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Basics of Explosion Protection
Flammable gases, mists and dusts, together with oxygen, form explosive atmospheres. If such an atmosphere is ignited, an explosion results, which may cause serious damage to personnel and equipment. An explosion can only take place if the following factors are jointly active: 1. flammable substance (gas, vapour, mist or dust) in a suitable distribution and concentration, 2. oxygen (from the air) and 3. ignition source. An explosive atmosphere only occurs if the substance-air mixture lies within a certain concentration range, the explosion limits. The explosion limits depend on the ambient pressure and the oxygen concentration of the air.

Explosion Protection
In order to avoid explosions and associated dangers, an operator must incorporate effective explosion protection precautions into his plant. The principle of integrated explosion requires that explosion protection measures be taken in the following order: 1. Measures to prevent formation of a dangerous explosive atmosphere. 2. Measures which prevent dangerous explosive atmospheres from igniting. 3. Measures which restrict the effects of an explosion to a safe level. So are distinguished: Primary explosion protection: – all measures which prevent the formation of an explosive atmosphere; Secondary explosion protection: – all measures which restrict the effects of an explosion to an insignificant level.

Classification of Zones
Hazardous areas are classified into Zones, depending on the composition and presence of an explosive atmosphere. This enables both selection of suitable equipment and appropriate electrical installation. Classification of zones and use of equipment Zone 0 Equipment with certificate of conformity or type test certificate; especially approved for Zone 0. Zone 1 Equipment with certificate of conformity or type test certificate. Zone 2 Equipment complying with the basic requirements of Directive 94/9/EC (Equipment certified for Zone 0 and Zone 1 can also be used).

Gases, vapours, mists Zone 0 category 1 G Zone 1 category 2 G Zone 2 category 3 G


Definition (94/9/EG) explosive atmosphere is present permanent, long-term occasional

Zone 20 category 1 D Zone 21 category 2 D Zone 22 category 3 D

seldom or short-period

G = gases, D = dusts


Basics of Explosion Protection Temperature Classes Ignition temperature is the lowest temperature of a surface at which an explosive atmosphere ignites on it. Examples of the Classification of Gases and Vapours into Explosion Groups and Temperature Classes T1 I II A Methane Acetone Ethane Ethyl acetate Ammonia Benzene (pure) Acetic acid Carbon monoxide Methane Methanol Propane Toluene Town gas (coal gas) Hydrogen Ethyl alcohol i-amyl acetate n-butane n-butyl alcohol Gasoline Diesel fuel Aviation fuel Heating oils n-hexane Acetaldehyde Ethyl ether T2 T3 T4 T5 T6 II B Ethylene II C Acetylene Carbon disulphide 0/5 . Group II Electrical equipment for all other hazardous areas. Equipment of group IIC is suitable for use in the most dangerous atmospheres. Electrical equipment of group II is further subdivided in groups IIA. depending on the danger level of the gas or vapour atmosphere in which they are operated. IIB and IIC. Flammable vapours and gases can be classified into temperature classes according to their ignition temperature. 0 Temperature Classes to IEC Temperature class IEC / EN NEC 505-10 T1 T2 Maximum permissible surface temperature of the equipment [°C] 450 300 280 260 230 215 200 180 165 160 135 120 100 85 Œ 300 Œ 280 Œ 260 Œ 230 Œ 215 Œ 200 Œ 180 Œ 165 Œ 160 Œ 135 Œ 120 Œ 100 Œ 85 Ignition temperatures of flammable substances [°C] Œ 450 450 300 280 260 230 300 200 180 165 200 135 135 100 Temperature class NEC 500-3 CEC 18-052 T1 T2 T2A T2B T2C T2D T3 T3A T3B T3C T4 T4A T5 T6 T3 T4 T5 T6 Explosion Groups Explosion protected electrical equipment is divided into 2 groups: Group I Electrical equipment for mining. The maximum surface temperature of a piece of equipment must always be lower than the ignition temperature of the gasair mixture or vapour-air mixture in which it is placed.

