Hazardous Fluid Safety

WHA uses many of its industry-leading analysis tools and methods to analyze hazards in non-oxygen oxidizers, liquefied fuels, fuel gases, and compressed or cryogenic liquid “inerts.” Many of these fluids pose their own unique hazards in addition to more general pressure system hazards (including pressure vessel failures, explosions, BLEVEs, and catalytic reactions).

Non-Oxygen Oxidizers

WHA uses the same tools and methods described in the OFRA method for non-oxygen oxidizers. Particular consideration is given to the specific and inherent hazards of non-oxygen oxidizers including decomposition, violent oxidation, and toxicity. WHA’s hazard analyses are consistent with industry guidelines, standards, and codes as follows:

  • Nitrous Oxide (CGA G-8.1 and G-8.2, EIGA Doc. 116/07)
  • Nitrogen Trifluoride (CGA G-14, EIGA Doc 92/03)
  • Fluorine (CGAG-15 and EIGA Doc 140)
  • Ozone (CGA P-34)


WHA uses its modified OFRA analysis methods to evaluate and provide mitigation principles to address the unique handling, decomposition, reactivity and flammability hazards of reactive fluids and fuels.  The storage, handling and use of flammable, combustible, and reactive fluids are evaluated by WHA consistent with industry practices such as NFPA 30, Flammable and Combustible Liquids Code, and others suitable best-practice standards of care.

  • acetylene
  • propane
  • natural gas
  • synthesis gas
  • and others

Cryogenic Liquids and Compressed Inerts

WHA’s specialized OFRA and Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA) methods are uniquely capable of evaluating and mitigating hazards associated with cryogenic liquids, high-pressure compressed inert fluids, and the unique potential energy releases associated with these systems.  Though these systems often comprise inert liquids or gases, the potential energies for a failure can be substantial necessitating storage and handling consistent with industry guidance from CGA and best practices such as NFPA 55, Compressed Gases and Cryogenic Fluids Code.

  • nitrogen
  • argon
  • helium
  • and others

Failure Modes & Effects Analysis (FMEA)

Pressurized fluids of any kind are subject to common risks associated with the potential for large energy releases (blast) if the pressure containment is compromised or fails. A Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA) is an in-depth review that considers a system’s design and methodically identifies of all credible single-point failure modes (SPFs) and their potential effects on the system and its surroundings.

An FMEA is often required as part of a system-level or component-level OFRA to ensure that failure modes do not produce additional oxygen hazards.

The following are examples of common failures modes in pressure-system equipment for consideration based on component type:

  • Pressure Regulator: Fail Open, Fail Closed, Oscillates, External Leakage, Internal Leakage
  • Filter: Clogs, Passes Contaminants
  • Relief Valve, Burst Disc: External Leakage, Fail to Relieve, Fail Open
  • Check Valve: Fail Open, Fail Closed, External Leakage, Internal Leakage
  • Quick Disconnect: Fail to Separate, Separate Prematurely, Leak Before/After Disconnect
  • Manual Valve: Fail Open, Fail Closed, External Leakage, Internal Leakage
  • Pump: Fail On, Fail Off
  • Flow Meter: Erroneous High Indication, Erroneous Low Indication
  • Orifice: Clog
  • Flex Hose: External Leakage
  • Heat Exchanger: External Leakage, Internal Leakage

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