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ATEX and explosive atmosphereWhat Does ATEX and IECEx Certified Mean?

Posted on: 10th, August 2015

In this industry you may come across various terms that you’re unsure of. One that you may hear a lot is ATEX and IECEx certified. But what does this mean? We’ll take you through the basics of the certification.

If you find that a piece of equipment is ATEX and IECEx certified then this means that it has been fully tested to ensure that it complies with health and safety and will not generate a spark. The piece of equipment also needs to be robust and durable so that when either subjected to extreme temperatures or under any great impact, there is no real threat to safety of the user.

You will find that an ATEX/IECEx certified instrument will so be much tougher than an equivalent safe area product.

What is ATEX?

ATEX is the name that is commonly applied to the two European Directives that control explosive atmospheres. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) gives the following information on both directives:

1) Directive 99/92/EC (also known as ‘ATEX 137’ or the ‘ATEX Workplace Directive’) on minimum requirements for improving the health and safety protection of workers potentially at risk from explosive atmospheres.

2) Directive 94/9/EC (also known as ‘ATEX 95’ or ‘the ATEX Equipment Directive’) on the approximation of the laws of Members States concerning equipment and protective systems intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres.

ATEX and Explosive Atmospheres

As you know, explosive atmospheres in the workplace can be cause by either flammable gases, mists, vapours, or combustible dusts. Ensuring safety within these environments is so important as there is extreme risk of serious injuries and even loss of life.

Many places of work can require activities that will produce potentially explosive atmospheres such as on oil rigs or in power plants. Usually atmospheric conditions are commonly referred to as ambient temperatures and pressures. This includes temperatures of -20°C to 40°C and pressures of 0.8 to 1.1 bar.

For more information on matters within your industry, check out our blog. You may also find our e-book on purchasing an Ex digital camera interesting. You can download it below.

Ex digital camera - 10 things to consider

Buying any Ex digital camera is a big commitment, even the simplest of Ex devices can be many times the cost of their non-Ex equivalent. Download our FREE eBook which includes the 10 key things to consider when making your purchase.

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