Abstract

The industry faces a number of challenges related to breathing air systems. Most high capacity breathing air systems typically have a large footprint and take up valuable real estate in an already crowded facility. Some operations require breathing air to support a large number of people simultaneously. Conventional cascade systems need to be replaced frequently with new, full cascades. This increases congestion and can potentially shut down work while the units are swapped out. There is also a high potential for costly accidents during transportation and when lifting cascades off the ground to elevated locations.

Conventional low volume breathing air solutions have very limited flexibility. This is a case study of a compact ten ft. by ten high pressure breathing air system that holds up to 68,000 standard cubic feet (scf) of breathing air. It was designed to enable fill-in-place technology. It also has high pressure lines that distributed breathing air to workers at elevated worksites. Through the fill-in-place technology, the system was able to eliminate work disruptions during air replacement. The cascade was refilled even as far as 300 ft away while personnel were using the system.

This case study presents an analysis of conventional and newer breathing air solutions and discusses in detail the significance of this innovation on how to deal with limitations and challenges facing the industry today. The case study outlines how to make facilities safer and more efficient by minimizing downtime, improving tool time and maintaining worksite safety at the highest possible levels.

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