Sandia conducts large-scale experiments that provide data for and verification of high-performance computing simulations concerning the vulnerabilities of our vital infrastructure.

New research shows that large-scale liquefied natural gas fires are hotter but smaller than anticipated, which means regulators can assume that a slightly smaller area would be at risk in the case of an LNG incident, an official from Sandia National Laboratory said Sunday at a meeting of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners.

However, the study showed that extreme cold from spilling LNG combined with extreme heat from an LNG fire would severely damage a tanker, making it difficult to quickly move the vessel, Sandia’s Michael Hightower, told a gas panel at NARUC’s annual meeting in St. Louis, Missouri.

Sandia conducted the study for the US Department of Energy, after a 2007 report by the Government Accountability Office recommended more research on the potential for cascading failure of LNG tanks, Hightower said.

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