Ex-pert Electrical Technologies

Dynamic elaboration on the Art & Science of Hazardous Area Protection

Pressurized Enclosure

Name of the Safety Technique : Pressurized Enclosure

Symbol: ‘p’

Guidelines & Specifications : IEC 60079-2

Ex p enclosureThe idea is to create an artificial atmosphere inside the enclosure (housing the potentially ignition generating components) by maintaining a positive internal pressure of protective gas in relation to the surrounding atmosphere, thus preventing any ingress of the surrounding vapors and, where necessary, by supplying the inside of the enclosure with a constant flow of the protective gas which dilutes any combustible mixtures.

The over pressure is maintained either with or without a continuous flow of the protective gas

(Protective Gas : The protective GAS should be non-flammable  and INERT. Inert gas means NITROGEN, CARBON DIOXIDE , ARGON or any gas which , when mixed with OXYGEN in the ration 4 parts to 1 part OXYGEN , as found in air, does not make the ignition and flammable properties more stressful.

Air of normal instrument quality is considered acceptable as a protective gas.

The concentration of OXYGEN after filling with inert gas shall be less than 1% by volume .) IEC 60079-2  sec: 9

Common Use: Switching and control cabinets, analyzers, large motors


Protection by Pressurization is sub-divided into three types:

The subdivision are :

px

py

pz

These sub divisions are selected based upon the Equipment Protection Level required for the EXTERNAL EXPLOSIVE GAS ATMOSPHERE  (Mb, Gb or Gc), whether there is the potential for an internal release and whether the equipment within the pressurized enclosure is ignition-capable . The type of protection then defines the design criteria for the pressurized enclosure and the pressurization system.


px or pxb= use in Zone 1, 2

(Definition : Pressurization that reduses the equipment protection level within the pressurized enclosure from Gb to non-Hazardous or Mb to non-hazardous )


py or pyb = use in Zone 1, 2

(Definition: Pressurization that reduces the equipment protection level within the pressurized enclosure from Gb to Gc)


pz or pzc = use in Zone 2

(Definition: Pressurization that reduces the equipment protection level within the pressurized enclosure from Gc to non-Hazardous )


The components are installed in an empty enclosure (ATEX U certified) and then this complete assembly is certified by a notifying body. (Many Ex Manufacturers, Original Equipment Manufacturers, claim to have the certifying authority, granted by a certifying body (for example; KEMA) for a certain relevant product range.

The 3 stages of putting a Ex P (protected) panel into service is as follows:


Preparation :

the Inert gas is allowed to flow in to the panel and the internal pressure is allowed to increase.


Purging:

The Internal pressure is increased to a certain limit so as to force open the orifice plates to complete the purging process.


Operation:

The purging process is completed by closing the orifice plates and the panel is put into operation. The positive pressure is maintained by the pressure control unit thus preventing any ingress of outer explosive atmosphere.

Pressurized_systems

Type of Ignition Protection Abbreviation Region Classification  Specification/Standard
Pressurized Enclosures Type X US Class I, Division 1 FM 3620
Pressurized Enclosures Type X CA Class 1, Division 1 NFPA 496
Pressurized Enclosures Type Y US Class I, Division 1 FM 3620
Pressurized Enclosures Type Y CA Class I, Division 1 NFPA 496
Pressurized Enclosures Type Z US Class 1, Division 2 FM 3620
Pressurized Enclosures Type Z CA Class 1, Division 2 NFPA 496
Pressurized Enclosures AEx px US Class I, Zone 1 ISA 60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures CA Class I, Zone 1 CSA E60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures EU Zone 1 EN 60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures IEC Zone 1 IEC 60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures US Class I, Zone 1 ISA 60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures CA Class I, Zone 1 CSA E60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures EU Zone 1 EN 60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures IEC Zone 1 IEC 60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures US Class I, Zone 2 ISA 60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures CA Class I, Zone 2 CSA E60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures EU Zone 2 EN 60079-2
Pressurized Enclosures IEC Zone 2 IEC 60079-2

Application

  1. Large Control System
  2. Large Power Panels
  3. Encapsulation of special equipment (Camera , printers  etc)
  4. Application with critical temperature behavior

The concept of Pressurized Enclosures forms the bases of Pressurized Rooms , where the pressurization techniques are expanded and elaborated to be applied on specially built rooms and even whole building consisting of a number of rooms.

The corresponding standard is : IEC 60079-13

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