Crowcon - Detecting Gas Saving Lives
17 March 2023
LaserMethane Smart: The latest in laser methane detection
Georgia Pratt
Marketing Executive

With increasing global regulation around methane emissions and reporting, the innovative technology of the LaserMethane Smart, the latest in laser methane detection. The innovative technology to measure methane leaks at a distance, uses a laser and camera system to provide a highly capable solution to various gas detection challenges within emission monitoring. It uses an infrared laser beam, where the transmitter and receiver are separated. When methane passes between the two, methane absorbs the infrared light, and the beam is disrupted. The device therefore accurately reports the concentration of the methane gas cloud. The device’s reading and camera’s image are overlaid and records the levels at time of inspection, all from a safe distance from the source. The readings can later be used to report on emissions and check that leak mitigation methods are successful.  

Other handheld leak detectors usually detect flammable or explosive gas but in much closer proximity to the hazard and take much longer as it involves more travel to each specific measurement point. This means that traditional hand-held detection methods are inadequate to successfully detect leaks quickly or as safely. 

Remote Detection 

Modern technologies are becoming available that allow for remote detection and identification of leaks with pinpoint accuracy. Hand-held units, for example, can now detect methane at distances of up to 100 metres, while aircraft-mounted systems can identify leaks half a kilometre away. These new technologies are reshaping the way natural gas leaks are detected and dealt with. 

Remote sensing is achieved using infrared laser absorption spectroscopy. As methane absorbs a specific wavelength of infrared light, these instruments emit infrared lasers. The laser beam is directed to wherever the leak is suspected, such as a gas pipe or a ceiling. Due to some of the light being absorbed by the methane, the light received back provides a measurement of absorption by the gas. A useful feature of these systems is the fact that the laser beam can penetrate transparent surfaces, such as glass or Perspex, so there is a possibility to test an enclosed space prior to entering it. The detectors measure the average methane gas density between the detector and target. Readings on the handheld units are given in ppm-m (a product of the concentration of methane cloud (ppm) and path length (m)). This method allows for methane leak to be found quickly and confirmed by pointing a laser beam towards the suspected leak or along a survey line. 

Overall Safety  

As there are several risks when using gas such as explosion from damaged, overheated or poorly maintained cylinders, pipes equipment or appliances. There is also the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning and burns caused by contact with flame or hot surfaces. By implementing real-time gas leak detection, industries can monitor their environmental performance, ensure better occupational health, and eliminate potential hazards for optimum safety. Also, early detection of gas leaks can trigger concerned engineers to curtail the spread and keep a safe environment for better health and safety. 

Laser-based gas sensor technology is an effective tool for detecting and quantifying polluting gases such as carbon dioxide or methane. Laser sensors are sharp with a quick response that can automatically detect the relevant gas. The LaserMethane Smart is a compact, portable methane gas detector, the latest laser methane device, replacing the now obsolete LaserMethane mini. LaserMethane Smart can detect methane leaks at a distance up to 30m, it enables companies to quickly survey multiple leak risks, and safely, without having to enter a hazardous area. 

For more information about las gas detection, visit our website or contact our team 

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