ATEX - Inspection - Inspection of installations in potentially explosive areas

Frits  Fynbo

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ATEX - Inspection - Inspection of installations in potentially explosive areas

The damages to both people and facilities are always serious after an explosion. Therefore, the requirements for the safety of plants that work with explosive substances are stricter compared to 'ordinary' machine plants.

The stricter requirements stem from the ATEX directives that require e.g. the use of Ex-marked electrical and mechanical equipment and sets stricter requirements for inspection and maintenance of the equipment.

The requirements - and thus the ATEX inspection - are relevant for all plants and installations that are Ex-zone classified. For instance, it could be plants that handle bio-pellets, natural & biogas or hydrogen and methane, such as the new Power-to-X (PtX) plants.

As such, there is a requirement that an initial inspection of the installation be carried out before commissioning, as well as regular periodic inspections after commissioning.

By using correct Ex-marked equipment and maintaining it on an ongoing basis, you also minimize the risk of explosions. This increases the safety of users, and you avoid costly downtime and consequent production loss.

In the (Danish) video below you can hear about the ATEX inspection of the Amager plant.

Danish Technological Institute can help carry out the inspections

As a notified body in Denmark, Danish Technological Institute has the necessary competences in relation to ATEX to be able to assess the installation. This allows us to close any discussions between suppliers and end users regarding the legality of the installation.

The inspections are carried out by inspectors from Certificering & Inspection - an impartial and independent department that has been appointed as notified body in Denmark for electrical and non-electrical ATEX equipment (Notified Body no. 0396).

We have extensive experience from inspections of machinery and process plants both at home and abroad, including biomass-fired power plants.

We offer to carry out several different types of inspections - for example:

  • The installer's / manufacturer's detailed inspection according to EN 60079-14, which must be carried out before commissioning the system
  • Pre-inspection of the facilities for the manufacturer or end user before the detailed inspection - to ensure that no time delays occur due to unforeseen faults and defects
  • End-user inspections that, in accordance with EN 60079-17, must be carried out during the life of the plant
  • In addition, we carry out other types of inspections, investigations etc. in connection with breakdowns, fires, and explosions

Legal basis:

In Denmark, both electrical and mechanical installations are subject to the inspection requirements. According to the requirements of the Danish Safety Technology Authority, the inspections of electrical installations must be carried out according to the following standards:

  • DS/EN 60079-14 Explosive atmospheres: Design, selection, and construction of electrical installations
  • DS/EN 60079-17 Explosive atmospheres: Inspection and maintenance of electrical installations

The requirements for inspection of the mechanical installations stem from the Work Environment in Denmark’s appendix to its executive order no. 478 of 10 June 2003 on work in connection with explosive atmospheres, point 1.8.

There are no standards for the inspection of mechanical installations.

Danish Technological Institute uses the principles in the electrical standards for assessing mechanical installations.

What our customers say

Danish Technological Institute is to be commended for its high level of expertise, flexibility, patience and friendliness in relation to sparring about the observations in the report and proposals for solutions. They have complied with all agreements and schedules and have been professional and proactive in relation to the exchange of documentation and information about time consumption and finances. Steen Christensen and Frits Fynbo have both been welcoming, pleasant and very trusting to work with.