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AS 39612005

Australian Standard
AS 39612005

The storage and handling of liquefied natural gas

This Australian Standard was prepared by Committee ME-070, Liquefied Natural GasStorage and Handling. It was approved on behalf of the Council of Standards Australia on 14 March 2005. This Standard was published on 13 April 2005.

The following are represented on Committee ME-070: Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Department of Employment, Education and Training, N.T. The Australian Gas Association
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AS 39612005

Australian Standard
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The storage and handling of liquefied natural gas

Originated as AS 39611991. Second edition 2005.

COPYRIGHT Standards Australia All rights are reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or copied in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, without the written permission of the publisher. Published by Standards Australia, GPO Box 5420, Sydney, NSW 2001, Australia ISBN 0 7337 6616 1

AS 39612005

PREFACE
This Standard was prepared by the Standards Australia Committee ME-070, Liquefied Natural GasStorage and Handling in response to requests from authorities and industries to review and supersede AS 39611991. The objective of this Standard is to provide requirements for the design, construction and operation of installations for the storage and handling of liquefied natural gas (LNG), covering installations of atmospheric-type tanks for supplying marine terminals, pipeline peak saving, and pressure tanks. This edition is technically equivalent to that published in 1991. However, referenced documents have been revised and updated, and minor editorial changes have been made to reflect the style of more recent Australian Standards for the storage and handling of dangerous goods. This Standard has been modelled on two other Australian Standards. AS/NZS 1596, The storage and handling of LP Gas, was used because of the similarities between LP Gas and LNG. AS 1940, The storage and handling of flammable and combustible liquids, was also used, as atmospheric LNG storage has similarities with flammable liquids storage. Expertise from the cryogenics industry has also been valuable. Liquefied natural gas has many unique properties requiring specific safety measures. This Standard is therefore based on an amalgamation of requirements drawn from various sources, but tailored to suit the particular safety issues of LNG. The Standard has been arranged to cater for the distinctions between the two basic types of LNG storage and handling systems, being pressure tanks and road or rail tankers, and atmospheric tanks for marine and pipeline transport systems. The terms normative and informative have been used in this Standard to define the application of the appendix to which they apply. A normative appendix is an integral part of a Standard, whereas an informative appendix provides information and guidance only. The series of Standards covering the storage and handling of dangerous goods presently comprises the following Standards: AS 1894 The storage and handling of non-flammable cryogenic and refrigerated liquids 1940 The storage and handling of flammable and combustible liquids 2507 The storage and handling of agricultural and veterinary chemicals 2714 The storage and handling of hazardous chemical materialsClass 5.2 substances (organic peroxides) 3780 The storage and handling of corrosive substances 3846 The handling and transport of dangerous cargoes in port areas 4326 The storage and handling of oxidizing agents 4332 The storage and handling of gases in cylinders AS/NZS 1596 The storage and handling of LP Gas 2022 Anhydrous ammoniaStorage and handling 2927 The storage and handling of liquefied chlorine gas

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AS 39612005

AS/NZS 3833 The storage and handling of mixed classes of dangerous goods in packages and intermediate bulk containers 4081 The storage and handling of liquid and liquefied polyfunctional isocyanates 4452 The storage and handling of toxic substances 4681 The storage and handling of Class 9 (miscellaneous) dangerous goods and articles