0/6 . Measurement and control equipment. heating devices. light fittings Switching and control cabinets. less suitable for switchgear and switching installations Protection method n IEC 60 079-15 EN 50 021 Electrical equipment is not capable of igniting a surrounding explosive atmosphere (in normal operation and under defined abnormal operating conditions). the interior of the enclosure is permanently supplied with protective gas so that there is dilution of flammable mixtures. only explosion-protected electrical equipment may be used. ExploProtection type Basic principle to IEC or EN standard Flame-proof enclosure d IEC 60 079-1 EN 50 018 Parts which can ignite an explosive atmosphere are placed in an enclosure which. A circuit is intrinsically safe if no sparks or thermal effects occur under established test conditions (including the normal operating and certain fault conditions). which in normal use produce neither sparks. control boards. so as to prevent ignition of an external explosive atmosphere. sensors. control boxes for the installation of Excomponents (which are protected in another protection class). Schematic representation Principal application Switchgear and switching installations. actuators Oil immersion o IEC 60 079-6 EN 50 015 Electrical equipment or parts of electrical equipment are immersed in a protective liquid in such a way that an explosive atmosphere above the surface or outside the enclosure cannot be ignited. motors. Switchgear for low powers. large motors Increased safety e IEC 60 079-7 EN 50 019 Pressurised apparatus p IEC 60 079-3 EN 50 016 The formation of an explosive atmosphere inside an enclosure is prevented by using a protective gas to maintain an internal overpressure relative to the surrounding atmosphere. analysis devices. Additional measures are taken to achieve a higher level of safety and avoid the risk of impermissibly high temperatures and the occurrence of sparks and arcs internally or on external parts of electrical equipment. squirrel cage motors. communications equipment. Transformers. will withstand the pressure and prevent the explosion being transmitted to the atmosphere around the enclosure. Intrinsic safety i IEC 60 079-11 EN 50 020 The equipment placed in the hazardous area contains only intrinsically safe circuits. sensors Zone 2 Several protection methods are subsumed under the protection type All electrical equipment for zone 2. arcs nor dangerous temperatures. control and display units. and if necessary. transformers.0 Basics of Explosion Protection Types of Protection In areas where explosive atmospheres can occur despite the explosion protection measures employed. which could lead to the ignition of a given explosive atmosphere. light fittings Terminal and connection boxes. if there is an ignition of an explosive mixture internally. starting resistors Powder filling q IEC 60 079-5 EN 50 017 Type of protection by which the equipment parts that could become an ignition source are fixed in position and completely surrounded by finely ground solids. sion protected electrical equipment can be manufactured to IEC protection type levels. control gear and indicating equipment. Electronic devices Moulding m IEC 60 079-18 EN 50 028 Parts which can ignite an explosive atmosphere are embedded in a casting compound so that the explosive atmosphere cannot be ignited. display equipment.

Hz Ta 50 °C I or II EEx / Ex d. authorities and standardising associations.03. e.) 1) With ....g..1045 1) 2) 6000/562-. (e.2003) EC Directive 94/9/EC (ATEX 100a) 0 94/9/EC from 01. PTB) Test station. and ensure that each finished device corresponds to the tested type model. as well as test stations. He must ensure that the plant is properly installed and tested before first use. W. 6000/562-. q. q. certification and documentation.g.) Subclassification for Group II (only for d and i) Temperature class for II Electrical data Ambient temperature. 3 G/D EEx / Ex d. .. vapours and dusts – including mining ”QM certificate” of a notified body manufacturers’ declaration of conformity on the basis of the type examination Marking laid down by the Directive and the standards Name or marking of manufacturer Type marking (e. if other than – 20 °C ..06. U for Ex components.) Mark according to EC Directive (free movement of goods) Group and category of equipment: Mining (I) Other hazardous areas (II) EN marking Protection types (e... With .g. Hz Ta 50 °C 2) New: always present. ib or [ib] 3) A or B or C T1 – T6 V.06. 0/7 . of testing authority (e. A. He must ensure the correct condition by regular testing and maintenance. 2 G/D. A. The operator is responsible for the safety of his plant.. installers and manufacturers of explosion protected plant and components.g. of certificate (e.) Address CE mark.g. – – PTB No... old: not on Ex components 3) Intrinsically safe apparatus: ib / associated apparatus: [ib] Duties of the Manufacturer..Basics of Explosion Protection Certification and Marking Only appropriately certified and marked units may be used in hazardous areas.. He must assess the explosion hazard and undertake zone classification. X if special conditions are indicated for use etc. W. no. Installer and Operator Safety can only be guaranteed in hazardous areas through close collaboration between operators...C. Ex-91.1996 – all equipment and protection systems – gases. D-Künzelsau CE 0102 PTB 97 ATEX 2031 1) 2) Group I: M 1 or M 2 Group II: 1 g/D. Two directives are valid up to year 2003 for placing on market of explosion protected equipment: EC Directive Validity Range of validity for equipment in hazardous areas QM system of manufacturer Certificate of conformity 79/196/EEC until 30. The manufacturers of explosion protected equipment must be responsible for part testing.. e. The installer must comply with the installation requirements and select and install the electrical equipment in accordance with its use. . ib or [ib] 3) A or B or C T1 – T6 V. + 40 °C. no.2003 – electrical equipment – gases and vapours – not for mining no requirements conformity or inspection certificate of a notified body EC Directive 79/196/EEC (until 30.