Understanding Real-Time Area Monitoring

Area monitors are usually constructed to establish a buffer between workers and possible gas hazards, or to form a perimeter around a zone in which work associated with potentially hazardous conditions is being undertaken. Real-time area monitoring necessitates the continuous collection, processing and delivery of instrument data.

This unbroken current of information allows access to real-time data from a PC or mobile device anytime and anywhere.

Among gas detection contexts, the main objective of real-time area monitoring data is to be able to react to threatening or emergency situations. Real-time data acquisition and processing enables immediate notifications or email alerts when an area monitor locally detects combustible gas, for example. Additionally, real-time area monitoring yields data for up-to-date reports that can be presented or printed at any appropriate time, thus augmenting safety compliance.

When to Use Area Monitoring

Area monitors are typically utilized to ensure worker safety during plant shutdowns as part of maintenance programs, and within other temporary detection zones where fixed gas detection is not established.

They can be implemented for confined space functions, as well as perimeter or fence line monitoring, and are highly mobile, allowing them to be easily transferred as situations and work conditions change. In many situations, they are employed to supplement personal gas detection apparatus.

Establishing a Live Area Monitoring Solution

Picture a unit of an industrial plant where a low-level gas leak has been detected and cannot be repaired until the following plant shutdown. Area monitors can be prudently located to segregate the area from where work is being undertaken. Constant monitoring and instant notification enable safety personnel to proceed properly in case of a gas-related emergency.

Manufacturer recommendations are provided to ensure the proper distance is maintained between monitors, so that an integrated and effective safety barrier is established. These distances differ according to the environment, as well as the maximum distance of inter-monitor communication. Additionally, those who orientate the monitors must account for the following:

  • The gases likely to be detected;
  • The behavior of these gases in comparison to natural air, in the context of the conditions indoors or outdoors;
  • The workers’ location;
  • The likely location of hazards;
  • The prevailing winds and airflow conditions.

Monitoring Hazards from a Distance

The capacity to observe hazardous areas in real time, from any location or connected device, is invaluable. Pipelines, fence lines, and chemical spills represent paradigmatic situations for which real-time area monitoring is required.  Real-time knowledge enhances reaction times but also equips responders with valuable prior knowledge before negotiating a hazardous situation.

The easiest way to view real-time area monitor readings is by implementing a cloud-based monitoring platform connected to wireless area monitors. Cloud software is available on all devices, anywhere, at any time, and provides immediate access to live data. With live monitoring software users can:

  • Consider area monitoring status updates
  • Inspect a live-monitoring map
  • Obtain comprehensive, subscription-based alerts (via SMS text or e-mail)

Real-time area monitoring, which yields warnings and enables fast reaction times, permits a more comprehensive understanding of environmental conditions. Additionally, continuous data accessibility equips staff and employers with a more holistic view of possible hazards, which in turn empowers management to enact decisions that will improve job safety.

Industrial Scientific’s Real-Time Area Monitoring

Industrial Scientific’s Radius® BZ1 Area Monitors interact with the RGX Gateway, an inherently safe transfer point of real-time data. Information is transmitted from the apparatus via the RGX to iNet® Now live monitoring software utilizing a cellular, Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection. iNet® Now offers real-time text and email alerts for gas hazards, panic, and man-down scenarios on a PC or mobile device, enabling safety personnel to observe and react to incidents as they occur. The full wireless solution can be installed in minutes without the need for further infrastructure or IT support.

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by Industrial Scientific.

For more information on this source, please visit Industrial Scientific.

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