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AS 39612005

CONTENTS
Page FOREWORD.............................................................................................................................. 6 SECTION 1 SCOPE AND GENERAL 1.1 SCOPE AND APPLICATION..................................................................................... 9 1.2 REFERENCED DOCUMENTS .................................................................................. 9 1.3 DEFINITIONS ............................................................................................................ 9 SECTION 2 GENERAL INSTALLATION REQUIREMENTS 2.1 SCOPE OF SECTION ............................................................................................... 13 2.2 TANKS...................................................................................................................... 13 2.3 PRESSURE AND VACUUM RELIEF ..................................................................... 13 2.4 GAUGES AND CONTROLS .................................................................................... 14 2.5 PLANT EMERGENCY SHUTDOWN SYSTEMS ................................................... 15 2.6 LOCATIONS............................................................................................................. 16 2.7 POTENTIAL FLAME IMPINGEMENT ................................................................... 20 2.8 ROAD AND RAIL TANKER TRANSFER INSTALLATIONS ............................... 20 2.9 PIPING, VALVES AND ACCESSORIES................................................................. 22 2.10 INSULATION ........................................................................................................... 24 2.11 VAPORIZER DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION ..................................................... 24 2.12 VAPORIZER INSTALLATION................................................................................ 25 2.13 PUMPS AND COMPRESSORS................................................................................ 25 2.14 SECURITY AND DAMAGE PROTECTION ........................................................... 27 2.15 EARTHING AND BONDING .................................................................................. 27 2.16 PERSONNEL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT ............................................................ 27 2.17 LADDERS, STEPS, AND PLATFORMS ................................................................. 28 2.18 ODORIZERS............................................................................................................. 28 2.19 MARKINGS AND NOTICES ................................................................................... 28 2.20 LIGHTING ................................................................................................................ 28 SECTION 3 PRESSURE TANK STORAGES 3.1 SCOPE OF SECTION ............................................................................................... 29 3.2 TANK DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION ................................................................ 29 3.3 CONTROLS AND GAUGES .................................................................................... 29 3.4 LOCATION AND INSTALLATION ........................................................................ 30 SECTION 4 ATMOSPHERIC TANK STORAGES 4.1 SCOPE OF SECTION ............................................................................................... 32 4.2 TANK DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION ................................................................ 32 4.3 GAUGES AND CONTROLS .................................................................................... 32 4.4 LOCATION AND INSTALLATION ........................................................................ 33 4.5 SPILLAGE CONTAINMENT AND CONTROL ...................................................... 33 4.6 MARINE TRANSFER INSTALLATIONS ............................................................... 35

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AS 39612005

Page SECTION 5 AUTOMOTIVE REFUELLING STATIONS 5.1 SCOPE OF SECTION ............................................................................................... 37 5.2 CONTROL OF IGNITION SOURCES ..................................................................... 37 5.3 TANK AND PIPING ................................................................................................. 37 5.4 FILLING AREA ........................................................................................................ 37 5.5 DISPENSERS............................................................................................................ 38 5.6 NOTICES, SIGNS, AND INSTRUCTIONS.............................................................. 38 SECTION 6 OPERATIONS 6.1 SCOPE OF SECTION ............................................................................................... 40 6.2 ESTABLISHMENT OF PROCEDURES .................................................................. 40 6.3 SUPERVISION ......................................................................................................... 43 6.4 RECORDS................................................................................................................. 43 6.5 COMPLIANCE WITH PROCEDURES .................................................................... 43 6.6 SPECIFIC OPERATING PROCEDURES................................................................. 43 6.7 MAINTENANCE, INSPECTION AND TESTING ................................................... 44 6.8 TANK TRANSPORT OR REMOVAL...................................................................... 47 6.9 ROAD TANKER OPERATION ................................................................................ 47 6.10 GENERAL PRECAUTIONS FOR BULK TRANSFER ............................................ 48 6.11 SUPERVISION OF TRANSFER............................................................................... 49 6.12 TRANSFER PROCEDURES .................................................................................... 50 6.13 MARINE TRANSFER .............................................................................................. 51 6.14 AUTOMOTIVE-REFUELLING STATION OPERATIONS..................................... 51 SECTION 7 FIRE SAFETY 7.1 SCOPE OF SECTION ............................................................................................... 52 7.2 DESIGN REQUIREMENTS ..................................................................................... 52 7.3 DETAILED REQUIREMENTS ................................................................................ 53 APPENDICES A LIST OF REFERENCED DOCUMENTS ................................................................. 56 B METHOD FOR THE DETERMINATION OF HOLDING TIME............................. 58 C CHARACTERISTICS OF LNG ................................................................................ 60 D TANK AND CYLINDER LOCATIONS................................................................... 62 E HAZARDOUS ZONES ............................................................................................. 63 F TRANSFER CONNECTION..................................................................................... 65 G MAXIMUM FILLING LEVEL OF PRESSURE TANKS ......................................... 66 H NOTICE OF EMERGENCY PROCEDURES FOR LNG.......................................... 67 I TYPICAL EXAMPLE OF WORK PERMIT............................................................. 68

