SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 11 October 2021

Failure Analysis of an Oxygen Transfer Hose Flash Fire


This paper pertains to the recent flash fire of a corrugated stainless-steel transfer hose that occurred in a liquid oxygen tank-filling station. The fire consumed a section of the hose near the tanker connection port, symmetrically on both sides of a seam weld in the corrugated core of the hose. The incident took place at the beginning of a typical tank-filling operation when the hose contained cold gaseous oxygen. No injuries or damage to adjacent equipment occurred. Incident investigation and failure analysis of the hose are presented in this paper. The discussion covers a variety of factors that affect the corrugated steel hose service performance and susceptibility to failure, including the design, manufacture, and use. A failure analysis of the hose includes the analyses of contamination and metallography of the corrugated steel core. Swabbing, solvent extractions, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) combined with energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy were used to analyze contamination. Metallographic analysis utilized light microscopy and SEM. The ignition mechanism of the investigated hose and factors affecting the susceptibility to ignition of the corrugated metal hoses in oxygen service, including cleanliness, manufacturing issues, and service conditions, are identified and discussed in this paper. The failure mode that led to the ignition of the investigated hose was compared to typical failure modes that cause leaks in corrugated metal hoses used in oxygen applications. A comprehensive understanding of factors that cause leaks and ignition in hoses used in oxygen service is important to prevent future fires.

Author Information

Wehr-Aukland, Anna, K.
Praxair Inc., Tonawanda, NY, US
White, James, E.
Praxair Inc., Tonawanda, NY, US
Cook, Kevin, M.
Praxair Inc., Tonawanda, NY, US
Price: $25.00
Contact Sales
Reprints and Permissions
Reprints and copyright permissions can be requested through the
Copyright Clearance Center
Pages: 207–219
DOI: 10.1520/STP162620200014
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-7699-7
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-7698-0