Fire and Gas Detector Mapping Services

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Fire and Gas Detector Mapping Services 2017-06-25T19:58:07+00:00

Fire and Gas systems (FGS) are important tools for safeguarding process plants and production facilities that handle flammable and toxic materials. All such facilities have inherent fire risk that can not be fully mitigated by preventative instrumented functions, in some cases these facilities require the installation of fire and gas systems to mitigate these hazards. Kenexis assists our clients in the design, implementation and testing of these systems.

Kenexis Fire and Gas Design Basis services include assistance in all phases of the fire and gas system lifecycle. These services are based around our unparalleled expertise in not only fire and gas system design, but also process knowledge and overall risk analysis capabilities. This expertise is then deployed using best-in-class tools such as the Effigy™ fire and gas system computer aided detector mapping software. This combination provides the most rigorous analysis, which results in the safest plant while also resulting in the lowest cost.

Optimizing Gas Detector Placement

Using Kenexis work practices, we are able to mathematically validate the proper detector locations to maximize coverage with the minimal number of detectors. In a recent study, the prescriptive model of 27 detectors was reduced to 14 detectors using performance based modeling techniques, while only reducing the actual coverage from 91% to 86%. The eliminated 13 detectors, were only providing 5% of the total coverage.

This result is a substantial reduction in capital expense, installation cost, reduced conduit and space burden, and the reduction of the maintenance cost of the life of the platform.

While these results were very good, not every scenario produces the same results. In fact, the quantity of detectors can actually increase to provide the level of protection required. Regardless, our clients appreciate knowing why every detector is at its location.

Activities in FGS Engineering:

  • Development of FGS Philosophy
  • Performance Target Selection
  • Detector Placement / Technology Assessment
  • Detector Mapping (Coverage) Assessment
  • FGS Functional Safety Assessment
  • FGS Requirements Specifications Development
  • Maintenance and Testing (Validation) Support

Performance Target Selection

Kenexis uses principles on performance-based design in fire and gas system design to ensure that the system is adequately designed to meet our clients’ needs. Performance-Based design of FGS has been proven to result in a cost-effective, safe design at lower overall installed costs from equivalent systems designed using solely prescriptive based methods.

Proper design of fire and gas systems begins with the selection of a performance target for functions employed by the fire and gas system. Performance of a FGS is primarily characterized by the systems ability to detect a hazards (detector coverage) and the systems ability to mitigate hazards (mitigation effectiveness). Determination of the necessary coverage, mitigation effectiveness requirements for a FGS is an exercise in risk analysis.

Kenexis is a world leader in the development of risk based techniques for determination of performance targets for safety critical systems such as FGS. Our consulting staff have backgrounds in process, control systems, and instrumentation engineering, all of which are critical disciplines for engineering a high-quality fire and gas system.

Detector Placement / Technology Assessment

A well designed fire and gas system is intended to detect and in some cases automatically mitigate fire, combustible gas and toxic gas hazards. Although national standards such as NFPA 72 address numerous aspects of good engineer practice for fire and gas systems, the standard does not prescribe in detail how to site fire and gas detector install in industrial process facilities, nor does it address the selection of appropriate detection technologies.

Proper placement of detectors is critical in the design of a fire and gas system to ensure that coverage is adequate to detect hazards at their incipient stage, before escalation makes mitigation actions ineffective on impractical. Kenexis engineers are experienced in the siting of fire and gas detector s in a variety of applications, including enclosed processes and offshore oil & gas. In addition, our advanced detector mapping software, Effigy™, allows Kenexis to verify that the initial detector layout is adequate to protect people, assets and the environment.

Selection of the improper detection technology can often lead to problems in the operation and maintenance of a fire and gas system. In many cases detectors are selected which are not suitable for the application, resulting in spurious alarms, excessive maintenance requirements, or ineffective detection of hazards. Kenexis ensures that the selected technology will not only meet performance requirements but also be appropriate for the application resulting in a safer design with reduced maintenance costs.

Detector Mapping Coverage Assessment

A detector mapping assessment seeks to determine the degree of fire and gas detector coverage with respect to a given area or specific hazards. For new fire and gas system designs, a mapping assessment is used to ensure that the proposed detector layout is capable of achieving the performance goals with respect to detection of fire and gas hazards. For existing fire and gas systems, a mapping assessment will ensure the adequacy of the system and/or validate assumptions made about it’s performance in previous risk assessments (e.g. QRA’s, Safety Cases, PHA/HAZOP).

For years fire and gas detector mapping was either not feasible (due to technology limitations) or considered unwarranted. Recent incidents, in which fire and gas systems failed to operate as intended, have proven that mapping assessments are not only warranted but has resulted in a paradigm shift in which performance-based design with fire and gas detector mapping is now considered best-practice in many industries.

Our advanced fire and gas detector mapping tool, Effigy™, allows Kenexis to provide cost-effective studies into fire and gas detector coverage.

FGS Functional Safety Assessment

Adequacy of system architecture and reliability of hardware in fire and gas systems is not always scrutinize in the same detail and other safety critical system (such as Safety Instrumented Systems). Since the introduction of performance-based standards for SIS design, statistics indicate that there has been a significant decrease in the number of dangerous failures of such systems. At Kenexis we believe that fire and gas systems, as safety critical systems, should be subject to the same level of functional safety assessment.

FGS Mapping Tools

Kenexis has developed advanced software tools which allow our expert consultants to execute reliability calculations more accurately and efficiently then our competition, providing our clients with superior results at a fraction of the price. Our proprietary equipment performance statistics database contains reliability statistics from numerous well known and industry specific sources, ensuring that our calculations are accurate, providing our clients with confidence in the design and performance of their fire and gas systems.

Click here for more information about our Fire & Gas Mapping tool, Effigy.

FGS Requirement Specification

All of the requirements developed during the risk analysis and conceptual design phases, and other safety critical requirements, need to be collected and presented in a document that can be used for subsequent detailed design engineering. Kenexis assists in the preparation of fire and gas system requirements specifications packages that ensure a sound design basis and provide a guideline for subsequent acceptance testing activities.

Kenexis consultants are experienced in the authoring of safety requirement specifications and ensure that the systems integrator is provided with an easy to follow detailed design document for implementation of the FGS while providing the end user with complete documentation of the design of basis.

Maintenance and Testing (Validation) Support

Ensuring the ongoing integrity of a fire and gas system throughout its lifecycle requires vigilant maintenance and testing practices that are in alignment with the risk analysis assumptions and requirements specifications. Kenexis helps its customers to meet their mechanical integrity requirements by developing test procedures for fire and gas systems, and assisting in the implementation of those tests.

Kenexis also helps to ensure good lifecycle performance by monitoring and tracking actual equipment performance against assumptions, and auditing system activity and changes to reconcile system performance and equipment changes against initial assumptions and specifications.

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