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AS 39612005

FOREWORD
FIRE SAFETY General considerations Fire safety is a critical aspect of any Standard that deals with the safe handling of flammable materials, and such a Standard usually incorporates a comprehensive section that requires the traditional firefighting implements, e.g. hoses, hydrants, extinguishers, and the like. Habit and instinct tend to lead the thinking towards the provision of the same equipment for LNG, on the grounds that if a fire is possible, one must provide means for fighting it, and this is the way it is done. However, the fire characteristics of gases, particularly LNG, differ radically from those of solids and liquids, so that conventional firefighting methods and equipment are not often useful and can in some situations be counter-productive. The provision of inappropriate equipment not only represents a misdirection of effort, but more seriously a false sense of security can be generated, leading personnel to place themselves in danger. Essential to the consideration of safety in a gaseous fire is that uncontrolled drifting vapour is very mobile; unlike liquids or solids it may travel to an ignition source. Once gas has escaped, dissipation before reaching an ignition source is the only hope of safety. Separation distances, and the control and elimination of possible ignition sources, are aimed at this aspect. If escaped gas ignites, there are two problems. Water streams will not readily extinguish such a fire, and in any case to extinguish the flame while leaving the escape flowing sets up a very considerable risk of potential re-ignition. The only satisfactory means of stopping a gaseous fire is to shut off the fuel supply, so the design must incorporate sufficient isolating facilities to cope with any predictable event. However such facilities merely represent a cure after the event, and the principal objective must be prevention, i.e. the intent should be that escapes never happen and the escapecontrol measures never have to be used. Thus the engineering of the whole installation becomes the critical fire safety provision. The first precautionary element in the design is the engineering of all the components to minimize the possibility that any failure may lead to an escape. The next element is a system of valves to control all outflow of LNG (whether liquid or vapour). These valves should be capable of shutting off flow, preferably automatically, should an incident occur. Catchments are provided for certain types of tank to hold any possible spillage of liquid. Any substantial spill of liquid will form a pool, but the liquid has a fairly high evaporation rate, so that it is desirable to keep the surface area of the pool as small as possible to minimize the rate of vapour generation. It is traditional to spread foam on petrol spillages to blanket the surface and inhibit evaporation, thus reducing the vapour cloud and reducing the possibility of ignition. Foam is not as effective on LNG, because of the interface between the warm foam and the cryogenic LNG, increasing evaporation and breaking through the foam. Thus a further reason for keeping the surface areas of spillage catchments as small as possible is to optimize the thickness of the foam blanket, so that the barrier to heat radiated into the pool, and the general insulating effect on the pool, is as effective as possible. Should a compound catch fire, little can be done to fight it. Foam is ineffective and water streams will increase the problem by increasing the evaporation rate. All that can be done is protect nearby installations and property from the high level of radiated heat.

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AS 39612005

Nearby fires that radiate heat are not important considerations for LNG tanks. The separation requirements ensure that the radiation levels at the outer tank surface are reasonable, and the insulation of the tank will be adequate protection for anything but the most intense fire, active for a prolonged period. Accidental on-site fires can be dealt with in the main by conventional firefighting methods, and are not likely to last long enough to present any threat to a tank. Only tank support structures have any degree of vulnerability to weakening by heat. Therefore, this Standard makes little provision for protection from accidental heat from incidental nearby fires. Engineering for fire safety The general principles of containment of contents apply equally to both pressure and atmospheric tanks, but there are differences in detail that require different approaches. Pressure tanks are of small volume, but can have quite high pressures. Atmospheric tanks have very large volumes at lower pressures.
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Pressure tanks Pressure tanks are not considered to be a major potential for liquid loss, because of the relative thickness of the shell, and are considered more likely to suffer an outflow of liquid due to the downstream failure of some component, possibly due to accident. The engineering of the containment provisions has as its objective the elimination of any such downstream escape by the application of the following principles: (a) (b) (c) An escape of liquid is more serious than an escape of vapour. Openings into a tank should not be more numerous, nor larger, than they need to be. Every opening above a stated minimum size should have double protection, the inboard member being at least a manual shut-off valve, with either an excess flow valve or a non-return valve mounted outboard of that. Non-return valves are used preferentially wherever they can be used and are mandatory in every one-way liquid filling entry. The reason for this preference is that a non-return valve will shut in any condition of backflow, whereas an excess flow valve will shut only in specific outflow conditions. Where a non-return valve is used, the manual valve inboard of it is considered to be adequate back-up. Where an excess flow valve is unavoidable, the inboard manual valve is not alone adequate, and must be supported by an emergency shutdown system, or for smaller tanks at least a remote operating control of some sort. Careful thought must be given in the design stage to ensure that any filling or withdrawal connection, shear point, screwed or flanged connection, or other feature to which flame could flash in the event of a fire, is located and directed to avoid flame impingement. Pipework should be designed to minimize the number of flanges and joints. Water sprays and sprinkler systems have little place and cannot be substituted for protective valving. Site management has a continuing responsibility to ensure that training, operating, and maintenance procedures are set up in the first place, are implemented, and are not subsequently allowed to lapse or become outdated. A certain basic level of firefighting equipment is required for all but the most minor installations, to cope with the unpredictable.

