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CODE 56572


The course aims at providing the formal methodologies for the assessment of reliability and safety in process plants and in the transport, with a detailed insight into the role of human factor, the techniques for quantitative risk analysis and integrated management of environmental and accident risk.

The course is framed within the AGENDA 2030 ONU in addressing Sustainable Development Goals.

DSA students

Students holding DSA certificate, or needing other dedicated education needs, are kindly requested to contact the professor at the start of the semester to agree upon educational activity and final examination, in close adherence with the targets and learning outcomes of the course.  



The course is devoted to the knowledge of techniques and theoretical basis for reliability evaluation in process plants, the identification of hazards, the evaluation of the consequences of accidents (by consequence analysis and damage models)  and to quantitative risk assessment in stationary process plants and multimodal HazMat transportation. Concerted application of skills in environmental and accident risk mitigation.

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.


The aim of the course is to give students the basic theoretical scientific knowledge and the technical tools allowing to acquire:

  • the formal methodologies to assess and evaluate reliability of plant and processes;
  • the identification of hazards and their reltionship with occupational and process safety;
  • the evaluation of the consequences of accidents and related advanced damage models;
  • the assessment of risk  as a combination of frequencies and consequences considering both stationary sources and multimodal transport
  • environmentl and accident risk manegment.including emerging trends towards "safety 4.0"
  • transversal skills in terms of communication and team working ability, as well as learning capability during class numerical guided applications and team case-study on a selected research topic iwithn the broad safety domain.

The knowledge of these issues is necessary to manage safety problems during the whole plant lifetime ensuring compliance with the safety regulations of the process industries and the industry sustainability goals.




In-class lessons. Tutorials and numerical case-studies solved and critically discussed during the lessons. Self-directed team-work focused on acquring transversal knowledge to be assessed at the examination.

The teacher will NOT make available the video recordings of the lessons. Students are  warmly reccomanded  to directly follow all the lessons, at the best in presence, wheneve rpossible.

Lessons are delivered in Italian: to fruitfully attend classes, a good comprehension of Italian languange is necessary (B2 level). 

DSA students

Students holding DSA certificate, or needing other dedicated education needs, are kindly requested to contact the professor at the start of the first semester to agree upon educational activity and final examination, in close adherence with the targets and learning outcomes of the course.  



Qualitative and quantitative risk assessment. General Risk Model. Unwanted events classification. Personnel and process safety. Complementing economics with safety. Relevant national and international regulations.

2.Occupational Safety

Statistics and accident frequency evaluation. Performance indicators of personnel safety. Human factor and risk determining factors. Occupational health and ergonomics.

3.Hazard Identification and Analysis

Gas, vapour and dust hazardous properties and their evaluation. Risk indicators. Hazard identification tools and application to case-studies. Fire, explosion, instability and reactivity. Sound and vibration: basic concepts.

4.Reliability engineering and frequency evaluation

Theory of industrial reliability and elements of statistics. Frequency and probability.

Human and system reliability. Fault-tree analysis of complex systems. Case-study selection.

5.Severity and damage evaluation

Source term models.  Dispersion modelling of neutral and dense gas and cold jet. Fire scenarios modelling (flash fire, pool-fire, jet fire, fireball, ventilation controlled fire). Explosion modelling (vapour cloud explosion, physical explosion, runaway, cold and hot BLEVE). Novel approaches towards inherent safety and process plant resiliency Notable major accidents and relevant lessons.

6.Quantitative Risk Assessment

Local, individual and social risk. Damage models (threshold and probit approach). Risk acceptability criteria. Risk mitigation and design of emergency relief systems. Land use planning.  Risk in multimodal HazMat transportation. HSE risk management. Dynamic risk modelling towards Safety 4.0. Risk perception.


The reference teaching textsbooks are: 

P. Citti, G. Arcidiacono, G. Campatelli. “Fondamenti di affidabilità”. Mc Graw Hilll, Milano.

J. Casal "Evaluation of the effects and consequences of major accidents in industrial plants". Elsevier, Oxford, UK.

G. Nota. “Advances in Risk Management” Sciyo ed.(Chapter 4 : Trends, problems and outlook in process industry risk assessment and aspects of personal and process safety" by B. Fabiano and H. J. Pasman.  Free download at: . It is already uploaded also on Teams platform.

Lecture slides and reference scientific papers are promptly delivered in reduced electronic format. on Teams platform. Supporting material for tutorials is provided during the lessons and together with lesson and tutorial attendance is adequate for passing the final examination

Additional reference texts available for consultation at University library, or on the web:

Lee et al. “Lees’ Loss Prevention in the Process Industries” S. Mannan ed. vol. 1-3 Butterworth, Oxford, UK, 2011.

G.G. Brown. “Unit Operations” Hoepli ed., Mialno.

L. Verde, S. Moreno. “Il convogliamento degli scarichi di emergenza nell’industria chimica”. Franco Angeli ed., Milano.


Exam Board







Class schedule

The timetable for this course is available here: Portale EasyAcademy



The oral final exam is set to evaluate student’s knowledge level, design and application abilities, as well as effective technical communication skills. It includes a critical discussion on the team case-study performed and completed during the lesson period. Subsequenly it is requested to discuss topics pertinent to human safety and plant reliability, damage and severity modelling, as well as to numerically solve a practical design problem pertinent the examined  scenarios. The exam consists in an oral proof, generally of nearly 45 – 60 minutes, where the student can be required to sketch out  numerical exercises related to the course contents,  requiring neither the use of a PC, nor to retrieve data about the chemical, physical and hazardous properties of the substances. Students should refer, as an example, to the exercises explained by the teacher during the lessons.

During the "Winter session"  3 examination dates are fixed (January, February and lessons break), 2 examination dates are fixed during the "Summer session" (June and July) and 2 in the "Autumn session" (September and lessons break). All exam dates are fixed strictly following the offcial scheduling of the Polytechnic School. 

DSA students

Students holding DSA certificate, or needing other dedicated education needs, are kindly requested to contact the professor at the start of the first semester to agree upon educational activity and final examination, in close adherence with the targets and learning outcomes of the course.  


The aim is to provide knowledge and solving capabilities on safety and loss prevention issues in the process industry, with emphasis on reliability, environmental and personnel/process risk. The effectiveness assessment during the course development is performed by monitoring capabilities in numerical applications, lessons learned form incidents and team case-studies.

Higher grades at the final exam will be awarded to students who demonstrate an organic understanding of the subject coupled with a clear presentation of all the course contents, as well as a high ability for critical application  and the ability to face more complex problems related to safety aspects and risk quantification thanks to the expertise aquired in the whole duration of the studies. 

Exam schedule

Data appello Orario Luogo Degree type Note
11/01/2022 09:30 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
08/02/2022 09:30 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
13/06/2022 09:30 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
11/07/2022 09:30 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
05/09/2022 09:30 GENOVA Scritto + Orale


No formal requirements are foreseen; Chemical Plant and Chemical Engineering Principles represent useful background knowledge.

Lecture slides are delivered in reduced electronic format at the end of the pertinent semester. Supporting material for tutorials is provided during the lessons.

Optional references available for consultation at University library, or on the web:

G. Nota. “Advances in Risk Management” Sciyo ed. Freely available for download from