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Function and purpose of gas detectors

Gas monitors quickly and accurately measure the concentration of gases in the air. They contain built-in sensors, which are often based on infrared technology or electrochemical principles. These sensors react very sensitively to the gases to be detected and show changes in concentration directly and reliably on a display.

Some devices also have an acoustic warning signal if increased concentrations of toxic or explosive gases or a reduced oxygen concentration in the room air can be measured.

What gases can be measured?

The range of gases that can be detected is very wide. Typically, oxygen detection is distinguished from the detection of explosive, toxic or combustible gases.

  • Oxygen (O2): Oxygen is the basis of all our metabolic processes, such as breathing. If there is too little oxygen in the air we breathe, there is a danger of suffocation.
  • Hydrogen (H2): Hydrogen is becoming increasingly important with new energy technologies. However, in combination with oxygen, it can very quickly lead to explosions.
  • Carbon oxides: Carbon dioxide (CO2) and the even more dangerous carbon monoxide (CO) are mainly produced during combustion processes. At elevated concentrations, both gases can interfere with breathing and even cause death.
  • Nitrogen gases: Nitrogenous gases, such as NO and NO2, play a major role in exhaust gases or, as amine compounds, are also by-products of organic reactions.
  • Sulphur compounds: Sulphur compounds are a common product of decomposition processes and occur, for example, in sewage plants and landfills. Typical representatives are H2S and SO2.
  • Hydrocarbons: Hydrocarbons can occur as organic vapours in the chemical industry or, like methane, also naturally.
  • Other dangerous gases include chlorine compounds, phosphorus compounds and the extremely toxic HCN.

Where are gas detectors used?

The presence of hazardous gases can play a role in many applications. For example, a gas detector can be useful in research and development, in industrial areas, for fire brigades and rescue teams, but also in mining, in tunnels and in underground channels.

Fire brigade

Whether in fires or in hazardous material incidents, gas detectors are an indispensable part of the equipment used by the fire brigade and other rescue services. The personal protection of firefighters and rescue workers is always in the foreground. Here, the measuring devices provide valuable services and warn in good time of the dangers of gases that may occur, for example, in fires or gas leaks.

Industrial applications

In many industries, employees can come into contact with dangerous gaseous substances, for example in the chemical industry or the oil and gas industry. Extreme temperatures and contact with toxic hazardous substances are also common in the metal and steel industries. In order to avoid incidents in refineries or chemical plants and to be able to act quickly in dangerous situations, gas detectors are irreplaceable.

Municipal supply

In the municipal supply of water, waste water or heating gas, the use of gas detectors is also indispensable for the protection of employees. Aggressive vapours and explosive gases can endanger the health of workers in sewage treatment plants, sewage systems or tanks. For example, many chlorine- and sulphur-based substances are produced in water treatment plants and must be detected in low concentrations at an early stage to prevent health hazards.

Underground spaces

Mining has a long tradition of using appropriate gas detection equipment to protect the lives of miners. In this environment, it is necessary to react quickly if the air being breathed contains dangerous gases or if oxygen is running low. In other underground spaces, such as wine cellars or other storage cellars, gas detectors can also ensure the safety of the employees working there.

Different types of gas detectors

There are tailor-made solutions for different applications. In general, a distinction is made between the local flexibility of the device (mobile versus stationary) and the technical flexibility (single or multiple gas devices). The types of gas detection devices available at MedSolut.com are presented in detail below.

Single-gas monitors

Single-gas monitors are designed to measure the concentration of a specific gas very specifically and sensitively. The devices then contain a special sensor that only responds to the gas to be detected. Typical applications are oxygen gas detectors, CO2 gas detectors or carbon monoxide detectors.

Multi-gas detector

Multi-gas detectors are usually more expensive than single-gas detectors, as they are suitable for the simultaneous detection of several gases. Therefore, the sensor system is more complex. The Dräger gas detector X-am 5600, for example, can reliably detect 1 to 6 toxic, flammable or explosive gases and is especially suitable for industrial use under the corresponding harsh environmental conditions.

Stationary instruments

Stationary meters are permanently installed in the appropriate locations and are used for continuous monitoring of an area. They can be designed for one or more gases. Typical applications are the monitoring of entire industrial plants or basements.

Mobile meters

Mobile meters are used when they are used as part of personal protective equipment or when they need to be very flexible in terms of location. The devices are light and handy and give the employee early warning of dangerous situations. Mobile devices such as the Dräger gas detector X-am 5000 are used, for example, in fire brigades or in mining.

Gas detectors from MedSolut.com our assortment

The range at MedSolut.com includes mainly mobile gas detectors exclusively from brand manufacturers, from single gas detectors to complex multi-gas detectors.

  • Dräger X-am(R) 5000This is a gas detector for 1 to 5 gases. It is handy and reliably detects combustible and toxic gases as well as oxygen.
  • Dräger X-am(R) 2500 FlexThis device is specially designed for use in potentially explosive atmospheres and is therefore particularly safe. It detects 1 to 4 different gas types.
  • Dräger X-am(R) 5600: This is a particularly ergonomic, robust and waterproof measuring device which can detect up to 6 gases.
  • Dräger X-dock(R): This series allows you to control all existing portable gas detectors with one station. With automatic gassing test and optimised calibration, your portable meters are always ready for use.

Maintenance, calibration and adjustment of a gas detector

To ensure that gas detectors function correctly and display the correct measured values, they must be regularly maintained, calibrated and, if necessary, readjusted. Details are regulated in the two standards DIN EN 60079-29-2 (explosive gases/vapours and oxygen) and DIN EN 45544-4 (toxic gases/vapours). The two leaflets T021 and T023 describe the procedure in detail.

The standards stipulate that portable equipment must be exposed to the gas to be tested before each shift in order to ensure functionality. In addition, devices for flammable gases must be calibrated every 4 months and devices for oxygen or toxic gases must be calibrated every 6 months . MedSolut.com’s team of experts will be happy to assist you in making the appropriate calibrations and adjustments.

Safety first: Order high quality gas detector from MedSolut.com!

You want to increase the safety of your laboratory or your equipment and have decided to buy a gas detector? Please contact us so that our expert advisors can provide you with competent and personal advice and help you to find the optimum device for your application.

You can reach us by phone at +49 30 2096579 00 or by e-mail at [email protected]