Concentrations of Ammonia in the Vicinity of Vapor Releases
Concentrations of Ammonia in the Vicinity of Vapor Releases (1990)-Ammonia is well established as a refrigerant in the industrial refrigeration sector, having many favorable thermodynamic and physical properties which leads to its frequent choice for economic and operating advantages. But ammonia has one major drawback-the low concentration levels considered toxic. Releases of ammonia must, therefore, always be managed with care, not only for the protection of those within the plant but to protect the neighbors as well. The paper addresses one of the several situations in which ammonia might be released, namely, as a vapor from a pressure relief valve. The operator should be able to predict serious release situations and as a responsible corporate neighbor guard against them. A further benefit intended for data such as provided in this paper is to work with local officials in planning community responses to releases of ammonia. This paper presents magnitudes of ammonia concentrations at various distances under several different wind speeds for several different rates of release of ammonia vapor. The graphs were derived from runs made on a computer program that is widely used in environmental studies. The program has some important limitations, and the results cannot be considered authoritative for all situations. But the predicted magnitudes of ammonia concentration suggest that the vapor release problem may not be insurmountable. An important realization uncovered by the study is that concentrations can be reduced significantly by proper stack design. A high stack that directs the release vertically upward with a high velocity is particularly effective in reducing concentrations in the neighborhood.
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