Typical Ammonia Plume

The French National Institute for Industrial Environment and Risks (INERIS) conducted a study to examine how anhydrous ammonia would behave under a number of different release sceanrios. The main aims of this study were:

  1. to analyse the risks represented by facilities using quantities of ammonia of up to a few dozen tonnes
  2. to complete knowledge on the atmospheric dispersion of ammonia in open and obstructed environments, and
  3. to compare the test results with atmospheric dispersion models

The purpose of this test campaign was to measure the ammonia concentrations leeward from the release in order to obtain a clearer idea on the dispersion of ammonia in the atmosphere in the case of realistic releases, particularly in open or semi-obstructed environments. 

The discharges were released from a 6-ton storage tank of pressurised liquid ammonia and through a discharge device with an outlet diameter of 2 inches. Fifteen trials were carried out with various release configurations corresponding to industrial situations (impinging jets on the ground and on a wall at various distances, release through a flange without seal, etc.). The quantity of ammonia discharged from the liquid phase varied according to the tests, from 1.4 ton to 3.5 tons for durations between 7 and 14 minutes and, therefore, at flow rates between 2 and 4.5 kg/s. Approximately 200 sensors were st up downwind to measure ammonia concentrations and temperature in the plume. These tests showed that for discharges with identical flow rates the distances corresponding to the same concentration vary a lot according to the configurations. These distances tend to be reduced by the presence of obstacles or bounds that collected liquid ammonia.

CLICK HERE for this study. 

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