As a part of data quality management in our laboratory, experimental apparatus designs and work places were modified and improved to protect expensive experimental apparatus from natural disasters such as earthquake, lightning damage and voltage surge due to a local heavy rain. Those are commonly caused in our laboratory location: Tokyo, Japan. The disaster resistant designs can keep data quality and avoid repairing costs. E&P experiments are costly carried out using valuable samples such as reservoir fluids and cores. Furthermore, an experiment consists of many stages and its total workload including a preparatory work is huge. Therefore, experimental data should be surely obtained with keeping sufficient high quality and avoiding accidental damage of expensive apparatus due to local disasters. A lesson learned from our long-term successful case are useful for laboratory apparatus design and operation.
In an earthquake-resistant design, large or heavy apparatus were placed with many types of fixing components such as rigid frame connected with fixed wall, outrigger and wheel stopper. To date, no experimental apparatus damage and data deterioration during measurements were reported more than 20 years in our laboratory.
Accidental voltage surge often causes near our laboratory area when sudden downpours and/or lightning hit. In our laboratory-locating area, it is most frequently prone to occur such disasters in Japan; for example, +1000 lightening and +200 sudden downpours annually. The former is concentrated to August and the latter disaster occurs in summer (July to September). Based on past performance and mid-term forecasts of those disaster, experimental schedule is often adjusted so that a crucial experimental stage will be carried out except such frequent disaster duration. Particularly, an operational counter measure is important for apparatus that have risks to fail when accidental voltage surge occurs. To avoid it, more careful attention should be paid to experimental schedule by taking long-term weather information into account. Consequently, our prevenient measures successfully achieved no crucial damage of experimental apparatus and schedule delaying due to lightning surges except one minor accident during recent decade.
Furthermore, a highly-sensitive measurement such as electron probe micro analyzer (EPMA) requires careful damping control for traffic vibration to maintain accuracy. In a damping design, the EPMA is placed in independent location from the construction floor on the building's foundation. This provides sufficient data quality since the installation.