You are on page 1of 5

Technical Guide

NEC CLASSIFICATION OF HAZARDOUS LOCATIONS
Depending upon the nature and characteristics of the hazardous location, they can be classified appropriately according to definitions laid down in the National Electric Code (NEC). These definitions are summarized as follows but can be found in more detail in articles 500 through 517 of the NEC. The classification of a hazardous area should generally be done by a code enforcing authority such as an insurance company representative, a member of the company health and safety department or even a member of the local fire department. CLASS I (NEC 500-4) Where the hazardous location is due to the presence of gas or vapors. CLASS II (NEC 500-5) Where the hazardous location is due to the presence of combustible dust. CLASS III (NEC 500-6) Where the hazardous location is due to the presence of easily ignitable fibers or flyings. Each class when established is then further subdivided into a division dependent upon whether the combustible concentration of gas, dust or fibers is present normally during the process or operation, or abnormally due to the rupture or leakage of storage containers or systems. DIVISION 1 (NEC 4, 5, 6) Where any of the three classes of hazardous environments will be expected to be present during everyday normal operation. DIVISION 2 (NEC 4, 5, 6) Where any of the three classes of hazardous environments would only be expected to be present during abnormal conditions such as breakage, leakage or accidental rupture. GROUPS (NEC 500-2 AND 502-1) The flammable materials are grouped by explosion pressure, ignition temperature and other characteristics. Class I materials are designated by one of four codes: A, B, C or D. Class II materials are designated by one of three codes: E, F or G, which also incorporates the conductivity characteristics of the materials. TEMPERATURE CODE (NEC Table - 500-2b) The temperature code is used to show the maximum temperature attained by the fixture. When specifying a piece of equipment the ignition temperature of the specific gas or dust in the hazardous location cannot be lower than the marked temperature of the fixture. CLASS 1 ZONE 0 (NEC 505.B.1) A location in which (1) ignitable concentrations of flammable gases or vapors are present continuously, or (2) ignitable concentrations of flammable gases or vapors are present for long periods of time. CLASS 1 ZONE 1 (NEC 505.B.2) A location (1) in which ignitable concentrations of flammable gases or vapors are likely to exist under normal operating conditions, or (2) in which ignitable concentrations of flammable gases or vapors may exist frequently because of repair or maintenance operations or because of leakage, or (3) in which equipment is operated or processes are carried on, of such a nature that equipment breakdown or faulty operations could result in the release of ignitable concentrations of flammable gases or vapors and also cause simultaneous failure of electrical equipment in a mode to cause the electrical equipment to become a source ignition or, (4) that is adjacent to a Class I, Zone 0 location from which ignitable concentrations of vapors could be communicated, unless communication is prevented by adequate positive pressure ventilation from a source of clean air and effective safeguards against ventilation failure are provided. CLASS 1 ZONE 2 (NEC 505.B.3) A location (1) in which ignitable concentrations of flammable gases or vapors are not likely to occur in normal operation and, if they do occur, will exist only for a short period, or (2) in which volatile flammable liquids, flammable gases, or flammable vapors are handled, processed, or used but in which the liquids, gases or vapors normally are confined within closed containers of closed systems from which they can escape, only as a result of accidental rupture or breakdown of the containers or system, or as a result of the abnormal operation of the equipment with which the liquids or gases are handled, processed, or used; or (3) in which ignitable concentrations of flammable gases or vapors normally are prevented by positive mechanical ventilation but which may become hazardous as a result of failure or abnormal operation of the ventilation equipment; or (4) that is adjacent to a Class I, Zone 1 location, from which ignitable concentrations of flammable gases or vapors could be communicated, unless such communication is prevented by adequate positive-pressure ventilation from a source of clean air and effective safeguards against ventilation failure are provided.

