Industry Experience

worker check gas detection systemSemiconductor Manufacturing: Manufacturing semiconductor materials involves the use of highly toxic substances and flammable gas. Phosphorus, arsenic, boron and gallium are commonly used as doping agents. Hydrogen is used both as a reactant and a reducing atmosphere carrier gas. Etching and cleaning gases include HCl, Cl2, NF3 and other perfluoro compounds.

Typical Applications:

  • Wafer reactor
  • Wafer dryers
  • Gas cabinets
  • Chemical vapor deposition
Typical Gases:

  • Flammable: Hydrogen, Isopropyl Alcohol, Methane
  • Toxic: HCl, AsH3, BCl3, PH3, CO, Cl2, HF, O3, H2Cl2Si, TEOS, C4F6, C5F8, GeH4, NH3, NO2 and O2
  • Deficiency: Nitrogen
  • Pyrophoric: Silane

Solar Manufacturing: Research and Development for the future manufacturing of solar panels utilizes many differing materials which are often processed using highly toxic substances and flammable gases. Phosphorus, arsenic, boron and gallium are currently commonly used as doping agents. Hydrogen is used both as a reactant and a reducing atmosphere carrier gas. Etching and cleaning gases include HCl, Cl2, HF and NH3. Research and Development labs are constantly stretching the limits of current manufacturing methods and experiment with the use of different exotic and toxic materials.

Typical Applications:

  • Silicon reactors
  • Wafer dopant tools
  • Gas cabinets
  • Chemical vapor deposition
  • Acid gas and liquid reactant tools
Typical Gases:

  • Flammable: Hydrogen, Isopropyl Alcohol, Methane
  • Toxic: HCl, AsH3, BCl3, PH3, CO, Cl2, HF, O3, H2Cl2Si, TEOS, C4F6, C5F8, GeH4, NH3, NO2, H2S
  • O2 Deficiency: Nitrogen
  • Pyrophoric: Silane

University Research Laboratories: University Labs vary from college to college and do quite of bit of research and development requiring the use of toxic and flammable gases. The labs are similar to semiconductor type facilities and use a lot of the same gases. Gas detection is used to provide personal safety and the controls are there to mitigate the hazards before there are harmful levels.

Typical Applications:

  • Fume hoods
  • Bench top experiments
  • Gas cabinets
  • Semiconductor tools
Typical Gases:

  • Flammable: Hydrogen, Isopropyl Alcohol, Methane
  • Toxic: HCl, AsH3, BCl3, PH3, CO, Cl2, HF, O3, H2Cl2Si, TEOS, C4F6, C5F8, GeH4, NH3, O2
  • Deficiency: Nitrogen
  • Pyrophoric: Silane

Landfills and Commercial Buildings on Landfill: Landfill gas is generated by the anaerobic decomposition of organic refuse deposited in landfills. Landfill gas consists primarily of methane and carbon dioxide. As our cities become more populated we are forced to use land once used for municipal landfills. This has caused many documented events showing the collection of methane in buildings through the sub-foundation and potentially creating a flammable environment. Gas detection is used to activate building controls, including industrial fans that pull atmosphere from the sub-foundation and evacuate through the building rooftop, therefore mitigating the intrusion into the building.

Typical Applications:

  • Interior enclosed rooms in the structure
  • Parking garage enclosed rooms
  • Utility vaults
  • Elevator shafts
Typical Gases:

  • Flammable: Methane
  • Toxic: Carbon Dioxide

Chemical Plants: Probably one of the largest users of gas detection equipment is Chemical Plants. They often use a wide range of both flammable and toxic gases in their manufacturing processes or create them as by-products of the processes.

Typical Applications:

  • Raw material storage
  • Process areas
  • Laboratories
  • Pump rows
  • Compressor stations
  • Loading/unloading areas
Typical Gases:

  • Flammable: General Hydrocarbons
  • Toxic: Various including Hydrogen Sulfide, Hydrogen Fluoride and Ammonia

Waste Water Treatment Plants: Waste Water Treatment Plants are a familiar site around many cities and towns.

Sewage naturally gives off both Methane and H2S. The ‘rotten eggs’ smell of H2S can often be noticed as the nose can detect it at less than 0.1ppm.

Typical Applications:

  • Digesters
  • Plant sumps
  • H2S Scrubbers
  • Pumps
Typical Gases:

  • Flammable: Methane, Solvent vapors
  • Toxic: Hydrogen Sulfide, Carbon Dioxide, Chlorine, Sulfur Dioxide, Ozone

Boiler/Chiller Rooms: Boiler and Chiller Rooms come in all shapes and sizes. Small buildings may have a single boiler and chiller whereas larger buildings often have large mechanical rooms housing several large boilers and chillers.

Typical Applications:

  • Flammable gas leaks from the incoming gas main
  • Leaks from the boiler and surrounding gas piping
  • Carbon Monoxide given off badly maintained boiler
  • Refrigerant leaks from the chiller
Typical Gases:

  • Flammable: Methane
  • Toxic: Carbon Monoxide, Ammonia
  • Asphyxiant: Refrigerants

Tunnels/Car Parks: Car Tunnels and enclosed Car Parks need to be monitored for the toxic gases from exhaust fumes. Modern tunnels and car parks use this monitoring to control the ventilation fans. Tunnels may also need to be monitored for the buildup of natural gas.

Typical Applications:

  • Car tunnels
  • Underground and enclosed car parks
  • Access tunnels
  • Ventilation control
Typical Gases:

  • Flammable: Methane (natural gas), LPG, LNG, Petrol Vapor.
  • Toxic: Carbon Monoxide, Nitrogen Dioxide

Sensitive Receptor Occupancies: Let’s face it we use, dispense and store flammable, toxic and asphyxiates gases in our communities. To further protect segments of our society which are most susceptible to influences from toxic materials. City Planning is now identifying Sensitive Receptor Occupancies during the Permit Process for new developments or TI work. Gas detection is being used as an exposure prevention mechanism by alarming occupant to shelter in place. The gas detection system is integrated into the building control systems to prevent the incursion of gas.

Typical Applications:

  • Schools
  • Churches
  • Hospital’s
  • Retirement Homes
  • Child Activity Centers
Typical Gases:

  • Toxic: Depends on surrounding storage and use facilities and is determined by the local jurisdiction after a risk assessment has been performed.