The authority SAMR published on January 29, 2019 in a “City Supervision Letter” (freely translated from the Chinese “市监特设函”) with the document no. 195/2019 additional provisions on the transition period of new standards and specifications on measures to improve the safety monitoring of pressure equipment (including gas cylinders) in the P.R. China. This is also a response to problems revealed by security inspections carried out in China.
In summary, this applies immediately to relevant manufacturers:
Work hardening process for manufacturer approval of cryogenic pressure vessels for sale and use in the P.R. China
For the use of work hardening techniques (also know as strain hardening) for stationary cryogenic pressure vessels, the following requirements shall be met:
- GB/T 18442.7:2017 „Static vacuum insulated cryogenic pressure vessels”, Part 7: Guidelines for work hardening of inner vessels“.
For the manufacture of mobile cryogenic pressure vessels, the design and manufacturing requirements shall not be less than the requirements of the standard:
- T/CATSI 05001:2018 “Mobile vacuum-insulated cryogenic pressure vessels – “Work hardening requirement for inner vessels” (applicable until a national standard is published).
The manufacturer may also apply his own standard by self-declaration. The declaration must state that the technical requirements of the standard used are not lower than GB/T 18442.7:2017 Part 7, respectively T/CATSI 05001:2018.
Cryogenic pressure vessels produced by work hardening shall bear the marking ‘work hardening vessels’ in their design and manufacturing documents. The symbol “PS” shall be affixed to the nameplate.
If a valid approval has already been granted (not older than four years to the above-mentioned announcement), the application and the examination for conversion of the previously valid approval must be completed by June 1, 2019.
For existing approvals older than 4 years, the procedure must be repeated completely.
The responsible Chinese inspection authority is called upon to verify the procedure used and its results on site at the manufacturer’s premises. The extent to which this will be done, or is mandated, has not yet been officially explained.
Transportable pressure vessels with unloading/draining pump
In order to prevent cryogenic pressure vessels from being misused with a pump system to fill vehicle gas cylinders or other mobile pressure vessels, compliance with der TSG 08:2017 „Sppecial Equipment Service Administration Regulation” is to be examined more closely and more frequently.
IoT technology (Internet of Things) may also be increasingly used for monitoring purposes to improve the traceability.
Operators of pump tankers are encouraged to use websites provided by the authority to document the proper use of their vehicles.
Vacuum insulation tank low temperature performance test
Manufacturers who have already obtained approval for stationary and/or mobile cryogenic vacuum insulation tanks may, in order to convert their previous approval, carry out a conformity comparison against the new standards:
- NB/T 47058:2017 „Tank vehicles for cooled liquid gas“
- NB/T 47059:2017 „Tank container for cooled liquid gas“
And give the result to the approval body for assessment. If the result of the comparison is negative, a type test according to the new standards can be performed. This can also be initiated immediately without prior comparison.
The conversion process must be completed by October 1, 2019 by the Approval Authority, possibly with the addition of required type tests. Otherwise, a complete application will be necessary just as for a first time registration.
Transition phase for GB/T 5099:2017 “Seamless gas cylinders made of steel”
On January 1, 2019 came into force:
- GB/T 5099.1:2017 „Tempered steel cylinders with a tensile strength of less than 1 100 MPa”
- GB/T 5099.3:2017 „Normalized Cylinders“
Due to the extensive changes, the transition period is set to one year. During this period, the old revision applies together with the new one.
Before January 1, 2020, every approved manufacturer should have completed the conversion to the new revision. This includes, among other things, updating the design documents, type testing and approval by the relevant authority.
From 01.01.2020, only the new standards will be permitted.
Further measures for accident prevention
Technical protective elements, devices and measures to prevent accidents when filling different types of cryogenic pressure equipment are now required for implementation by the manufacturer.
These include among other things: limiting the filling quantity, determining and controlling maximum pressure in the empty state, verifying the use of suitable insulation materials, avoiding chemical reactions that can lead to explosions.
T/CATSI means standard of the organization CATSI.
The T stands for group or organization (Chinese “tuanti”). CATSI stands for Information Association of Technical Inspection of China, Working Committee on Chemicals and Technologies for Storage and Transport of Equipment.