MSA Launches FL500-Hydrogen Flame Detector

Process and plant engineers responsible for the safe use, production, or transport of hydrogen (H2) will find MSA’s new General Monitors FL500-H2 Flame Detector is specifically designed for the protection of oil/gas refineries, chemical plants, fuel stations, and other sites managing large volumes of the gas.

Hydrogen is a colorless, odorless, highly flammable gas that is compressed under pressure and stored in tanks for industrial usage.  If the gas escapes the tank holding it and is released into the air, the oxygen in the air makes it highly combustible and dangerous. The consequences of failing to detect leaking hydrogen can cause catastrophic plant accidents.

The FL500-H2 is an Ultraviolet/Infrared (UV/IR) flame detector designed specifically to detect hydrogen (H2) fires. The FL500-H2 sensors monitor optical radiation emitted by a hydrogen flame in both the ultraviolet (UV) and infrared (IR) spectral ranges while at the same time rejecting nuisance false alarm sources common within industrial job sites.

The detector’s flame sensing technology relies on the ultraviolet sensor to provide a quick response (<3 seconds) and the infrared detector monitors radiation emitted by a flame over a wide 130-degree field-of-view. UV/IR sensor technology offers increased immunity, operates at faster speeds, and is suited for both indoor and outdoor use.

The design of the FL500-H2 Detector features a compact footprint for ease of installation along with a rugged stainless-steel housing.  The easy-to-read display includes three LED indicators that show normal operation, fault condition, and an alarm.

The FL500-H2 provides a number of alarm signalling output options including instant and timed fire alarm relays, 4-20 mA analog output with HART, as well as RS-485 Modbus RTU.  The FL500-H2 also supports HART revision 7 and is fully FieldComm compliant.

For reliability and worry-free operation, the FL500-H2 Detector features an automated self-check of its optical path and electronic circuitry. Every two minutes, the detector’s built in self-check technology known as Continuous Optical Path Monitoring (COPM) performs an optical and electrical check. These self-check routines are designed to ensure the optical path is clear and the electronic circuitry is operational.

The FL500-H2 Optical Flame Detector addresses a wide range of application needs.  It is ideal for sites where large volumes of hydrogen are managed including: petroleum refineries, chemical plants (ammonia, ethylene), H2 gas generators, H2 fuel cell production, H2 fuel stations, H2 test facilities, rocket launch sites, and merchant H2 manufacturing plants.

The FL500-H2 comes with global agency approvals: CSA, ATEX, IECEx, and CE Marking.  Classifications include: Class I, Div 1, Groups B, C, D; Class II, Div 1, Groups E, F, G; Class III, Type 6P; Ex db IIC T5 Gb; Ex tb IIIC T100°C Db II 2 G D; and IP66/IP67.

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