In Europe, where more than 2000 explosions of dust/air and gas/air mixtures occur annually, the ATEX Directives 94/9/EC and 99/92/EC are now legally enforceable. They directly affect both equipment suppliers and users and require:
- Prevention of the forming of explosive atmospheres or where the nature of the activity does not allow that,
- Avoidance of ignition of explosive atmospheres, and
- Mitigation of the detrimental effects of an explosion so as to ensure the safety of workers
Other Standards bodies such as the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and the US National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) increasingly require industry to implement tighter precautions to protect against fire and explosion.
(photo courtesy of Unsa).
Work undertaken by Wolfson Electrostatics is performed to International Standards, as and where appropriate. Electrical and electrostatic ignition sources feature high on the list of causes of fires and explosions and Wolfson Electrostatics can advise companies on how best to meet the above Directives and Standards.
Wolfson engineers have sat on various technical committees, including the Electrostatics Group at the Institute of Physics, the Institute of Electrical Engineers and the British Standards Institute. Many projects undertaken by Wolfson Electrostatics in the field of electrostatic hazards have contributed to industrial Codes of Practice. An example of this are the guidelines developed for the pneumatic conveying and storage of flammable powders to avoid dust explosions.
For further information and advice on International Standards contact Wolfson Electrostatics.