Recent studies have shown that the hazards associated with loss of containment and BLEVEs (boiling liquid expanding vapor explosions) are strongly tied to the energy stored in the liquid phase of a pressure vessel. This stored energy is affected by heat transfer with the surroundings (e.g., fire exposure) and pressure relief valve (PRV) action. Since it would be desirable to minimize this stored energy to reduce hazards, a study was initiated by Transport Canada and Queen’s University to quantify the effect of various PRV parameters on the thermal energy storage of a pressure vessel. A fully automated state-of-the-art test facility has been constructed to perform 2-phase blowdown tests using steam and water. This paper describes the Queen’s University/Transport Canada PRV Test Program and the test procedures and facilities used. It goes on to show some preliminary results from 2-phase testing currently underway to determine the optimal PRV operating characteristics from a hazard mitigation standpoint. The results of this study may be useful for standards-writing bodies to set experimentally determined optimal behavior criteria for PRVs and acceptable tolerances for deviation from this.
Effects of Pressure Relief Valve Behavior on 2-Phase Energy Storage in a Pressure Vessel Exposed to Fire
Contributed by the Pressure Vessels and Piping Division and presented at the Pressure Vessels and Piping Conference (Joint w/ICPVT) Boston, Massachusetts, August 1–5, 1999, of the THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERS. Manuscript received by PVP Division, March 1, 1999; of revised, manuscript received May 22, 2001. Associate Editor: I. T. Kisisel.
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Pierorazio, A. J., and Birk, A. M. (May 1, 2002). "Effects of Pressure Relief Valve Behavior on 2-Phase Energy Storage in a Pressure Vessel Exposed to Fire ." ASME. J. Pressure Vessel Technol. May 2002; 124(2): 247–252. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.1390520
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