Servicio de Información Comunitario sobre Investigación y Desarrollo - CORDIS

Reducing gas explosion risk

The Flame Acceleration Simulator (FLACS) is a sophisticated software code with computational fluid dynamics (CFD) as its main basis. Initially developed for use in-house, a programme of technical development and market testing has improved the code's integrity and usability to the point where it has decisive advantages over existing techniques. The product is finding a ready market amongst customers in the petro-chemical, engineering consultancy and insurance industries.

FLACS calculates explosion pressure and other flow parameters as a function of time and space for different geometries and explosion scenarios. It takes account of the interaction between flame, vent areas and obstacles such as equipment and pipe work. The full gas dynamic partial differential equations are solved for a set of control volumes, including the effects of turbulence and chemical reactions. The build-up of flammable gas clouds, the impact of improved ventilation on the cloud build-up and the gas explosion process and its consequences can all be investigated. The effect of mitigation techniques, such as water spray, can also be modelled as well as far field blast effects. All this is possible for various scenarios, defined according to parameters such as wind direction and speed, gas composition and leak rate, leak and ignition locations etc. Plant geometries can be imported directly from computer aided design (CAD)-systems, and results can be presented by a number of variables.

Reported by

Christian Michelsen Research
Fantoftvegen 38
5036 Fantoft
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