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CONSIDERATIONS REGARDING THE CLEARANCES AND CREEPAGE DISTANCES FOR ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT DESIGNED FOR USE IN POTENTIALLY EXPLOSIVE ATMOSPHERES

L. Moldovan, F. Paun, S. Burian, M. Magyari, M. Darie
Thursday 11 October 2018 by Libadmin2018

ABSTRACT

In case of using equipment in areas classified as with hazard of potentially explosive atmospheres, this shall be designed so as to avoid the ignition of the surrounding explosive atmosphere in which it is intended to operate. Equipment designed for use in potentially explosive atmospheres have to be assessed according the provisions of the ATEX Directive 2014/34/EU regarding the ensuring of explosion protection characteristics. In case of electrical equipment this assessment usually uses the provisions of some specific harmonized standards which are under the scope of the ATEX Directive 2014/34/EU. For some specific types of protection that can be applied to electrical equipment (i.e. increased safety “e” and intrinsic safety “i”) the clearances and creepage distances must be assessed.
Clearances and creepage distances are important elements for ensuring the explosion protection characteristics in case of electrical equipment with type of protection increased safety “e” and intrinsic safety “i”, in order to avoid the occurrence of electrical arcs and sparks in normal operation and under certain specific abnormal conditions.
The purpose of the paper is to underline the importance of insulation distances (and maintaining those insulation distances at certain specific values) and also to make an objective comparison related to clearances and creepage distances for these two types of protection (increased safety “e” and intrinsic safety “i”).

Keywords: explosive atmosphere, clearance, creepage distance


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