(d)

(e) (f)

(g)

(h) (i)

(j)

AS 39612005

Atmospheric tanks Atmospheric tanks are considered to have a higher need for protection from possible spills, partly because of field construction uncertainties, and thinner shells, and partly because the very high volume stored warrants more caution. The main principles are as follows: (a) (b) No openings are permitted through the shell below the maximum liquid level in the tank. Liquid is pumped over the top. Excess flow valves and check valves have little place in such arrangements, and any downstream escape is terminated by an emergency shutdown system that controls the pumps. Some provision is necessary to prevent siphoning after a pump shuts off. Separations are chosen on the basis of a design liquid spill of 10 min duration. The compound around the tank is designed to minimize the possible surface area of any spill, so that compounds for LNG tanks tend to be narrow and deep, and commonly consist of only an outer shell. The entire design of the installation, its control systems, valves, emergency shutdown provisions, sensing and monitoring devices, is considered to be an individual engineering exercise for that particular plant, carried out in conjunction with a risk assessment. It is for this reason that the Standard says little about the detail of such installations.

(c) (d)
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(e)

Treatment of emergencies The requirements of this Standard have been devised on the basis of a definite concept as to the handling of a fire emergency involving LNG storages, the elements of which are as follows: (a) (b) Rapid evaluation of the nature of the fire is imperative. If the fire is in adjacent buildings or materials, and is of normal intensity and duration, then it can be taken that the tank will be unaffected and attention can be concentrated on fighting that fire. If LNG or gas is escaping, the priority task is to prevent escalation, then to stabilize, then to terminate. The major objective is to shut off the flow of the escaping LNG. If a gas fire is burning but the situation is stable, there is nothing wrong with letting the gas burn if it can do no harm, even to the extent of burning off all the stored gas if this is the safest thing to do. If the situation is obviously escalating, and the fuel flow to the fire cannot be stopped, then the emergency teams must be evacuated.

(c) (d)

(e)

AS 39612005

STANDARDS AUSTRALIA Australian Standard The storage and handling of liquefied natural gas

SECT ION

SCOPE

AND

GENERA L

1.1 SCOPE AND APPLICATION 1.1.1 Scope


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This Standard specifies requirements for the design, construction and operation of installations for the storage and handling of liquefied natural gas (LNG). 1.1.2 Application This Standard applies to two basic types of installation, being (a) (b) installations of atmospheric tanks for supplying marine tanker terminals, pipeline peaking, and the like; and pressure tanks, which are usually a part of a distribution system for LNG by road tanker.

1.1.3 Where this Standard does not apply This Standard does not apply to or deal with (a) (b) (c) the functional design of liquefaction equipment; frozen-ground storage techniques; aspects of natural gas distribution and use that are covered by other Standards and publications such as pipeline and reticulation codes, appliance and vehicle installation codes, and the like; any transport operations that are covered by the ADG Code; the transport of LNG by ship; or any aspect of transport or piped distribution outside the perimeter of the static storage installation. REFERENCED DOCUMENTS

(d) (e) (f)

1.2

A list of documents referred to in this Standard is given in Appendix A. 1.3 DEFINITIONS For the purpose of this Standard, the definitions below apply. 1.3.1 ADG Code The Australian Code for the Transport of Dangerous Goods by Road and Rail. 1.3.2 Atmospheric tank A tank which operates at a nominal vapour pressure not exceeding 100 kPa. 1.3.3 Automotive refuelling station A place where vehicle fuel tanks are filled from dispensers while on the vehicle.
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AS 3961-2005, The storage and handling of liquefied natural gas


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