Atom Alloys, a global safety innovation company based in the US with its corporate office in Dubai, UAE, has announced the launch of a revolutionary fuel explosion prevention system, ATOM.
A disruptive technological innovation that suppresses the explosion of hydrocarbon fuels in storage and transportation units, ATOM was developed over 10 years of research and successful trials by a global team of professionals based in the US, the UAE and India. This breakthrough innovation addresses one of the world’s most pressing challenges: the colossal damage to human lives, property and the environment due to the fuel storage explosions happening around the world.
Addressing a global challenge
From LPG cylinder blasts and to massive blasts of fuel tankers and at industry sites, ‘Fire & Explosion’’ is one of the top 10 global business risks in 2021. The National Fire Protection Association’s latest report on Fire & Life Safety Ecosystem illustrates the escalation of explosions across the world including over 37,000 fires that occur at US industrial and manufacturing properties annually.
More than 100 fuel explosions have been reported since 2019 across the world, most of them avoidable. Shocking incidents include the recent explosions of 10,000 propane tanks at the Marshfield, Ozark , the 2019 Philadelphia Energy Solutions Refinery explosion, the 2021 explosion at a Beirut home that came from stockpiled fuel cans, and the massive explosion of hundreds of fuel tankers in Herat, Iran-Afghanistan border. The list goes on. These explosions affected human lives and caused extensive material and environmental damage.
Tested, proven and certified solution
While fire protection and mitigation systems have been developed in recent years, ATOM is the first tested, proven and certified solution to offer a full range system of explosion prevention to liquid and vapour fuel storage at industrial scale without the need for any human intervention or triggering factors to function.
By reducing explosion risks of liquid fuels and vapours, it shifts the safety standards from mitigation to active hazard prevention. ATOM’s objective is to reduce explosion disaster risks and enable a risk mitigation strategy that provides unprecedented levels of safety with fuel storage in all industries and communities.
Innovation that creates an ecosystem of safety
Applicable at any scale – from a jerry can to a fuel tanker – ATOM creates an ecosystem of safety. The technology can protect every workplace and residence that uses fuel – from hospitals and malls to schools and industrial complexes – and convert them into truly safe zones.
ATOM was developed by drawing on innovation in materials sciences, design engineering and fire dynamics. The Atom Alloys team innovated a passive protection module, applicable across all fuel storage and transportation units, which cuts the deflagration process from escalating to detonation.
Following successful trials for military application, ATOM has won four patents from the US Patent & Trademark Office and is registered in PCT countries. It has also been tested and certified by Underwriters Laboratory, Chicago, USA; Southwest Research Institute, Texas, USA; Bureau Veritas, France; and Emirates Industrial Laboratory, UAE. ATOM is compliant to international standards like NFPA 69, ASTM, ICAO & IMDG.
Ready-made product level and sector-specific applications
ATOM can be applied at a ready-made product level such a 20-litre jerry can, to 2,000-litre skids for dynamic and static storage, to massive 60,000-litre containerised fuel units, or as sector-specific explosion safety solutions such as fuel tankers for the oil and gas industry, mobile fuellers for the fuel delivery business, marine fuel tanks for the maritime industry and storage tanks for industrial and civil uses.
ATOM is the first manufacturer to receive the ‘explosion resistant’ verification from the reputed US-based Underwriters Laboratory for its fuel storage units. Atom has successfully developed prototypes for defence establishments and supplied products to large multinationals and oil majors like Nakagawa Bussan & Indian Oil Corporation.
Experts from Atom Alloys engage with customers through a seven-step journey, which starts with an on-site evaluation of flammable fuels at client premises. This is followed by a first-hand technical exchange with the client on the history and issues faced. Next, ATOM designs and installs a customised system that protects from all the enlisted explosion risks with patented technology products. The team also conducts periodic checks and recycles used products to promote sustainability.
Building awareness on safety
John Fillmon, Executive Vice President of Atom Alloys, said: ‘Fossil fuel consumption is peaking and yet most consumers appear unaware or are complacent about the risks associated with liquid fuel and vapours. Be it the industries, communities or the environment, we all stand to lose every time a fuel tank explodes. There is also significant disparity in the frequency of such explosions between the developed and developing world, the latter even more at risk with a less-evolved fuel storage and transport infrastructure. These explosions are preventable and as an impact driven company we believe it is our duty to help create a progressive blueprint for global fuel safety.’
Bader Al Mansoori, VP- (Govt. & Institutions) of ATOM Alloys, added: ‘We are unveiling this technology in the UAE, especially as the nation has highlighted its commitment to net zero emissions by 2050 and to cut down carbon emissions by a quarter by 2030. ATOM will benefit oil and gas majors in the Middle East as well as industrial, commercial and civil users across the fuel storage and transportation value chain.’
ATOM’s #StaySafewithFuel digital campaign that kicked off in April has channelled industry thought towards fuel safety, exploring case studies with a worldwide perspective. As a token of honour on International Firefighters Day (4 May) John Fillmon and Bader Al Mansoori of ATOM presented Terry Johnson, FIFireE, Senior Fire Service Advisor, Dubai Civil Defence with ATOM products.
Impact objectives and helping meet the ESG goals
According to experts, years of decarbonisation efforts can be reversed by the carbon emissions from just one fuel tank explosion. The Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) potential offered by ATOM helps to protect lives, prevent business interruption, and mitigate environmental damage and harmful emissions from explosions.
ATOM’s system helps organisations and governments fulfil their Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) commitments, especially as the world is rallying ahead to take action regarding climate change. ATOM actively contributes to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals No. 3 (good health and well-being), 9 (industry, innovation and infrastructure), 13 (climate action) and 17 (Partnerships for the goals) and works towards the triple pillars of People, Planet and Prosperity.
Manufacturing and marketing facility in the UAE
ATOM has set up manufacturing and distribution facilities in the UAE to complement the government’s ‘Make it in the Emirates’ initiative and the Operation 300bn industrial strategy to strengthen the country’s manufacturing sector. The UAE will also serve as a regional hub to expand the operations of Atom Alloys across the Middle East, one of the global energy centres, where ATOM can deliver priceless value by helping to prevent fuel-storage explosions.
Successful demos have been held in the energy sector majors and civil defence units in the Middle East, with imminent deals to be signed, marking the first regional application of ATOM. More details on the agreements will be announced in due course.
Atom Alloys’ manufacturing and inventory hub in Hamriyah, Sharjan and its production facilities in India, have secured ISO 9001, 14001, & 18001 certifications.
For more information on ATOM, please visit: atomalloys.com