Most major bulk storage operators have a wealth of experience handling multiple fuels types such as Diesel, Kerosene and Petrol. However, the increasing use of various mixtures of ethanol, and particularly E100 (pure hydrous ethanol) – can catch operators off-guard. Whilst fuel mixtures of <90% anhydrous ethanol mixtures in the E5 to E90m range fall into Explosion Gas Group IIA, any ethanol mixture that exceeds 90% such as E95 or E100 falls into Explosion Gas Group IIB1 and that requires a different Flame Arrester.
To overcome this issue Elmac Technologies has developed a range of In-line Unstable Detonation Arresters, tested for explosions groups IIA, IIB1, IIB2 & IIB3, that not only provide the desired protection but also offer improved flow rates and lower pressure drop performance when compared to the industry norm offering energy cost reductions of up to 30%.
Elmac’s Detonation Flame Arresters are designed to prevent the propagation of Flames in worst-case gas and vapour explosion scenarios without significantly compromising flow rates or pressure drops. Creating a product to fit this criteria was the challenge set to Elmac’s New Product Development team. They used sophisticated Computational Fluid Dynamics software to design the unique product range, the performance of which has been verified both independently, to ATEX standards, and by using the company’s state-of-the-art in-house test facilities. The range incorporates their best-in-class E-FlowTM element design, which optimises flow and reduces fouling and clogging, resulting in simplified maintenance and significant operating and lifetime cost reductions.
The integral orifice plate technology in the patent protected High Energy Dissipation System (HEDSTM) serves to dissipate heat and attenuate the destructive effects of the shock and pressure waves whilst effectively diluting the combustion products. These characteristics deliver higher rates of flow at lower pressure drops resulting in significant reductions in energy costs. The features, which also include removable elements, facilitate smaller sized equipment and reduced weight for the same flow, leading to simpler installation.
Kevin Wheeldon, Sales Manager at Elmac Technologies, said: “We have recently noticed a considerable number of applications where IIA Flame Arresters have been fitted in vapour recovery systems, where the client is back loading the trucks with 98% ethanol, which is explosion group IIB1.”
He continued “With the move towards Flex Fuel Vehicles and clients requiring the flexibility to store and distribute multiple fuel mixtures such as E100, it is essential that storage companies protect their assets by selecting the correctly specified Flame Arrester for their products.”