Jefferson Lab > ESH&Q
Privacy and Security Notice
ES&H Manual
Chapter 6151 Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Program
Purpose
The hazards associated with pressure and vacuum systems include leakage, rupture, explosion or implosion and can pose risks to personnel, property and the environment. The purpose of this program is to ensure that all personnel at Jefferson Lab involved in the construction, repair, alteration and operation of pressure and vacuum systems are cognizant of the hazards associated with these systems and construct, repair, alter and operate these systems in a safe manner. If at any time, questions arise as to the safety or proper procedures to be followed with pressure or vacuum systems, stop the activity and solicit help from a qualified source.

Except as otherwise noted, all references to "pressure system(s)" shall be considered to include both pressure and vacuum systems.

In accordance with 10 CFR 851, "Worker Safety and Health Program", Jefferson Lab affirms pressure systems safety by establishing:
  • Requirements for the design, fabrication, testing, inspection, maintenance, repair and operation of pressure systems as specified in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
  • A Pressure Systems Committee fulfilling the duties of the jurisdictional authority.
  • Formalized documentation for each pressure system including a database of pressure systems with assigned owners and a database of American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) pressure vessels and the relief devices protecting them.
  • A quality control system for the fabrication of pressure systems and their components.
  • Formalized in-service inspection requirements for pressure systems, pressure vessels and pressure relief devices.
  • Training and qualification procedures for all personnel involved in the construction or operation of pressure systems.

Table 1: Required Safety Training by Job Classification

Training Course Pressure or Vacuum System Technician Design Authority Pressure or Vacuum System Owner
Pressure and Vacuum Systems Hazard Awareness
SAF130A
X X X
Design Authority
SAF130B
  X  
System Owner Training
SAF130C
  X X

Scope
This chapter and its supplement provide the specific requirements of the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Program at Jefferson Lab. The scope of this chapter covers any new construction of a pressure system or operation, inspection, maintenance, repair, or alteration of an existing system.

A pressure system is defined as any combination of vessels, piping, instrumentation (e.g. gauges), and/or equipment (e.g. pumps or compressors) either containing a fluid under internal pressure or exposed to external fluid pressure. Note that vacuum systems are a subclass of pressure systems.

Examples of pressure systems used at Jefferson Lab include:
  • Cryomodules, which include both pressure and vacuum systems
  • Experimental equipment with vacuum chambers
  • Small experiment-target vessels and piping confining pressures
  • Superconducting magnets, which include both pressure and vacuum systems
  • Oil-removal and gas-storage systems integral to the cryogenic plants
  • Compressed-air and pressurized air reservoirs
  • Heating and cooling water systems throughout the site
 
Exceptions
Jefferson Lab recognizes that the above definition is very broad and many systems fitting this definition are not inherently hazardous, while other systems pose hazards that are mitigated by other programs or codes (e.g. International Building Code or US Department of Transportation (USDOT) regulations). All pressure and vacuum systems, unless explicitly excluded below, shall meet the requirements given in this program. If required, the members of the Pressure Systems Committee can assist in the determination of whether a system is excepted. The system designer and owner of an excepted system shall assume responsibility for the safe construction and operation of that system.

The following systems are excepted from the requirements of this program:
  • Any system where all of the following criteria are met:
    • The maximum system pressure cannot exceed 15 psid (pounds per square inch differential) at any time including all credible failure modes,
    • The system fluids are nonflammable, nontoxic, and not damaging to human tissue,
    • The system design temperature is greater than -20F and less than 366F,
    • The total stored energy of the system is less than 10000 ft-lbs.
  • Any system with a total stored energy (thermo-mechanical and chemical combined) of less than 1000 ft-lbs provided the system fluid is not damaging to human tissue.
  • Gas cylinders regulated by the USDOT.
  • Liquefied gas cylinders regulated by the USDOT.
  • Pressure vessels in vehicle pneumatic and hydraulic systems that are covered by USDOT.
  • Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) Air Cylinders.
  • Domestic hot water heaters with a capacity less than 120 gallons, a water temperature less than 210°F and heat input less than 200000 BTU/hr.
  • Domestic appliances regulated by building codes and/or national industry standards.
  • American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) 15 compliant systems and devices.
  • Roof and floor drains, sanitation plumbing, and sewers.
  • Domestic hot, cold and grey water pressure piping governed by applicable Commonwealth of Virginia building codes.
  • Piping for hydraulic or pneumatic hand tools and their components downstream of the first block or stop valve off the system distribution header.
  • Instruments (not instrument piping/tubing).
  • Fire protection systems constructed in compliance with recognized fire protection engineering standards and adhering to the provisions set forth in ES&H Manual Chapter 6900 Fire Protection Program Summary.
 
