Monitoring Safety of Railway Tank Cars (Fall 1999) IPRO 013
MetadataShow full item record
Railroad tank cars are efficient vehicles for the transport of large quantities of liquid commodities in North America. These commodities include foodstuffs as well as a wide range of chemicals use in the process industries. Transport Canada and the U.S. Department of Transportation collaborate in the formulation of rules and regulations for the transportation of hazardous commodities. While the incidence of non-accident release (NARs) is very small there is nevertheless a further collaborative effort by shippers and car owners alike to reduce the incidence of NARs to zero. One approach in reducing NARs is to develop a means to identify small leaks immediately, while the vehicle is in transit. The IPRO team will identify and evaluate methods for detecting small leaks using car mounted sensors and alerting the shipper of the leak automatically form remote locations. This includes consideration of how to mount sensors and telemetry devices, log data, predict unacceptable trends and incidents, and report them in a timely, reliable and cost-effective fashion. The technologies involved in the development of such a system would include characterization of target chemicals, sensors and date transmission, mounting to the tank car, evaluation of the econ0omic viability of the concepts, and identification of potential legal implications.