Tag Archives: Hydrogen sulfide

Conoco and friends never warned you about those health hazards,did they?

 

4.2 Public Safety and Hazardous Materials August 2011 4.2-3 Conoco Phillips Santa Maria Refinery Throughput Increase DEIR
Oils are typically mixtures of many different compounds, most of which are hydrocarbons. There are a series of main hydrocarbon groups in petroleum. Saturates are hydrocarbons with straightchains of carbon atoms, while aromatics are hydrocarbons consisting of rings of carbon.Asphaltenes are complex polycyclic hydrocarbons that contain many complicated carbon ringsand nitrogen-, sulfur-, and oxygen-containing compounds.Sulfur in crude oil occurs in many natural compounds including hydrogen sulfide (H
2
S), a toxic gas that can cause injuries or fatalities if released to the atmosphere and subsequently inhaled.Total sulfur ranges from approximately one to four percent by weight in crude oils, while H
2
S concentrations can reach 100 parts per million (ppm) in “sour” crudes. Fortunately, its strong,pungent odor is detectable at a level substantially below that which causes adverse health effects.However, H
2
S also causes paralysis of the olfactory functions at levels below health effects.Other constituents of crude oil include nitrogen and oxygen compounds, as well as water- and metal-containing compounds, such as iron, vanadium, and nickel.The processed gas at the Refinery is used in processes at the Refinery. The majority of the gas is methane with some smaller amounts of ethane and butane and inert compounds (such as CO
2
).Produced gas presents hazards due to its flammability in the form of vapor cloud fires and explosions, and thermal radiation impacts due to flame jet fires emanating from a gas leak or rupture

 


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