Inherent occupational health assessment in chemical process development and design

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Aalto-yliopiston teknillinen korkeakoulu | Doctoral thesis (article-based)
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Date
2010
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Degree programme
Language
en
Pages
Verkkokirja (526 KB, 91 s.)
Series
Plant design report series, 96
Abstract
Sustainability is now a necessity to process industry. Therefore the safety, health, and environmental (SHE) evaluations are required in process design and operation. Various methods for assessing safety and environmental friendliness have been presented in literature. However, occupational health evaluations have received much less attention even though each year more people die from work-related diseases than are killed in industrial accidents. Inherent occupational health assessment is an approach to reduce hazards by choosing healthier chemicals and process concepts. I.e. inherent occupational health relies on the healthier and safer properties of chemical substances, process conditions, operations, and work procedures in a process. This thesis presents new systematic approaches for evaluating inherent occupational health of chemical processes in process development and design. In the R&D stage, the Inherent Occupational Health Index (IOHI) is proposed based on healthier and safer reaction chemistries, properties of compounds present, and process conditions such as pressure, volatility, exposure limits, and temperature etc. In the preliminary design stage, chronic health risk is calculated due to exposure to fugitive airborne emissions based on flow sheet data and precalculated process modules' emission, estimated process plot areas, and wind velocities. Health Quotient Index (HQI) is used as a health indicator to compare the estimated chemical concentrations to their exposure limits. In the basic engineering stage, the Occupational Health Index (OHI) utilizes detailed fugitive emission calculations based on piping and instrumentation diagrams. The method evaluates quantitatively chronic inhalation risks to noncarcinogens and carcinogens, acute inhalation risk, and qualitatively dermal/eye risk. For fugitive exposure estimation new methods were developed. Three approaches for estimating chemical concentration due to fugitive emissions are proposed based on simple PFD, detailed PFD, and PID, which were tested on the actual Borealis Polymers plant in Porvoo. A more realistic approach was developed for estimating health risks of fugitive occupational exposure by using statistical meteorological data. Finally the integration of the inherent occupational assessment methods with the existing computer aided design tools was studied. Also the correlation between index-based SHE assessment techniques was analyzed to find out, if any interdependency exists between SHE characteristics at the inherent level.
Description
Supervising professor
Hurme, Markku, Prof.
Keywords
inherent occupational health, process development, process design, inhalative exposure, fugitive emission, health risk, index method
Other note
Parts
  • [Publication 1]: M. H. Hassim and D. W. Edwards. 2006. Development of a methodology for assessing inherent occupational health hazards. Process Safety and Environmental Protection, volume 84, number B5, pages 378-390. © 2006 Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE). By permission.
  • [Publication 2]: M. H. Hassim and M. Hurme. 2010. Inherent occupational health assessment during process research and development stage. Journal of Loss Prevention in the Process Industries, volume 23, number 1, pages 127-138. © 2009 Elsevier Science. By permission.
  • [Publication 3]: Mimi H. Hassim and Markku Hurme. 2010. Inherent occupational health assessment during preliminary design stage. Journal of Loss Prevention in the Process Industries, volume 23, number 3, pages 476-482. © 2009 Elsevier Science. By permission.
  • [Publication 4]: Mimi H. Hassim and Markku Hurme. 2010. Inherent occupational health assessment during basic engineering stage. Journal of Loss Prevention in the Process Industries, volume 23, number 2, pages 260-268. © 2009 Elsevier Science. By permission.
  • [Publication 5]: Mimi H. Hassim, Alberto L. Pérez, and Markku Hurme. 2010. Estimation of chemical concentration due to fugitive emissions during chemical process design. Process Safety and Environmental Protection, volume 88, number 3, pages 173-184. © 2010 Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE). By permission.
  • [Publication 6]: Mimi H. Hassim and Markku Hurme. 2010. Occupational chemical exposure and risk estimation in process development and design. Process Safety and Environmental Protection, volume 88, number 4, pages 225-235. © 2010 Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE). By permission.
  • [Publication 7]: Mimi H. Hassim and Markku Hurme. 2008. Computer aided design of occupationally healthier processes. In: Bertrand Braunschweig and Xavier Joulia (editors). Proceedings of the 18th European Symposium on Computer Aided Process Engineering (ESCAPE 18). Lyon, France. 1-4 June 2008. Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Elsevier. Computer Aided Chemical Engineering, volume 25, pages 1119-1124. © 2008 Elsevier Science. By permission.
  • [Publication 8]: Mimi H. Hassim, Miina Grönlund, and Markku Hurme. 2008. Inherent EHS considerations in process development. In: Simberto Senni Buratti (editor). Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Safety & Environment in Process Industry (CISAP-3). 1st edition. Rome, Italy. 11-14 May 2008. Associazione Italiana Di Ingegneria Chimica. Chemical Engineering Transactions, volume 13, pages 295-302. ISBN 978-88-95608-07-5. © 2008 Associazione Italiana Di Ingegneria Chimica (AIDIC). By permission.
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