A small chemical company contracted with customers to produce specific chemicals. Their equipment included several 500-gallon chemical reactors that could be configured to handle a wide range of chemicals and reactions. The company was contracted to produce a chemical, and developed a procedure for the reaction that included treating the waste water from the reaction. The waste water contained a reactive chemical that was a hazardous material. The procedure for processing the waste water included sequentially adding several chemicals to react with the chemicals in the water. The first time this reaction was done, there was a small explosion during the waste water treatment process.
ESi found there were several possible side reactions that could occur during waste water processing. One of these included the unexpected production and distillation of a shock sensitive chemical. ESi showed that the specific conditions of the water treatment, as well as the location and size of the explosion were consistent with production and concentration of this chemical.
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