Uses of Ammonia

  • Used for commercial and domestic cleaning as a degreaser
  • Remains the coolant most used in industrial refrigeration systems to process and preserve most of the food and beverages. “Approximately 90% of industrial refrigeration systems for food are with ammonia refrigerant.”
  • As a fertilizer, it has sustained the feeding of billions of people
  • As an explosive, it is involved in the death of at least 150 million people. NH3 is oxidized and converted into nitric acid, the base of explosives such as ammonium nitrate, nitro glycerin and trinitroluene (TNT) “

For its effects on health and the risk of explosion.

Toxic effects of NH3 exposure:

Concentration             Effect0.

6 – 56 ppm                   Odor threshold

25 ppm                         8hr. TWA (time-weighted average)

35 ppm                         15 min. STEL (short-term exposure limits)

25 -50 ppm                 Eye and mucous membrane irritation (Tolerable for hours)

100 – 150 ppm            immediate throat irritation (tolerable 1 hour)

400 – 700 ppm          immediate severe irritation of the respiratory system and eye

>5000 ppm                Possibility of death due to suffocation or fluid in lungs

150,000 ppm              Explosive mixture

Know-How Dräger with regard to NH3?

•Factors to consider: ammonia is a very “sticky” gas and likes water

•Point monitoring: Through the use of local monitors, the need to use sampling lines is avoided, which in the case of ammonia, allows us to eliminate a series of problems and application care such as:

•If the sampling lines are exposed to temperature changes; for example: if they leave a cold room at room temperature, then humidity can affect, avoiding an accurate measurement.

•If filters are used at the end of the sampling lines, the ammonia will be trapped in them, which will prevent it from reaching the analyzer and an adequate measurement will be made.

•If there is dust in the sampling lines, it is difficult to carry out a measurement, as this is trapped in the mirrors of the IR bank and the sensor cannot “see”.

•How do we measure NH3 in the food industry?

•For personnel protection purposes we measure it based on its concentration in the environment

•Toxic gases are dangerous at low concentrations; and are usually characterized in terms of the Threshold Limit Value (TLV)

•TLV values ​​refer to the maximum allowed concentration in an average of 8 hours for an environmental pollutant.

•In areas of high concentration risk, it can also be measured based on its explosiveness in the environment

•The measurement range is usually: 0 – 100% LEL (LIE)

•For ammonia the values ​​of equivalence are:

0% LEL = 0% vol (0ppm)

100% LEL = 15% vol (150,000 ppm)

Thanks for your attention.