Ex and ATEX (Europe)
From 1 July 2003 the new ATEX directive 94/9/EC is in force in the whole of the European Union for equipment to be used in potentially explosive atmospheres. There are roughly 3 requirements to be satisfied if the directive is applicable:
- The equipment has its own source of ignition
- The equipment is intended for use in potentially explosive air mixtures
- The equipments is used under normal atmospheric condition
The directive is also applicable to components that are of essential importance for the safe use and to protective devices for the above equipment, even when these are used outside of the hazardous area.
A surprising amount of equipments therefore falls under the directive, including equipment intended for offshore platforms, the petrochemical industry and mines, but also grains mills etc.
Thanks to the new ATEX directive the design and certification is uniform for the whole European market, which greatly contributes to the free flow of goods and services within the European borders.