When it comes to complying with global explosion safety regulations, like ATEX & IECEx, the transitions between your machinery pose a particular challenge.
Choosing quality flexible connectors made from materials that help to dissipate electrostatic build-up - like BFM® fitting's Seeflex range - is essential. So is proper electrical grounding setup for all equipment.
But even with these controls in place, some powders are so combustible that, to comply with explosion safety requirements like ATEX, all electrical equipment within a particular radius of a transition needs to be rated to that standard.
This is in case there is a failure of a connector and dust escapes into the immediate environment - it would potentially set the scene for a combustible dust explosion if a spark were to be created by that electrical equipment.
ATEX-rated equipment can be substantially more expensive than standard versions simply because of the nature of the additional casing and sealing required to achieve this certification.
A Simple, Cost-Effective Option
To help solve this challenge, it's possible to install an additional outer BFM® fitting ‘layer’ (see adjacent), effectively reducing the ATEX safety zone requirement to be only between the two connectors.
If the inner connector were to fail for any reason, the outer connector would contain and prevent any dust from escaping into the rest of the factory until the inner connector can be replaced.
This simple solution has saved a number of BFM® fitting customers thousands in electrical equipment costs as they weren’t required to install the high-end ATEX-rated equipment.
This double-layer protection has also been used for processing particularly high-risk powders like cyanide .
Find out more about reducing electrostatic build-up here, or for more about the ATEX rating of our products, take a look at our Certification & Compliance information.