Hydrogen Sulphide Gas Detection

CAS Number: 7783-06-4
STEL: 10ppm
TWA: 1ppm

Properties

Hydrogen Sulphide (H2S) is a colourless, toxic, flammable gas that is known by its characteristic rotten egg-like odour.

Dangers

One of the drawbacks to trusting the senses (olfactory) for protection against Hydrogen Sulphide is that prolonged exposure to the gas renders the sense of smell. H2S reacts with the enzymes in the bloodstream which inhibit cell respiration. In other words, high concentrations of H2S can shut off the lungs. Low concentration exposure to the gas can burn the respiratory tract and cause swelling around the eyes.

  • 10 ppm is the 8-hour time-weighted average
  • 10–20 ppm is the borderline concentration for eye irritation.
  • 20 ppm is the acceptable ceiling concentration established by OSHA.
  • 50 ppm is the acceptable maximum peak above the ceiling concentration for an 8-hour shift, with a maximum duration of 10 minutes
  • 50–100 ppm leads to eye damage.
  • At 100–150 ppm the olfactory nerve is paralysed after a few inhalations, and the sense of smell disappears, often together with an awareness of danger
  • 320–530 ppm leads to pulmonary edema with the possibility of death
  • 530–1000 ppm causes strong stimulation of the central nervous system and rapid breathing, leading to loss of breathing
  • Concentrations over 1000 ppm cause immediate collapse with loss of breathing, even after inhalation of a single breath

In addition to being harmful to human health as an asphyxiant, hydrogen sulphide is both flammable and explosive.

Where is H2S Found

Hydrogen Sulphide is generated through the hydrolysis of sulphide salts especially where bacteria break down organic matter in the absence of oxygen, e.g. in swamps, sewers, rivers, harbours, etc. It also occurs as a man-made by-product in such industrial facilities as chemical plants, paper mills, oil refineries, etc.

Hydrogen Chloride Gas Products

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