Why Self-bunded Fuel Tanks Aren’t Like The Movies
- 07 February 2019
Movies are great for lots of things - a nice night out, an amazing on-screen spectacle, or a chance to eat a lot of popcorn - but realism isn’t usually one of them.
This is particularly the case where we see fuel tanks explode for no real reason. Whether it’s a car going up in flames after driving off a cliff, or Geena Davis shooting a fuel truck into a tremendous explosion, the trope of the exploding fuel tank is permanently burned into our collective consciousness.
However, reality just doesn’t work that way. There’s many reasons why fuel tanks don’t behave like they’ve been connected to a stick of dynamite.
Primarily, fuel needs several things to ignite, the primary ones being heat and time. A bullet entering a fuel tank from a robot sent from the future will generally cool down quicker than it can heat the fuel around it, and the rush of oxygen into the tank will only cause an incendiary chain reaction if the bullet can also clear an exit hole - but again, the liquid has slowed it down enough to make that nearly impossible.
Since diesel fuel is less incendiary than regular petrol, it literally can’t explode at all unless a constant source of heat is applied to it over an extended period of time - something unlikely to occur in an action movie. In fact, it’s not until diesel fuel is heated enough to the point that it becomes a rapidly-expanding boiling liquid that things get catastrophic. At that point the vapor from the expanding liquid pushes against the fuel tank, causing it to breach. Even in that case it’s not a Hollywood fireball, more of a pop that quickly ends as the vapor leaves the new hole in the tank.
Fuel safety is important to the team at Bulk Fuel Australia, and that’s especially so when you’re talking about Bulk Fuel Australia’s self-bunded fuel tanks.
Self-bunded means that there is an internal fuel tank completely surrounded by an external casing. This is to prevent accidental spillage or risk of contaminating the liquid inside from external forces such as weather, tampering or, if certain movies would have it, Steven Seagal. Talk to the team at Bulk Fuel Australia today about their self-bunded fuel tanks that won’t win any awards for acting but get the job done reliably every day.