The Significance of Calibration in Hazardous Areas

Equipment calibration in any industrial environment should not only be accurate and meticulous but also efficient and safe. Every industrial setting has a different classification for hazardous areas that can greatly benefit with the use of intrinsically safe lab calibrators. These calibrators facilitate optimal and secure operation of electronic instruments in explosive environments while ensuring that existing electrical and thermal energy is adequate but at the same time low enough to prevent ignition.

A hazardous industrial setting typically involves the use of flammable substances which may be in the form of liquid, gas, dust or vapour. In such areas, the risk of fire always remains if all the three conditions of the Explosion Triangle are met. But the risk can be easily eliminated by hiring professional lab equipment calibration services that ensure equipment is calibrated and traceable to the applicable standards.

The Explosion Triangle

The explosion triangle is formed in the presence of three elements: oxygen, a flammable substance, and a source of ignition. The presence of any one or more of these 3 elements increases the risk of fire but it is not always possible to eliminate oxygen and the flammable substances. The most practical solution here is to remove the source of ignition.

There are several ways to design intrinsically safe calibration equipment that can be efficiently used in hazardous industrial settings. Calibration equipment ensures that even with energy build-up, the risk of excessive heat or spark igniting gases or vapours is completely eliminated. However, instrument errors can still occur due to electrical supply, additional components, drift or environmental conditions. Lab calibration services recognise the importance of lab equipment calibration and provide customised services that ensure accurate measurements that are in accordance to documented and controlled processes.

Protective Techniques to Prevent an Explosion  

The techniques to ensure electric equipment and instruments work safely in hazardous areas can be classified into two main categories.

  1. Isolating the source of ignition (Exd, Exp, Exq, Exo, Exm)
  2. Eliminating the source of ignition (Exe, Exi)

The table below describes the labelling on equipment along with a brief description


Technique Labeling Description
Exd d Flameproof
Exm m Encapsulated
Exn n Non incendive
Exo o Oil filled
Exp p Pressurized
Exq q Quartz filled
Exe e Increased safety
Exi I Intrinsically safe


Why Intrinsically Safe Technique is the Most Suitable Approach

The intrinsically safe technique is the most preferred and practical protective technique for calibrating electrical equipment in a manner that it does not provide adequate energy to ignite sparks even in extremely high temperatures. The equipment is engineered to be intrinsically safe even if there is a fault in the device.

 Hot Work Permit for Hazardous Areas

Employing non-ex calibration equipment in hazardous applications is possible but requires special permission from the safety personnel. This includes the use of personal safety gadgets like handy gas detectors that technicians carry to the field. Using ex-rated equipment does not need approvals and it is also suitable for hazardous areas.

Intrinsically safe calibrators are tailored to prevent ignition even in the presence of flammable materials like gases, vapors, and mists. Designed specifically for explosive environments like rigs and oil refineries, Ex calibrators are safe for employees, improve efficiency by eliminating manual recording of data and boost productivity. Ensuring safety in hazardous settings requires proper use of lab equipment. Lab equipment calibration services offer customised on-site equipment calibration services that ensure the highest levels of accuracy and even with process changes.

RS calibration offers comprehensive lab equipment calibration services for all hazardous areas of operations. Our technicians are trained to meet the requirements of the most demanding environments where explosive liquids, gases, and vapours are used. For accredited lab equipment calibration services that ensure complete control and safety of your processes and operations, call us at 1-877-799-0922.

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