Program Expectations and Process Steps (click to expand)
Jefferson Lab has developed safety policies and procedures in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement that ensure all pressure systems are designed, fabricated, tested, inspected, maintained, repaired, and operated by trained and qualified personnel in accordance with applicable and sound engineering principles. All pressure and vacuum systems not specifically excepted in Section 2.1 above shall be subject to the requirements defined in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.

Jefferson Lab recognizes that pressure systems that were designed and fabricated prior to the effective date of the revision to this chapter (2/28/08) to incorporate 10CFR851 requirements were not required to meet the full rigor of consensus codes and, as such, were constructed using sound engineering principles, operational experience, and/or ASME pressure codes (intent or full compliance). Construction documentation for these pre-2008 pressure systems was at the discretion of the design team and availability of such documentation is on a case-by-case basis. In all cases, pre-2008 pressure systems not specifically excepted by this chapter shall be identified as a pressure system and shall be subject to the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement requirements for operation, maintenance, in-service inspection, repair and alteration. Jefferson Lab requires that all new pressure systems designed and fabricated after 2/28/08 conform to the applicable:
  • ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code, Sections I through XII including applicable code cases;
  • ASME B31 Code for Pressure Piping; and
  • The strictest applicable state and local codes. (generally applicable only to building related systems)
Jefferson Lab requires that all repairs and alterations to any existing pressure system conform to the applicable codes listed above or post construction codes such as ASME PCC-2, Repair of Pressure Equipment and Piping and NBIC Part 3: Rules for Repair and Alteration.

For new pressure systems and repair/alteration of existing pressure systems, where codes cannot be directly applied because of pressure range, vessel geometry, use of special material, etc., Jefferson Lab has implemented measures (defined in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement) to provide equivalent protection and ensure a level of safety greater than or equal to the level of protection afforded by the ASME codes. Measures include:
  • Design drawings, sketches, and calculations must be reviewed and approved by a qualified independent design professional in a documented Peer Review.
  • Qualified personnel shall be used to perform examinations and inspections of materials, in-process fabrications, non-destructive tests, and acceptance test.
  • Documentation, traceability, and accountability shall be maintained for each unique pressure vessel or system, including descriptions of design, pressure conditions, testing, inspection, operation, repair, and maintenance.
For pressure vessels where ASME Codes can be directly applied: pressure vessels required for any purpose shall be procured from and stamped by a company authorized to use the ASME "U", "UM", or other appropriate stamp to construct ASME Pressure Vessels. Pressure vessels that cannot be constructed to the ASME Code because of pressure range, vessel geometry, special material, etc. shall be fabricated at Jefferson Lab or off-site with measures ensuring equivalent protection afforded by the ASME codes.

Vacuum systems are pressure systems. The expectations and process steps required for vacuum systems are dependent on the type of vacuum system and associated hazard levels. Jefferson Lab defines types of vacuum systems (Category 0, 1, 2, or 3) and provides associated procedures in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.

The pressure systems of the normal physical plant, including unfired and fired pressure vessels such as HVAC equipment and boilers, are maintained under the supervision of the Facilities Management and Logistics Manager. No addition or modification of any such vessel or piping system is to be made without consulting with the manager.
 
References
ES&H Manual Chapter 6150 Compressed Gases, ES&H Manual Chapter 6540 Oxygen Deficiency Hazard Control Program, and ES&H Manual Chapter 6550 Cryogenic Safety Program are to be referenced for additional requirements for specific uses.

Users/experimenters planning to incorporate pressure or vacuum systems in an experiment must also comply with ES&H Manual Chapter 3120 The CEBAF Experiment Review Process and its appendices or ES&H Manual Chapter 3130 FEL Experiment Safety Review Process and its appendices. Although all the provisions of the present chapter apply, users/experimenters must address them within the larger context of the experiment review process.

Responsibilities:

Note: Management authority may be delegated at the discretion of the responsible manager.

Responsibilities listed here are for functions as well as staff positions. For example, a Design Authority can also be the System Owner for a piece of equipment and can act as a Technician when working on that equipment.

