Importance of Gas Sensor in the Industrial Automation
Published by : Industrial Automation
In industrial automation facilities, sensors play a pivotal role to ensure safety in the production unit by predicting and preventing numerous potential hazards. These sensors should be positioned accurately to detect any gaseous accumulation before it creates a serious hazard. The main problem for gas detection systems is that there are no precise guidelines for approximately 95% of installation systems.
Typically, gas sensory systems only have industry-approved best practice guidance protocols for its proper installation. This is because of the varied complexity in the behavior of individual gases. There are over 400 gases and each gas has its own unique sets of properties, which poses difficulties for detection.
The position of a gas detector is primarily determined by the purpose of its usage. Several important factors to be considered for the best positioning of a gas sensor in the industry are discussed below.
Important Factors when Positioning Gas Sensors
Leakage monitoring - In the case of leakage monitoring, the measuring head is installed with due consideration to the likely points of leakage, such as flanges, valves, pressure reducers, pumps, etc. This enables leakage detection at the earliest.
Area monitoring - For area monitoring such as insolvent and paint warehouses, where there are no well-defined potential leakage sources, the detectors are uniformly distributed throughout the hazardous area in view of local flow conditions.
Detectors are placed in the inhalation area (head height) in areas such as laboratory workplaces, where there is a possibility of leakage of toxic gases.
Identifying appropriate gas detector types
The identification of the most appropriate gas detector type is essential. A gas sensor must be fast, accurate and must not be affected by the cross-interference of other gases present in the area.
In an industrial automation facility that contains lead, sulfur, or other fumes, a catalytic-type gas sensor must not be used. These gas fumes could damage the catalytic beads and reduce detection sensitivity.
How much area should a gas detector cover?
Even though there are no official standards that specify an exact area of coverage of gas detector, the general guidelines for fixed-point gas detectors in open areas is approximately a 5m radius coverage for each detector or 75 to 100 square meters per detector.
Extra detectors must be placed near potential leak sources or where a gas cloud could accumulate.