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Subject: Morpholine in sprinkler system

Morpholine in sprinkler system

From: Patrick Ravines <ravines>
Date: Tuesday, January 12, 1993
Jim Mason writes:

>Its obvious that water alone on books causes damage, but will morpholine
>cause further or delayed damage?"

I would venture to say that more damage will be caused to the
collections by water or a mixture of water/morpholine/etc. from faulty
pipes or improper pipe installation than by residual morpholine in the
pipes of the fire suppression system.  How well the engineering crew has
set up the pipes and how well they do their job will be crucial to the
safety of the collections.

Morpholine, an amine, has various names (tetrahydro-2H-1,4-oxazine;
tetrahydro-1,4 -oxazine; the one above; and diethylene imidoxide) and
various and sundry uses.  In this particular case it is used as a
corrosion inhibitor for the fire suppression system.

Amines are usually volatile at room temperature and smell like ammonia.
Morpholine does the same.  It is probably mixed with water and/or other
solvents to make the piping maintenance a quick job.  Any residual
morpholine will remain in the pipes and be present as a liquid and will
slowly evaporate. Assuming there are no leaks in the pipes no ammonia
smell should be detectable.

Good luck.

NB  Caution should be taken since it is corrosive to human skin and may
cause severe irritation and ulceration; it can cause serious damage to
eyes and if it is inhaled it can cause a burning sensation in nose and
throat.  Its TLV is 20ppm (compared to other organics such as ethanol
TLV = 1,000; turpentine TLV = 100; or hexane TLV = 50; this is very low
and dangerous.)

Patrick Ravines - ravines [at] bwc__org
Baha'i World Centre
Conservation Office

                  Conservation DistList Instance 6:37
                Distributed: Thursday, January 14, 1993
                        Message Id: cdl-6-37-002
Received on Tuesday, 12 January, 1993

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