# Could Static Electricity cause Fire in a room full of Flammable Gases

I am working on a Project and one of the major part of it is a GAS Detector, The GAS Detector detects the large number of flammable gases, but in order to test the Detector I am required to release certain gases in a room from the GAS cylinder with different flammable gases.

There is no such thing in a room which could cause ignition, still i wonder if the Static electricity produces in a room somehow, can it cause the fire or some harm due to this gases ??

Is there even the slightest possiblity that it could be harmful ? I just want to know if it may cause so that I could tell my Professors why I am testing the GAS sensor with the Hydrogen gas present in air.

• This is hardly the sort of game to play in a "room." Either look up the gas density of e.g. hydrogen at which it becomes combustible, let alone explosive, or get yourself a proper safe test chamber. You really think a spark won't ignite an ignitable substance? – Carl Witthoft Jan 15 '14 at 17:55
• @ Carl : maybe the op is asking what are the conditions which may cause the sparking ! – Rijul Gupta Jan 15 '14 at 18:13
• @ Sufiyan : Why are you testing with $H_2$ ? – Rijul Gupta Jan 15 '14 at 18:14
• @rijulgupta this is why i am testing with H2 (kindly see the answer here ) electronics.stackexchange.com/q/96092 the other reason is the other gases could be flammable. – Sufiyan Ghori Jan 15 '14 at 18:43

You are saying other gases could be flammable as if $H_2$ ins't !

Anyway I would sugggest you to take a solid metal drum, drill holes in it place the device such that its calibration modules stick out, seal it up, through some other hole insert a pipe to vacuum, through other hole insert pipe to fill $H_2$ seal that up too ! Seal everything ! create the vacuum , Fill the gas in tank and calibrate without hesitation.

What this method does is as there calibration will be done to as much $H_2$ as possible due to the vacuum created earlier it will be of better resolution. As you have sealed up all openings, no interference from outside medium. As it is a metal container, there will be no electric field inside as it will behave like faradays cage. No electric field means no interference with your device which may disturb calibration and/or cause sparking by interaction with your device or otherwise.

Yes, a spark from whatever source can ignite flammable gas.

If you are testing a detector for levels of gas so that you can calibrate it, it will be foolish to do this in a room with you inside.

As the comments suggest, create a special volume where you can safely control the density of the gas .

H2 is flammable too. The recommendation to use H2 is for consistency of calibration with the factory settings.