API SMART LEAK DETECTION
Smart Leak Detection and Repair (LDAR) for Control of Fugitive Emissions
|Publication Date:||1 June 2004|
This report presents technology background and test results on an improved Leak Detection and Control method for application in refineries and petrochemical plants. Smart Leak Detection and Repair (LDAR) focuses on locating and repairing the most significant leaking components, cheaper and more quickly than existing LDAR practices. A 1997 study of 11.5 million refinery components showed that over 90% of all-controllable fugitive emissions from refineries are from about 0.1% of all components. This result and statistical analyses show that a Smart LDAR program that focuses on finding and repairing this minority of high "leakers" could result in an improvement in environmental performance. Emerging optical imaging technologies enable adoption of a Smart LDAR program that targets significant leakers. Remote sensing and instantaneous detection capabilities of optical imaging technologies allow an operator to scan process areas containing tens to hundreds of potential leaks. The area being viewed is illuminated with infrared light that allows an image of chemical leaks to be viewed live. Significant leaks are identified immediately, allowing quicker repair, and ensuring efficient use of resources.
This report is organized in two sections:
• Section I - Studies Investigating an Alternative to Current Method 21, and
• Section II - Laboratory and Field Testing of optical imaging technologies
Section I - Studies Investigating an Alternative to Current Method 21
This Section describes studies and analyses undertaken to investigate alternative approaches to existing Leak Detection and Repair (LDAR) programs.