Design Authority
  • Shall ensure that pressure system design, construction and testing meets ASME code requirements or equivalency measures according to the policy set forth in this chapter and its Supplement. The Design Authority shall employ, as required, the expertise available through other Design Authorities, the QA/CI inspector, the Jefferson Lab Welding Committee and the Pressure Systems Committee as well as the experience and lessons learned documented in the Pressure Systems project files database.
  • Shall follow standards and procedures for mechanical design, construction and testing of pressure systems using the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
  • Shall follow standards and procedures for design, fabrication and examination of welds and brazes for pressure systems specified in ES&H Manual Welding and Brazing Program Supplement.
  • Shall initiate and maintain pressure system documentation in a project file consistent with the requirements specified in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
  • Shall maintain required training as specified in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
Pressure System and Vacuum System Owner
  • Shall maintain required training as specified in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
  • Shall ensure that systems under their purview are maintained and operated by trained personnel. This training shall include understanding of procedures.
  • Shall ensure that pressure vessels, pressure systems and relief devices installed on systems under their purview are tested and inspected in compliance with the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
  • Shall ensure that systems under their purview continue to be maintained and operated in a safe manner compliant with the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement. Standard work planning tools (i.e. THA, ATLis, TOSP, etc.) shall be employed that describe any required system configuration and preparation prior to and following maintenance activities.
Pressure System and Vacuum System Technician
  • Shall maintain required training as specified in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
  • Shall fabricate, install, test, operate, maintain and modify pressure and vacuum systems at the direction of the System Owner and/or Design Authority.
Pressure Systems Committee
  • Committee Chair
    • Shall maintain a list of qualified Design Authorities.
    • Shall brief the Directors Safety Council (DSC) on committee activities as required.
    • Shall review safety documents and perform specific duties provided in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement. May enlist the aid of Committee members and other subject matter experts as needed.
  • General Committee
    • Recommend requirements, standards, and procedures for systems designed to use, confine, or distribute pressurized media. The committee shall regularly review the program and update as necessary.
    • Acting as jurisdictional authority, shall arbitrate issues of conflict related to pressure safety, ASME Code and Jefferson Lab policies.
    • Document decisions and variances considered by the committee.
    • Shall have right of approval/disapproval for any changes to this Chapter and to the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
ESH&Q Division
  • Shall manage the site-wide Jefferson Lab Welding and Brazing Program included in ES&H Manual Welding and Brazing Program Supplement.
  • Shall support, oversee and/or supervise, as needed, the QA/CI inspector.
  • Shall provide pre-operation inspection as required by ASME codes or by engineering requirements as specified in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
  • Monitor current requirements and certifications necessary for welding and mechanical examination and inspection personnel.
  • Shall provide access to ES&H Manual, procedures and forms.
  • Shall provide access to ASME and other applicable codes called for in this program.
  • Shall provide periodic assessment of processes and documentation.
Division Head
  • Shall designate Design Authorities qualified per the requirements of the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
  • Shall verify that all applicable operating pressure systems under their authority are identified in the database of pressure systems.
  • Shall designate a System Owner for each applicable operating pressure system under their authority.
  • Shall verify that all groups within their division perform welds and brazes in accordance with the ES&H Manual Welding and Brazing Program Supplement.
  • Shall verify that all recordkeeping requirements for pressure systems within their division are in compliance with the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
Manager, Facilities Management and Logistics
  • Shall designate a Vessel Inspection Coordinator responsible for in-service inspections and database/documentation maintenance per the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
  • Shall oversee and/or supervise the Vessel Inspection Coordinator in the performance of responsibilities defined in the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement.
Chief Information Officer
  • Shall maintain a centralized database for the collection of all pressure systems records to include, at a minimum, design documentation, fabrication documentation and pressure test standards and procedures.
  • Shall assist Design Authority and quality assurance, fabrication, purchasing and facilities personnel with implementation of documentation control for pressure systems.
  • Shall assist the Vessel Inspection Coordinator with implementation and management of a database for in-service inspection.
Document Control:
  • ISSUING AUTHORITY:   ESH&Q Division
    TECHNICAL POINT-OF-CONTACT:  Will Oren
    APPROVAL DATE:   05/12/15
    REVIEW DATE:  05/12/20
    REVISION HISTORY
    Note: All revisions to this Chapter and the Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Program Supplement must be approved by the Pressure Systems Committee.
    Revision 4.0 - 05/12/15 - Chapter re-written to reflect current lab operations; deleted Technical Appendices; incorporated Pressure and Vacuum Systems Safety Supplement
    Revision 3.4 - 11/14/14 - Periodic Review; Updated Responsibilities to include Pressure System and Vacuum System Owner and Pressure System and Vacuum System Technician per M.Logue
    Revision 3.3 - 05/20/14 - Added Required Safety Training Table
    Revision 3.2 - 05/17/13 - Added notice and updated title to reflect current lab operations
    Revision 3.1 - 04/11/11 - Updated links to ES&H Manual Chapter 6122 and Welding and Brazing Supplement

This document is controlled as an on-line file. It may be printed but the print copy is not a controlled document. It is the user's responsibility to ensure that the document is the same revision as the current on line file. .