Publications

PDF icon“Relief Device Inlet Piping: Beyond the 3 Percent Rule”

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Publication: Hydrocarbon Processing
Authors: Dustin Smith, P.E., John Burgess, P.E., & Craig Powers, P.E.
Date: 2011

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“Good engineering practices (API STD 520 and ASME B&PV Code Section VIII) have long specified/required that inlet piping pressure drop from the vessel to the safety relief valve’s set pressure. Many companies have taken a more lenient approach to the inlet pressure loss limits; consequently, many installations do not meet the 3% design guideline, as the prevailing company logic assumed that existing installations were “safe” as long as the inlet losses were less than the safety relief device’s blowdown with some built-in safety margin. Up until recent fines by OSHA, there have been no hard and clear industry requirements or penalties for companies to adhere to the 3% inlet pressure loss rule. However, OSHA recently rejected this…”

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 PDF icon“Ensuring Safe Operations When Fulfilling Action Item Requirements”

Publication: Hydrocarbon Processing
Authors: Dustin Smith, P.E. & Jason White, P.E.
Date: 2010

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“The intent of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) process safety management (PSM) standard is to ensure the facilities operate in the safest possible manner. This includes the time between identifying a deficiency and resolving that deficiency. The tracking system required by the standard is intended to make sure necessary safety precautions are in place to ensure that the safest possible conditions exist until modifications can be made. A common mistake in action item tracking systems is the lack documentation for how the facility will operate safely until the change is implemented; but, in either case...”

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PDF icon“Snares to Lopa Action Items”

Publication: Process Safety Progress
Authors: Glenn Rozmus, Ph.D., P.E., Dustin Smith, P.E., & Dick Baum
Date: 2013

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“Greater numbers of action items are being generated from the LOPA process as it becomes increasingly utilized as a method for risk evaluation. The quantity and type of action items result from the combination of initiating events, conditional modifiers, and prescribed guidelines. The quality of the inputs determines whether the action items will provide any additional safety benefit. This paper is not a procedure for performing a LOPA analysis, but presents issues to be aware of when generating a list of initiating events, evaluation of the initiating event severities, and the influence of conditional modifiers.”

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PDF icon“Heat Integration and Relief Systems Design”

Publication: Process Safety Progress
Authors: Jason White, P.E., & Jason Spearow, P.E.
Date: 2013

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“The intent of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) process safety management (PSM) standard is to ensure the facilities operate in the safest possible manner. This includes the time between identifying a deficiency and resolving that deficiency. The tracking system required by the standard is intended to make sure necessary safety precautions are in place to ensure that the safest possible conditions exist until modifications can be made. A common mistake in action item tracking systems is the lack documentation for how the facility will operate safely until the change is implemented; but, in either case...”

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PDF icon“Safety Instrument Systems in Lieu of Pressure Relief Valves”

Publication: Hydrocarbon Processing
Authors: Dustin Smith, P.E.
Date: 2015

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“There are two aspects to risk assessments: safety issues and regulatory issues. Usually, the two are aligned, but not always. This article explains ASME B&PVC Section VIII (Sec VIII)1 requirements along with other industry guidance for overpressure risk mitigation. For most pressure vessels in petrochemical installations in the United States, the Sec VIII requirements are the regulatory requirements. A designer that is implementing facility changes from a corporate risk assessment (e.g. LOPA or HAZOP) would do well to also meet the minimum regulatory requirements for overpressure in Sec VIII. This article presents a review of the Sec VIII requirements for using Safety Instrumented Systems (SIS) in lieu of Pressure Relief Devices (PRD, e.g. Pressure Relief Valves or Rupture Disks). The reliability rating or determination of said rating (e.g. SIL-3 Systems) is outside the scope of this article.”

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