The "explosive" interaction between a liquefied gas and water is caused by a rapid phase transformation and violent expansion of a thin layer of superheated liquefied gas at the liquefied gas-water interface. No burning or chemical reaction is involved. The superheating occurs during a short delay time, of the order of one second, between water contact and the "explosion". In order to have a sufficiently high heat flux and superheating the spill conditions must be suitable for "transition boiling" (i.e., the transition from film to nucleate boiling). These conditions, which are mainly functions of the temperature and composition of the liquefied gas and the temperature of the water, have been determined experimentally for several pure liquefied gases and liquefied gas mixtures. The conditions which produce "explosions" when LNG is spilled on water at ambient temperature have been isolated and verified experimentally. It has been shown that "explosions" can only occur with "aged" LNG which contains less than 40 mole percent methane. Contact between water and LNG with more than 40 mole percent methane produces normal vaporization.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Presented at the Cryogenic Engineering Conference, National Bureau of Standards, Boulder, Colorado, August 9-11, 1972.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Shell Development Company

    Pipeline Research and Development Laboratory
    Houston, TX  United States  77035
  • Authors:
    • Enger, T
    • Hartman, D E
    • Seymour, E V
  • Publication Date: 1972-8

Media Info

  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: 25 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00046144
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Shell Development Company
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Sep 18 1973 12:00AM