7

500 .2 AND 502 . CLOUD 520 430 520 LAYER --230 250 . .0 Note: The above list of hazardous locations are examples only and are not statements of NEC classifications in any way by Pauluhn Electric Manufacturing.CLASSIFICATION AND IGNITION TEMPERATURES OF HAZARDOUS ATMOSPHERES (N.1) CLASS I (EXPLOSIVE GASES) 8 GROUP A ATMOSPHERE Acetylene GROUP B ATMOSPHERE Acrolein (inhibited) Arsine Butadiene Ethylene oxide Hydrogen Propylene oxide PropyInirate GROUP C ATMOSPHERE Ethylene Ethylenmine Ethyl mercaptan Ethyl sulfide Hydrogen cyanide Hydrogen sulfide Morpholine 2-nitropropane Tetrahydrofuran Unsymmetrical dimethyl hydrazine (udmh1. LLP. 1dimethyl hydrazine 305 Acetic acid (glacial) Acetone Acrylonitrile GROUP D ATMOSPHERE 464 Mesityl oxide 465 481 651 498 287 343 425 421 343 391 472 363 426 385 413 280 223 204 395 443 Methane (natural gas) Methanol (methyl alcohol) 3-methyl-1-butanol (isoamyl alcohol) Methyl ethyl ketone Methyl isobutal keytone 2-methyl-1-propanol (isobutyl alcohol) 2-methyl-1-propanol (tertiaryl alcohol) Petroleum naphta Pyridine Octanes Pentanes 1-pentanol (amyl alcohol) Propane 1-propanol (propyl alcohol) 2-propanol (isopropyl alcohol) Propylene Styrene Toluene Vinyl acetate Vinyl chloride Xylens (o-xylene) 344 537 385 350 404 448 415 478 288 482 206 260 300 432 412 399 455 490 480 402 472 463 220 NA 420 429 500 449 175 Ammonia Benzene Butane 1-butanol (butyl alcohol) N-butyl acetate Isobutyl acetate Sec-butyl alcohol Di-isoutylene Ethane Ethanol (ethyl alcohol) Ethyl acetate Ethylene diamine (anhydrous) Ethylene dichloride Gasoline (56-60 octane) Hexanes Heptanes Isoprene Isopropyl ether 2-butanol (secondary butyl alcohol) 405 450 320 300 NA 528 260 310 428 321 249 CLASS II (EXPLOSIVE DUSTS) GROUP E ATMOSPHERE MATERIAL Aluminum Magnesium Titanium Zinc Bronze Chromium Tin Cadmium CLOUD 650 620 330 630 370 580 630 570 GROUP F MATERIAL Coal (Pittsburgh Seam) CLOUD 610 LAYER 180 LAYER 760 490 510 430 190 400 430 250 MATERIAL Alfalfa Cocoa Coffee Corn Cornstarch Malt Skim milk Rice Sugar Wheat CLOUD 460 420 410 400 380 400 490 440 350 480 LAYER 200 200 220 250 200 250 200 220 400 220 GROUP G MATERIAL Wheat flour Cellulose acetate Ethyl acetate Nylon Polyethylene Polystyrene Epoxy Polyurethane Cork CLOUD LAYER 380 450 450 500 450 560 540 550 490 360 390 390 430 380 390 280 220 Wood flour (white pine) 480 CLASS III (EXPLOSIVE FIBERS) MATERIAL Cotton lint Flax Rayon Fig 1.C.E. Consult a code enforcing authority at all times to obtain an authorized classification of your area under NEC codes.

E. dust tight and corrosion resistant .C.Indoor and Outdoor . C22.2b) Temperature in Fahrenheit 842 572 536 500 446 419 392 356 329 320 275 248 212 185 Temperature in Celsius 450 300 280 260 230 215 200 180 165 160 135 120 100 85 Fig 1.E.1 North American Temperature Code T1 T2 T2A T2B T2C T2D T3 T3A T3B T3C T4 T4A T5 T6 9 STANDARDS FOR ELECTRICAL LIGHTING FIXTURES STANDARD UL 844 DEFINITION Underwriters Laboratories’ standard for “Electric Lighting Fixtures for use in Hazardous Locations”.C.2 UL 1598 UL 1598A NEMA 4X NEMA 5 CSA. falling or hose directed water. The National Electric Code.Equipment to exclude dust Canadian Standards Association standards similar to UL 844 and UL 1598.C. The unit has mounting means external to equipment cavity. Insurance Companies and the assistance of qualified Technical Engineers should be used as guidelines in the installation and use of equipment in hazardous locations. American Bureau of Shipping Acceptance of equipment based on compliance or approval of the equipment to the applicable stated U. Fig 1. National Electrical Manufactures Association standard for watertight. seepage of water. applicable regulations of local Inspection and Governing Authorities. Standards above. N.L. National Electrical Manufactures Association standard for dust tight . splashing water.500 . Underwriters Laboratories’ standard for Lighting Standard for Luminaires. severe external condensation and corrosion resistance.2 ABS Articles 500 through 503 (1981 N. . articles shown give detailed explanations and requirements for the installation of wiring or electrical equipment in hazardous locations.Technical Guide TEMPERATURE CODE RATINGS (N.E.) Definitions are simplified from information and guidelines in the National Electrical Code.Indoor . .Equipment enclosed to protect against windblown dust and rain. Underwriters Laboratories’ standard for Supplemental Requirements for Luminaires for Installation on Marine Vessels.

