Consequence analysis for Safety of LNG-Receiving Terminal: Use of a Dispersion Model to Study Natural Gas Leakage and Motor Vehicle Movement in the Terminal

Open Access
An, Kwang Min
Graduate Program:
Petroleum and Mineral Engineering
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
Committee Members:
  • Jerry, Thesis Advisor
  • Joel B Haight, Thesis Advisor
  • natural gas leakage
  • vapor cloud model
  • flame arrester
The natural gas plant terminal considered in this study was built in 1996 for commercial operation. It has an area of about 1.4 km2, and there are 18 LNG storage tanks as of December 2007. The maximum production capacity is 3,690 t/h and 2,880,000 kl. This terminal ranks among one of the largest storage terminals in the world. The terminal plays a crucial role in providing fuel for the winter heating system for the whole country (Korea), and therefore, a sound safety management system is needed for its safe operation. Flame arresters are attached to every vehicle in the facility to prevent the ignition and the spreading of fire resulting from sparks generated at the muffler discharge. In this thesis, the necessity for flame arresters in vehicles operating in the terminal was investigated with a dispersion model. On the basis of the dispersion modeling results, it is confirmed that methane, even in flammable concentrations, was not likely to reach the parking lots and therefore the flame arresters were not needed in the vehicles. The worst-case model results indicate that methane vapor clouds with flammable concentrations of methane could get no closer than 163 m to the parking lots. Based on the dispersion model, it can be concluded that the distance between methane leakage and the vehicle was sufficient enough to prevent ignition and explosion.