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Kate Howard

Process Safety Specialist

Kate is a Process Safety Specialist with expertise in Explosives and UK Health and Safety Regulations. Kate now undertakes DSEAR and HAZOP assessments in a variety of industries for DEKRA Process Safety.

Kate Howard
Static is one of the insults that can initiate explosive and pyrotechnic substances, as well as flammable vapors and dusts. In my experience, static is often the least understood ignition source although always included in risk assessments and incident investigations. What tends to be better appreciated is the sensitiveness of a substance to static, that is, how easy it is to ignite that material with static. Electrostatic discharges are the only ignition source specifically named in the Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations, which do apply to the manufacture of explosives, in part.

In this talk, I will cover the three types of charging mechanisms that can generate static electricity and the seven different discharge types, before looking at where these can impact in a typical manufacturing environment and how they can be prevented. I aim for you to leave with a greater appreciation of electrostatic for you to be able to identify potential charging situations and be able to prevent or mitigate before a dangerous discharge occurs.