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3 tips to managing reactive gases

Gas detection systems installed for the safety of workers in an environment potentially exposed to reactive gases hold utmost importance for many industries. Reactive gases are not only important to monitor but also difficult to store, transport, and handle. These gases pose a host of dangers and critical life-threatening risks when working with and hence require special care.

What are reactive gases?

As compared to commonly used gases for industrial purposes, reactive gases are chemically more active. Their properties tend to change with a change in atmosphere and temperature and tend to react when in contact with certain materials. These gases, when used for gas detection and calibration purposes pose multiple risks to the operator handling the gas.

Here are 3 tips to help manage reactive gases safely for gas detection and calibration processes:

  1. Gas detection technologies: Gas detection systems, whether portable or otherwise, have a multitude of parts made with different materials. Some of these materials may react with the gas and affect the reading of the detection system. Ensure that the gas detection systems are up-to-date and maintained on a regular basis.
  2. Lifespan: Due to their natural properties, reactive gases often have a short shelf life ranging from 6-12 months in the industry. This makes supply and inventory management a difficult job. When handling reactive gases, it is best to enforce policies that mandate checking the dates on the gas cylinders and integrate supply chain with the vendors for streamlined inventory management.
  3. Gas handling equipment material:  Lastly, equipment used to handle the gas including the cylinder, valve, regulator, tubing, and more must not affect the gas quantity and quality as well as stay non-reactive. For this specific reason, reactive gases are stored and transported in aluminum gas cylinders. Similarly, SGI's regulators are also available in aluminum allowing use for reactive gases.

SGI's combination regulator, a one-of-a-kind regulator in the specialty gases industry that does not require any external valve fitting when used, also has aluminum parts allowing operators to not only use them for reactive gas based calibrations, but also avoid dangerous cross-contamination that happens during reuse.