systems. Omniflex’s systems provide benefits such as automatic testing and results logging, long-term cloud-based data storage, regular status reports by email and alarm condition alerts by SMS and email. Remote monitoring of CP systems offers


several key benefits for customers. It reduces ongoing maintenance costs since you do not need to physically inspect difficult-to-access systems, like underground LPG containers, or pay for engineers to conduct routine on-site inspections. Furthermore, it gives you peace of mind that your system is operating efficiently and effectively around the clock and alerts you when there is a problem.


Omniflex www.omniflex.com / INDUSTRIALCOMPLIANCE


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