Wednesday, May 23, 2018

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What Are Those IP Codes Found On The Instrument Enclosures?

Have you ever wondered what those IP codes that are printed or engraved on electrical and instrument casings? They are of the code format of 'IPxxy' where the first x carries an X or numbers from 0 to 6 and the second x could be an X or  numbers 0 to 8. The y is also of numerical value from 0 to 6 but is commonly omitted.  Actually, these are IP or ingress protection codes commonly called IP ratings.

Ingress Protection (IP) ratings is a standard indicating the environmental protection of the enclosure, developed by the European Committee for Electro Technical Standardization (CENELEC) specifically known as the standard NEMA IEC 60529 Degrees of Protection Provided by Enclosures – IP Code.

The first number in the said IP code is the rating for protection from solid objects or materials. The second number is protection from liquids or water and the uncommon third number is the protection against  mechanical impacts and is not part of IEC 60529 standard.

Considering that we have an instrument or controller with its casing imprinted with an Ingress Protection of IP46. The 6 and 7 respectively indicates that the said enclosure is totally protected against dust and from the effect of immersion between 15 centimeter to 1 meter.

Sometimes, ‘X’ is used to either one of the digits if only one kind of protection is provided, i.e. IPX2, meaning it is protected against direct sprays of water up to 15 degrees from the vertical.

Refer to the table below for the complete list of IP’s number codes and their corresponding description.

IP First number - Protection against solid objects

0

No special protection

1

Protected against solid objects up to 50 mm, e.g. accidental touch by persons hands.

2

Protected against solid objects up to 12 mm, e.g. persons fingers.

3

Protected against solid objects over 2.5 mm (tools and wires).

4

Protected against solid objects over 1 mm (tools, wires, and small wires).

5

Protected against dust limited ingress (no harmful deposit).

6

Totally protected against dust.

IP Second number - Protection against liquids

0

No protection.

1

Protection against vertically falling drops of water e.g. condensation.

2

Protection against direct sprays of water up to 15o from the vertical.

3

Protected against direct sprays of water up to 60o from the vertical.

4

Protection against water sprayed from all directions - limited ingress permitted.

5

Protected against low pressure jets of water from all directions - limited ingress.

6

Protected against temporary flooding of water, e.g. for use on ship decks - limited ingress permitted.

7

Protected against the effect of immersion between 15 cm and 1 m.

8

Protects against long periods of immersion under pressure.

IP Third number - Protection against mechanical impacts (commonly omitted, the third number is not a part of IEC 60529)

0

No protection.

1

Protects against impact of 0.225 joule
(e.g. 150 g weight falling from 15 cm height).

2

Protected against impact of 0.375 joule
(e.g. 250 g weight falling from 15 cm height).

3

Protected against impact of 0.5 joule
(e.g. 250 g weight falling from 20 cm height).

4

Protected against impact of 2.0 joule
(e.g. 500 g weight falling from 40 cm height).

5

Protected against impact of 6.0 joule
(e.g. 1.5 kg weight falling from 40 cm height).

6

Protected against impact of 20.0 joule
(e.g. 5 kg weight falling from 40 cm height).

Some example pictures of instruments and electrical equipments with its Ingress Protection (IP) ratings.

 Krom Burner control IP

Above is burner controller with an IP40 rating.

Proximity Sensor

Above is a proximity with an ingress protection rating of 67.

So, next time you see those numbers, you can now tell whether your electrical or instrument enclosures can be safely installed in a particular area or if your using the correct one for those currently used in your industry.

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