dust tight and corrosion resistant .20R 20A .125V NEMA 6 .” Underwriters Laboratories’ standard for “Enclosed Switches.125V NEMA 6 .250V The first numbers designates voltage e.Equipment enclosed to protect against windblown dust and rain.Outdoor . National Electrical Manufactures Association standard for Class I Hazardous Locations designed in accordance with the standard shown. NEMA 5 .” Underwriters Laboratories’ standard for “Electrical Attachment Plugs and Receptacles. 5 means 125 volts. The design for each step in amperage is such that only the appropriate Amperage and Voltage device can be used. National Electrical Manufacturers standard for Dust tight .15R 15A .Pauluhn 20 and 30 amp round pin style units utilize keying designs to prevent voltage mismatch.10 STANDARDS FOR PLUGS. severe external to equipment cavity.Indoor and Outdoor . 6 means 250 volts. The letter suffix designates receptacle or plug. falling or hose directed water. 20 mean 20 amps.Equipment enclosed to prevent accidental contact by personnel.20R 20A .3 2 POLE 3 WIRE NEMA CONFIGURATION .” National Electrical Manufactures Association standard for General Purpose . The second set of digits designates amperage. 15 means 15 amps. RECEPTACLES AND SWITCHES 10 STANDARD UL 20 UL 98 UL 489 UL 498 UL 69 DEFINITION Underwriters Laboratories’ standard for “General Use Snap Switches.” Underwriters Laboratories’ standard for “Electrical Industrial Control Equipment for use in Hazardous Locations.. P means plug.To protect the enclosed equipment against wind blown dust and water. The equipment shall have provision for locking. . PAULUHN CONFIGURATIONS . National Electrical Manufactures Association standard for watertight.Rain tight .g. These face configurations are designed to prevent damage to equipment by connection to incorrect amperage of voltage sources.Indoor .” Underwriters Laboratories’ standard for “Circuit Breaker Enclosures. splashing water. NEMA 1 (IP 11) NEMA3 (IP 54) NEMA 4X (IP 66) NEMA 7 SEALS (NEC . Seals to prevent the propagation of flame down the supply conductor conduit may be required.15R 15A .501-5 and 502-5) Fig 1. R means Receptacle.Ice resistant .NEMA Codes for Receptacle Face Configurations are shown below. seepage of water.250V NEMA 5 .

Protected against dust (no harmful deposit). IP Tests Ø1mm Description Protection against solid bodies larger than 1mm (fine tools. fibers and flyings** Falling dirt Falling liquids and light splashing Hosedown and splashing water Incidental contact with the enclosed equipment Occasional temporary submersion Occasional prolonged submersion Oil and coolant seepage Oil or coolant spraying and splashing Rain.5 mm 4 5 6 2 3 x Protected against solid bodies larger than 12. and sleet Sleet Windblown dust * ** 1* 2* 3 3R* 3S Type of Enclosure 4 4X 5 6 6P X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X 11 X X X X 12 X X X X X 12k X X X X X 13 X X X X X 11 X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X Enclosures may ventilated. Ø2. For Class III type ignitable. wires).Enclosure Types Comparison of Specific Non-hazardous Applications.5 mm Protected against solid bodies larger than 2.5mm (eg.5mm (tools. Protected against the effects of immersion Protected against projections of water from all directions 3m Protected against prolonged immersion under specified conditions . 2nd Figure: Protection against Liquids IP Tests Description Protected against vertically-falling drops of water.North American Non-Hazardous . These fibers and flyings are non-hazardous materials and are not considered Class III type ignitable fibers or combustible flyings. Protected against drops of water falling up to 15° from vertical. :finger of the hand). INDOOR & OUTDOOR Locations Provide a Degree of Protection Against the Following Environmental Conditions Corrosive agents Dust. (condensation) 1 IP Tests Description Protected against jets of water from all directions 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 1m 15cm min. : accidental contact with the hand). IEC Non-Hazardous Enclosure Codes Index of Protection = (1st & 2nd Figure)* Index of protection is found by putting the first and second figure together. 1 Ø12. Completely protected against dust. (ie: IP = 64) Note: A “0” means enclosure has no protection. lint. 1st Figure: Protection against Solid Bodies IP Tests Ø50 mm Description Protected against solid bodies larger than 50mm (eg. Completely protected against jets of water of similar force to heavy seas 6 Protected against drops of water falling up to 60° from vertical. snow. small wires).