In the Manufacturing and Process industry, gas detection systems play an important role in ensuring the safety of plant and process area. A gas detector is a device that detects the presence of gases in an area, often as part of a safety system. They are often considered as part of critical safety equipments. Gas detectors can be used to detect combustible, flammable and toxic gases, and oxygen depletion in the process area. Gas leak detection methods became a concern after the effects of harmful gases on human health were discovered. Before modern electronic sensors, early detection methods relied on less precise detectors. Gas detectors can be classified according to the operation mechanism (semiconductors, oxidation, catalytic, photoionization, infrared, etc.). Gas detectors come packaged into two main form factors: portable devices and fixed gas detectors. Our focus here though, will be on portable gas detectors and its application as applied in both the oil and gas and manufacturing industry.
WHAT IS A PORTABLE GAS DETECTOR AND HOW DOES IT WORK?
Portable gas detectors refer to gas detectors which are worn or carried by an individual, typically battery operated. Portable monitors are used for toxic or combustible gas detection, as well as for oxygen deficiency monitoring in confined spaces.
Portable gas detectors differ from gas analyzers in that where analysers are used to analyse a sample for a variety of specific compounds, a gas detector is used to monitor for, and warn of the existence of specific toxic or combustible gases and oxygen deficiency hazards. Typical measurement levels will be in the low parts per million level for toxic gas, while combustible gases are measured in percent LEL (Lower Explosive Limit), and Oxygen deficiency is measured in percent level. Portable gas detectors come in either single sensor configurations or offers the benefits of a multi-gas sensor configuration system in a transportable unit. These units are designed for team protection or area surveillance for short-term work where fixed gas systems are not suitable. Personal gas detection instruments are essential to providing workers with a reliable form of protection. Ideal for confined spaces, spot leak testing and mobile use, Applications include underground utilities vaults, boiler rooms, post-fire sites, sewers, industrial plants, industrial hygiene, first responder crews and remote fleets. Gas detectors use a sensor to measure the concentration of particular gases in the atmosphere. The sensor serves as a reference point and scale, producing a measurable electric current when a chemical reaction caused by a specific gas occurs. The sensor will monitor these currents and alarm the user when the presence of gas approaches an amount that is hazardous.