Date: Wed, 30 Jun 2010 13:49:48

Author: Steve Wonnell

Subject: Re: Pressure Cylinder Sizing

Post:


Hi Paul,

Bill Alexander said it better than I can. We too have a variety of
slightly different sized 2000 lb tanks, and they're all referred to as
2000 lb gas cylinders unless for some reason more specific information is
needed, in which case we need to consult a spec sheet like you provided or
make the appropriate measurements.

I was just reflecting on the communication gap that is evident between the
journalist and the scientist. You, being a scientific type, noticed the
problem, but the average person would likely not.

I suspect that it is for communication discrepances like this that many
organizations (BP?) forbid their rank-and-file from communicating with the
media. They need special PR people to make sure that "2000 pound tank" is
translated correctly into "Q-size 2000psi" to more clearly obfuscate us.

:)

Steve


On Wed, 30 Jun 2010, Bill Alexander wrote:

> Date: Wed, 30 Jun 2010 09:56:10 -0700 (PDT)
> From: Bill Alexander
> Reply-To: tap-l@lists.ncsu.edu
> To: tap-l@lists.ncsu.edu
> Subject: Re: [tap-l] Pressure Cylinder Sizing
>
> It is quite common for people who work around items all the time to use a "short cut" name for a container size. On occasion I purchase gravel, and a truck load is almost always referred to as 10 yards, not 10 cubic yards.
>
> Bill A.
> >>>
> Subject: [tap-l] Pressure Cylinder Sizing
>
> Sorry Steve, we took this discussion in a strange direction.
>
>
> There are a number of standard tank sizes which are all filled to
> 2000-3000 PSI. From the CNN photo, it looks like the bio lab was using
> the smaller Q or G size tanks.
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>
> http://www.praxair.com/praxair.nsf/0/6dacb93224eb0bbb8525655b005e74cf/$FILE/cylinders.pdf
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> Is it ok to call everything a 2000-pound tank? It might help inspire fear, awe, and reverence for the potential harm that such tanks can cause. Would a more descriptive name be better? Any suggestions?
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> Paul
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> On Jun 30, 2010, at 11:08 AM, Steve Wonnell wrote:
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>
> Folks, physicists around here _do_ talk about 2000 lb tanks. That's what
> they call those size of tanks. They don't verbally say 2000 PSI tanks
> even though that may be what they mean. They say 2000 lb tanks. I'm not
> so sure that the journalist is to blame, nor the scientist. Probably
> if the scientist could have reviewed the journalist's report before it
> was published, the mistake could have been caught.
>
> -- Steve
>
> On Wed, 30 Jun 2010, Anthony Lapinski wrote:
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>
> Date: Wed, 30 Jun 2010 11:49:25 -0400
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>
> From: Anthony Lapinski < Anthony_Lapinski@pds.org >
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>
> Reply-To: tap-l@lists.ncsu.edu
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>
> To: tap-l@lists.ncsu.edu
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>
> Subject: Re: [tap-l] Explosion in biochemistry lab at Univ. of Missouri
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> The truth is that the majority of Americans (including politicians and
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> those in the news media) are scientifically illiterate, so we should not
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> be surprised with things like this. It really sad, not funny...
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> tap-l@lists.ncsu.edu writes:
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> Yikes! Such a little mistake.
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> Best wishes to all as they try to recover from the accident.
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> If you're not offended by finding a little humor on the news story...
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> Did CNN really say "2000-pound hydrogen tank"? What the? I'd bet that
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> someone said "2000 PSI hydrogen tank." In the future, remember to teach
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> those journalism majors a thing or two about UNITS.
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> Paul
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> On Jun 30, 2010, at 9:35 AM, Steven Wonnell wrote:
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> >From our Health & Safety office via our building manager:
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> *Human error blamed in University of Missouri blast*
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> By *the CNN Wire Staff*
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> June 29, 2010 1:26 a.m. EDT
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> *(CNN)* -- An explosion that injured four people at a University of
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> Missouri science lab Monday afternoon was caused by human error,
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> authorities said.
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> Lab personnel failed to turn off a hydrogen tank during an experiment
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> and the building concentration of gas eventually exploded, the Columbia
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> Fire Department said after an initial investigation. The building's
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> "Glass and debris from the third floor Biochemistry Lab had rained
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> The injured were transported to University Hospital, officials said.
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> Three of the victims had been released by late Monday. The fourth was
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> "The number of injuries was certainly reduced due to the campus being
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> http://www.columbiatribune.com/news/2010/jun/28/explosion-injures-4-mus-schweitzer-hall/
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> Photo detail
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> --
> Bill Alexander
> Humboldt State University
> Arcata, CA 95521
> 707-826-3212
>
> Any job worth doing is worth buying a new tool.
>

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