Toxic Gas Monitoring System Best Practices – Thinking Beyond Simple Compliance

Belanger, Jim; Cox, John
(Jim Belanger, BDM , Kennebunk ME, John D. Cox, President ATS, Harvard MA . )

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Abstract Title: Toxic Gas Monitoring System Best Practices – Thinking Beyond Simple Compliance Toxic gas monitoring systems in the semiconductor industry and related high technology industries are required by local, state, and national Building and Fire Codes, as well as Corporate and insurance specifications. The interpretation of the codes and the application of corporate and insurance guidelines vary greatly from region to region. Many companies have installed toxic gas monitoring systems to meet code requirements or to satisfy their basic corporate guidelines. Not all companies follow the same protocols for design, installation, testing, and maintenance of a toxic gas monitoring system. The gases being monitored differ from company to company and even within the same companies sometimes differ from site to site. Details on where to monitor and the best locations to mount sampling points are often over looked by the installer of a new system. New requirements arise during the course of doing business that may require your system to be flexible to meet the ever changing needs of industry and/or government regulations. Gas monitoring technologies are also constantly being improved, enhanced, or changed completely to improve the system response, accuracy, or to meet lower maximum allowable threshold concentrations. Multiple sampling and analytical technologies may be required to meet the needs of an entire facility. A single-technology approach may not always be the most optimal approach for a toxic gas monitoring system. What happens when your TGMS goes into an alarm condition? What is the most effective way to ensure personnel safety and maintain facility uptime? Emergency response protocols are as important as the hardware and software to detect hazardous chemical leaks in semiconductor manufacturing facilities. Protocols include employee training, assigned emergency response teams (ERT), evacuations and hazardous equipment and processes shut down. Safety personnel must develop an ERT protocol that is most efficient and effective for their facility. A best practices approach to a toxic gas monitoring system beyond simple compliance will be discussed including gases to be monitored, proper sample point locations, multiple-technology approach, and alarm protocols to enhance the effectiveness of current and future toxic gas monitoring and control systems.

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