Methane gas (CH4) is a chemical compound made up of one carbon atom and four hydrogen atoms. It’s the main component of natural gas and is used for fuel.

How is Methane produced?

Methane is usually found underground and below the seafloor. From here it is slowly released into the atmosphere or extracted from geological deposits. It plays an important role in electricity generation and is often piped into homes for heating and cooking.

The most common source of methane exposure is at landfill sites, as methanogenesis produces methane. Methanogenesis is an anaerobic respiration (meaning without oxygen) that generates methane as a final product of metabolism by organisms at landfills. This process also occurs in some farm animals, such as cattle, deer, and sheep. As such, methane concentrations can be higher at farms, especially if they are densely populated by these types of animals.

What are the health risks and environmental effects of Methane?

Methane is flammable and can form explosive mixtures with air. It disperses quickly when released outdoors, due to being lighter than air. However, it can be dangerous in indoor environments. Methane gas leaks can lead to suffocation in poorly ventilated environments as it displaces oxygen in the room, making it difficult to breathe. Therefore, it’s important to ensure that methane levels do not exceed safe guidelines.

Why use an Aeroqual Methane sensor?

Monitoring methane concentrations around landfills is important to avoid suffocation or uncontrolled explosions. Gas from landfills can also penetrate the interiors of nearby buildings. Regular monitoring will help protect, workers, the wider community, and the environment. Aeroqual offers portable and fixed methane gas monitors for leak detection, to ensure safe levels.

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