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Bab

Fire and Explosion


Hazards
Prof. Yulianto S Nugroho dan Tim
Department of Mechanical Engineering University of Indonesia

Yulianto S Nugroho dan Tim

Flashover

Outline of talk

Introduction
Heat of combustion and heat transfer
Fire triangle and tetrahedron
Fuel
Flammable limits
Ignition sources
Flame spread and flash over
Explosion hazards
Product of combustion
Fire protection systems

Reference :
Charles A. Wentz, Safety, Health and Environmental Protection, MGH, 1998.
Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Introduction

Fire, which is a combustion process, is a complex chemical reaction


between fuel, oxygen, and ignition sources. This exothermic reaction
could involve a variety of fuels (solid, liquid or gas). The liquid and
solid fuels normally vaporise before burning. These gases and vapor
mix with oxygen or air to form the ignitable mixture. As these fuels
oxidised there is an emission of heat. If the combustion process
results in a rapid pressure rise, an explosion may occur.
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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Heat of combustion

Generally, hydrocarbon gases like methane and ethane have higher


heats of combustion than coal or hydrocarbon liquids. The ratio of
hydrogen tocarbon in the molecules is the critical factor in fuels
heat content. The higher H/C ratio, the higher the heat content of the
substance.
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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Heat transfer

There are three heat transfer mechanism.


Heat loss by the conduction mechanism will increase proportionally
with the refractory surface and the incineration temperature.
Heat transfer by convection is related to the properties of the
convection medium and the geometry of the system.
Radiation is the most important mechanism for heat transfer in a fire.
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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Fire triangle
The three elements of fuel,
oxygen, and ignition are
necessary to ignite ordinary
burning and fires.
The fire triangle concept is
also used to prevent fires or
control them once they have
begun.

Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Fire tetrahedron
The fire tetrahedron adds a
forth
component-chemical
chain reaction - as a
necessity in the prevention
and control of fires.

Fuel

Heat

The chemical chain reaction


involves free radicals, which
are important intermediates
in
the
initiation
and
propagation of combustion
reaction.
The removal of of any one of
the for faces on the left
diagram results in fire
extinction.

Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Fuel
The flammability of hydrocarbon
is greatly affected by substitution
of, particularly, halogen for
hydrogen.
For example, clorine atoms in
hydrocarbons greatly reduce the
flammability of the substance by
interfering with the combustion
chemical chain reaction.
The flash point is the minimum
temperature that a liquid will give
off sufficient vapor to ignite with
oxygen in air.
Flammable
and
combustible
liquids are characterised by flash
points and boiling points.

Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Flammable limits : measurement


When gases or vapors form flammable
mixtures with air or oxygen, there is a
minimum concentration of gas or vapor
below which the propagation of flame
does not occur on contact with a source
of ignition.
In the measurement, aixture of gas and air
is introduced to the tube. Then, an
ignition source is introduced to lower end
of the tube which is first opened by the
removal of a cover plate.
A mixture below the lower flammable limit
(LFL) is too lean to burn or explode.
A mixture above the upper flammable limit
(UFL) is too rich to burn or explode.
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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Flammable limits (cont) : mixture


The LFL and UFL for a vapor mixture
can be determined from the individual
components of the mixture.
The LFL of a flammable vapor can be
estimated from its vapor pressure at
its flash point at atmospheric
pressure.

The Antoine equation can be useful in


estimating the vapor pressure as a
function of temperature.

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Flammable limits (cont) : data

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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Flammable limits (cont) : MIE


Very small amounts of energy are
sufficient to ignite flammable
vapor/air mixture.
The minimum of the left curve is
known as the Minimum ignition
energy (MIE).

Effect of temperature on the limits


of flammability of a flammable
vapour/air mixture at a constant
initial pressure.

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Flammable limits (cont) : diagram

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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Flammable limits (cont) : diagram

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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Ignition sources
Red
Flammability
0-4
Blue
Yellow
Health
Reactivity
0-4
0-4
White
Special

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NFPA 704 hazard identification

Electric sparks
Smoking and matches
Frictional heat
Hot surfaces
Overheated materials
Open flames
Spontaneous heating
Welding and cutting
Combustion particles

Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Flame spread : burning velocity

Propagation of premixed flame through a flammable mixture in a duct


following ignition () at the closed end.
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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

Flame spread

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Flame spread

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Flame spread

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Flame spread

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Flame spread

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Flame spread

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Flash over

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Flash over

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Flash over

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Flash over

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Flash over

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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

EXPLOSION
Definition:
A reaction that produces a
change in the state of matter that results
in a rapid and violent release of energy.
Types:
- Mechanical
- Chemical
- Nuclear

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Explosive
Definition: A material (chemical or nuclear) that
can be initiated to undergo a very rapid, self
propagating decomposition, resulting in:
a. formation of more stable materials
b. the liberation of heat
c. development of a sudden pressure effect.

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Materials in the form of compound or mixture of


compound which suddenly undergoes a very
rapid
chemical
transformation
with
the
simultaneous production of large quantities of
heat and gases (CO, CO2, N2, steam, O2) and
always accompined by a vigoros shock and an
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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc
associated noise (brisance)

Explosion
Explosion:
A very sudden release of
energy resulting in a shock or pressure
wave.
Shock, Blast or pressure wave: Pressure
wave that causes damage.
Deflagration:
Reaction wave speed <
speed of sound.
Detonation:
Reaction wave speed >
speed of sound.
Speed of sound:
ambient T, P.
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344 m/s, 1129 ft/s at

Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc


Deflagrations are the usual case
with

Dust Explosion

Dusts of most combustible solids are an


explosion hazard

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Sufficiently small particle size


Sufficient concentration dispersed in air
Ignition source
Secondary explosions often exceed initial explosion

Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

The origin od Explosions


First experimental proof:
Nikolay Nikolaevich Semenov (Russian, 1896-1986)
Investigation (1926) of the phosphorus vapouroxygen
reaction.
Explosion occurs, if the partial pressure of O 2 is
between two limits. Interpretation via a branching
chain reaction.
Sir Cyril Norman Hinshelwood (English, 1897-1967)
Investigation (1927) of the H2O2

discovery of the 1 st
explosion limits

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reaction.
and 2 nd

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1956: Semenov and Hinshelwood:


"for their researches into the mechanism of chemical reactions"

Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc

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Chain reaction

Chain carriers (also called chain centres, i.e. reactive intermediates) are
generated in the initiation steps.
In the chain propagation steps the chain carriers react with the reactants,
produce products and regenerate the chain carriers.
In the inhibition step the chain carriers react with the product, reactants are
reformed, and there is no reduction in the number of chain carriers.
In the branching step two or more chain carriers are produced from a
single chain carrier.
In the termination steps the chain carriers are consumed.

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BLEVE
BLEVE: Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion

Vapor
Liquid

Vessel with liquid


stored below its
normal boiling point

Below liquid level - liquid keeps metal walls cool.


Above liquid level - metal walls overheat and lose
strength.

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Explosion

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Explosion

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Explosion

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Explosion

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Explosion

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Fire radiation hazard

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Blast wave

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Fire radiation hazard

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Product of combustion / fires

Air pollution caused by forest fires

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Fire protection systems : fire action

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Fire protection systems : fire


extinguisher

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Dr. Ir. Yulianto S Nugroho, MSc