Industrial PCs take new forms for new jobs

As the boundaries defining traditional industrial PCs used in manufacturing disappear, they’re morphing into new, fanless, diskless forms, and taking on tasks once reserved for PLCs and other plant-floor devices.

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  • Type 1 are for indoor use, and protect against limited amounts of falling dirt. This type is not specifically identified in CSA’s standard.
  • Type 2 are for indoor use, and protect against limited amounts of falling water and dirt.
  • Type 3 are for outdoor use, and protect against rain, sleet, windblown dust, and damage from external ice formation. Type 3R must also have a drain hole. Type 3S must also have external mechanisms that can operate when laden with ice.
  • Type 4 are for indoor or outdoor use, and protect against windblown dust and rain, splashing and hose-directed water, and damage from external ice formation. Type 4X must also protect against corrosion.
  • Type 5 are for indoor use, and protect against settling airborne dust, falling dirt, and dripping non-corrosive liquids.
  • Type 6 are for indoor or outdoor use, and protection against hose-directed water, entry of water during occasional temporary submersion at a limited depth, and damage from external ice formation. Type 6P must also protect against entry of water during prolonged submersion at a limited depth.
  • Type 12 are for indoor use, and protect against circulating dust, falling dirt, and dripping non-corrosive liquids. Type 12K must offer the same protection for enclosures with knockouts.
  • Type 13 enclosures are for indoor use, and protect against dust, spraying water, oil, and non-corrosive coolants.

Ingress Protection Codes
The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) uses the term “ingress protection” (IP) to identify the environmental protection of a device. This is defined in IEC’s 60529 standard. This chart in Stahl’s whitepaper shows how the two-digit IP classification codes are used. Basically, the IP system designates the degree of protection provided by a device against ingress of dust and water.

First IP Digit is the degree of protection against solid objects

  • 0  non-protected
  • 1  protected against a solid object greater than 50 mm, such as a hand
  • 2  protected against a solid object greater than 12mm, such as a finger
  • 3  protected against a solid object greater than 2.5mm, such as wire or a tool
  • 4  protected against a solid object greater than 1.0 mm, such as wire or thin strip
  • 5  dust-protected, and prevents ingress of dust sufficient to cause harm
  • 6  dust tight; no dust ingress

Second IP Digit is the degree of protection against water

  • 0  non-protected
  • 1  protected against water dripping vertically, such as condensation
  • 2  protected against dripping water when tilted up to 15°
  • 3  protected against water spraying at an angle up to 60°
  • 4  protected against water splashing from any direction
  • 5  protected against jets of water from any direction
  • 6  protection against heavy seas or powerful jets of water
  • 7  protected against harmful ingress of water when immersed between 150mm and 1 meter
  • 8  protected against submersion, and suitable for continuous immersion in water

Click the Download Now button below for a PDF version of the R. Stahl whitepaper, “Basics of Explosion Protection,” referred to in this article.
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