Tank farms are used for the storage of highly flammable and explosive substances; Consequently, preventive fire safety is of main significance. When rehabilitation of such a tank farm is deliberate, contractors typically recommend intensive – and thus costly – measures. A fire-protection solution developed by TÜV SÜD demonstrates that an equivalent stage of safety can be reached with a far more cost-effective solution. A central position in injury limitation is played by early hearth detection utilizing thermographic cameras.
Numerous tank farms all through Germany store petrol, diesel, kerosene or liquefied petroleum fuel (LPG). In contact with air, these extremely flammable substances can kind explosive mixtures. Given this, tank farms require special measures in the subject of preventive fireplace protection. If rehabilitation of fire-protection techniques becomes necessary at an older tank farm, far-reaching measures should be taken, not only by the use of precaution but additionally to exclude attainable legal responsibility risks. And but not each measure that is technologically possible can also be necessary in case of a rehabilitation, as may be seen from the example of a tank farm in Bavaria, Germany.
The tank farm is situated at a basin of a river port in Bavaria. The a half of the tank farm in need of rehabilitation covers 24 tanks with a storage quantity of between 600 and a pair of,000 cubic metres. The tank farm is used for intermediate storage of extremely flammable fluids with flame points of < 21 degrees Celsius, as outlined in the German hazardous substances laws. In hearth inspections and on-site inspections after incidents, the inspectors had identified main non-conformities in the fire-extinguishing system. To substitute the outdated and non-conforming system, an engineering firm submitted an in depth listing of measures. These measures totally satisfied all regulatory necessities however represented a very cost-intensive solution, requiring a full rehabilitation utilizing conventional extinguishing techniques. For the tank-farm working company, the prices of implementing these measures would have added up to 1.7 million euros.
In fire safety, the challenge lies in connecting well-founded technological data and legal know-how. In practice this means harmonising reasonable engineering providers and authorized purposes to acquire a cohesive, economically possible and simply applied fire-protection idea.
Alternative resolution developed by TÜV SÜD
At the operating company’s request, TÜV SÜD’s third-party consultants validated the individual measures and the cost-effectiveness of the rehabilitation plan submitted by the engineering agency. Owing to the big number of deficiencies identified within the tank farm, the specialists first ready a list of priorities with the measures essential to fulfil the protection requirements and obtain the protection goals. ร้านซ่อมเครื่องวัดความดันโลหิต arrived at the conclusion that not all of the proposed measures actually needed to be implemented. Starting from this finding, they then drew up an alternative fire-protection idea that might finally scale back the projected prices by one third.
TÜV SÜD’s rehabilitation plan included the fire-protection infrastructure already in place on the tank farm, such as a non-automatic foam extinguishing system with a total foaming-agent provide of 10,500 litres distributed across two tanks, two submerged pumps within the port basin with a pump capability of one hundred eighty m3 per hour to ensure water supply for hearth combating and sprinkling the shells and the roofs of the tanks, handbook triggering of the shut-off valves and a transformer station powered by the regional vitality provider. The feed-in of emergency energy was effected by the local professional fire division.
The engineering agency, in contrast, had planned to replace the entire fire-extinguishing system. They wanted to put in three mobile extinguishing-agent distribution techniques in container kind for remote managed sprinkling and foaming of the tanks. This resolution would have required the set up of new electrical, operational and management techniques as properly as new pipe routes connecting the extinguishing-agent distribution methods with the fire-fighting systems in the tank fields. The prices for the three extinguishing-agent distribution systems in container kind alone would have added up to around 1.2 million euros.
Incipient fireplace preventing situation with intact energy provide and free access to the tank farm.
Implementation of three packages of measures
The various rehabilitation idea developed by TÜV SÜD, which additionally met the necessities of the Bavarian Building Code (BayBo [1]), offered for 3 essential packages of measures to achieve the protection and security goals.
First, set up of a completely automatic infrared measuring system made by DIAS Infrared to make sure early fire detection. The system’s seven thermographic cameras are put in on pan-tilt items. They detect modifications in temperature at the surfaces of the tanks made of various supplies and situated in the space monitored by the cameras, earlier than these modifications in temperature can cause a hearth. As the cameras can transfer, the areas to be monitored may be divided into sectors. The cameras then approach these sectors cyclically in sequence. To protect the cameras towards exterior influences, they’re housed in ventilated and heated weatherproof enclosures (Fig. 1). Monitoring focuses totally on the security units of the tanks, pumps and motors and on the filling systems on the tank-farm premises. The management room at the tank farm and the local skilled hearth division are notified immediately as soon because the temperature exceeds a sure restrict. The measure package additionally consists of distant triggering of the extinguishing-agent provide from the management centre and automation of the safety units.
Incipient hearth fighting situation with energy loss where access to the tank farm is blocked by a cargo train.
In addition, it covers rehabilitation of the sprinkler and foam-extinguisher system. In this context, TÜV SÜD’s answer offered for substitute of the leaking and corroded pipe sections with new pipes and for set up of three fastened foam-extinguishing techniques within the form of foam monitors to fight incipient fires immediately. In addition, a cellular foam monitor was planned as a backup.
A third focus area considerations safeguarding the ability provide required for early hearth detection and hearth preventing. According to the regional power supplier, energy outages might have a period of at least 30 minutes. Given this, the tank-farm wanted an unbiased energy provide system that was able to ensure power supply for at least 2 hours. The experts relied on battery buffering and a diesel operated emergency power unit to resolve this drawback.
Fire safety must ensure achievement of the safety goals
Protection aims and equivalent security level reached
The fire-protection answer presented by TÜV SÜD was agreed with each the tank farm’s working firm, the municipal authority and the skilled fire department. The three measure packages additionally complied with the required protection goals and the safety levels. And finally, they proved far cheaper than the solution initially proposed. Since rehabilitation of the tank farm, early fireplace detection along side improved fire-protection infrastructure has turn out to be a central a part of harm limitation. Since the rehabilitation concept was carried out, the tank-farm’s working firm – working with the skilled fire division – has been able to successfully counteract all potential scenarios of incipient fireplace successfully and at an early stage, even in instances of energy loss or when entry to the tank farm is blocked (see Figures 2 and 3).
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Classification beneath the Bavarian Building Code (Bayerische Bauordnung, BayBo)
Tank farms are installations of a particular kind and use (special structures). Their operation entails the dealing with and storing of highly explosive or flammable substances. Protection measures and safety precautions thus not solely fall within the working company’s accountability however are additionally a matter of public interest. Given this, the BayBO stipulates requirements including material necessities which, as “General clauses of fireside protection”, assist to assist the protection aims outlined in Article 12. However, according to article 3 (1) deviations from the technical building regulations are possible if an alternative resolution is found that is equivalent in terms of fulfilling the general necessities in paragraph 1. In different words, the necessities laid down within the Building Code are deemed complied with if the widely recognised guidelines of structure and expertise are fulfilled.