We’re attending and presenting at Nordic Life Science Days from 14-15 September this year. Find out more about how gas detection is critical when managing a laboratory.
Did you know, just a small 1% leak of carbon dioxide (CO2) can cause drowsiness? Or that if one cylinder of nitrogen (N2) were to leak, the level of oxygen (O2) in the atmosphere could reduce by 25%?
If you work in a laboratory you’re more than likely going to store these gases.
CO2 is used in incubators as well as a lab gas in cryogenic applications, sample transportation and cell culture. Normal air contains a harmless level of CO2 (0.04%), but any leaks from concentrated sources may create a hazardous atmosphere.
Inert gases such as argon (Ar), helium (He), nitrogen (N2) or liquid nitrogen (LN2) are also used in laboratories to conduct experiments, in cryogenics and as carrier gases. These gases displace O2 in the atmosphere, and just a drop of 0.5% can start to cause harmful effects.
EH40 details the workplace exposure limit for CO2 is 0.5% (5000 ppm) for an eight hour long term exposure limit and 1.5% (15000 ppm) for a 15 minute short term exposure limit.
They also warn that there are substantial risks if the concentration of O2 in the atmosphere (20.9%) is reduced, and it is recommended that there is an alarm level at 19.5% to warn of a potential issue.
To help you mitigate risks, the European Industrial Gases Association (EIGA) publish safety papers and provide guidelines and advice for European companies to help them achieve the highest level of safety in relation to the manufacture, distribution, handling and application of gases.
If you are required to enter a confined space, The Confined Spaces Regulations 1997 states that a risk assessment must be carried out and a plan established on how to control the risks. It is recommended by HSE to test the air using a suitable gas monitor, as one of the risks the regulations highlight is the loss of consciousness or asphyxiation of any person at work arising from gas, fume, vapour or the lack of oxygen. Depending on where the confined space is situated or on the task being carried out, personal protective equipment (PPE) may be required to be worn. You must also have an evacuation plan in place so people can be rescued in the event of an emergency.
The Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007 was a landmark in legal history, as for the first time companies could be found guilty of corporate manslaughter as a result of a gross breach of a duty of care.
In July 2015, a farm manager from Blackmoor Estate, was convicted of manslaughter and jailed for two and a half years when two of his employees died after being encouraged to enter a nitrogen-filled apple storage unit which contained just 1% of O2.
The company were also fined £75,000 plus costs of £30,000 for serious breaches of health and safety legislation.
Analox pledge to improve safety and raise awareness of the gas risks and legislation that apply in a lab environment.
Come and see us at Nordic Life Science Days
We provide innovative lab products to keep people safe, and this year we will be exhibiting and speaking at the Nordic Life Science Days from 14 to 15 September.
The annual conference is being held at Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre in Sweden and Becca Dodds, Sales Manager Asia Pacific, Brazil & Northern Europe, and Simon Lunt, Sales and Marketing Director, will be exhibiting at Booth 20 during the event with a range of Analox’s gas monitoring products for oxygen (O2) and carbon dioxide (CO2) that will help prevent serious incidents in a laboratory and comply with applicable legislation.
These include the O2NE+, a fixed O2 depletion monitor ideal for use where there is a threat of a potential leak or build-up of an inert gas such as N2, Ar or He.
It has a long life O2 sensor, two low audio/visual alarms, easy to install, minimal maintenance, optional relays and 4-20mA.
In addition we will be showcasing the Ax60, a wall mountable CO2 detector with multiple location options for alarm and sensor units connected to a central display. It measures CO2 , has three alarm set points, including TWA, two built in relays and is low maintenance. One Ax60 system can have between 1 and 4 sensors and up to 8 alarms.
Becca will also be delivering a presentation at the event, Breathe Easy: How to reduce the risks associated with the use of gases in your lab. This will cover the legislation and guidance on atmosphere monitoring.
To arrange a meeting with Analox Sensor Technology at the Nordic Life Science Days, please call Becca on +44 (0) 1642 715950 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Author: Araminta Hartley, Content Writer
Founded in 1981, Analox Sensor Technology provides niche and custom gas detection solutions to industries including beverage and fast food, commercial diving and laboratories. Analox has over 325 years of collective, specialist electronics and software engineering expertise, as well as a worldwide distributor network. Contact us to see how we can provide expert gas monitoring solutions and help you achieve your goals.