During inerting, the existing oxygen is displaced by a non-reactive gas until a non-ignitable mixture is present. It is necessary to distinguish between open and closed systems. For closed systems, e.g. reactors or tanks, inerting can be ensured by a slight overpressure; in the case of open systems, a continuous flow of inert gas and, if necessary, a measurement of the O2 concentration is required. During emergency inerting, inert gas is introduced into the object to be protected, e.g. a silo, in the event of elevated temperatures or carbon monoxide concentration.
Inerting measures are used in a variety of industries, as the following examples show:
- Chemical industry: Inerting tanks, tank farms, reactors or pipelines
- Pharmaceutical industry: Inerting reactors, dryers, tanks or raw material silos
- Petrochemical industry; Inerting tanks, reactors, pipelines, silos or bulk materials
- Biofuel: Inerting tanks, raw material silos or reactors
- Energy: Inerting fuel depots, tanks, pipelines, LNG-terminals or silos e.g. for wood pellets, dried sludge or coal
- Transport/Storage: Inerting tanks, pipelines, silos, tankers or ship holds
- Special applications: Inerting autoclaves for carbon fibre composites, ovens for the ceramics industry, tanks for native oils or drying
Advantages at a glance:
- Prevention of explosive atmospheres in apparatus
- Safe starting-up and shutting-down of plants
- Prevention of explosions during storage, transport and handling
- Protection of staff and equipment during maintenance work
- Protects sensitive materials from moisture and oxygen
Messer assists you in the design of the protective systems, taking into account the applicable standards and regulations, such as TRBF and ATEX. If necessary, the equipment and inert gas requirements can be optimised in advance using test equipment. Messer has extensive know-how in the inerting of open or closed systems with the aim of protecting products against oxidation as well as explosion protection. In addition, Messer supplies you reliably with the required gases.