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Technical Blog

Intrinsically Safe Definition

Here, at Positek, many of our products are labelled as Intrinsically Safe, this is an explanation about intrinsically safe and what that means for our products.

The certifications many of our products hold are ATEX/IECEx and CSA approval.


What does it mean to be intrinsically safe?


Intrinsically safe equipment is equipment and wiring which is not capable of releasing sufficient thermal or electrical energy under standard or abnormal conditions to cause ignition of any surrounding specific hazardous atmospheric mixture such as gases, vapours or dust, in an easily ignited concentration. In this case, the sensor will not cause any hazardous materials or gases to ignite during use.

This can often be achieved by limiting the amount of power available or needed by the device which will limit the amount of heat emitted by the device and prevent any sparks which could cause explosions in such environments.

An intrinsically safe sensor is required in applications in an atmosphere where fuel and oxygen are present causing a risk of explosion. The intrinsically safe sensor does not emit enough power or heat to be able to ignite the fuel, therefore, limiting the risk of explosion.

During this type of application, most other equipment being used will be explosion-proof. This type of equipment will contain an explosion if one should occur - intrinsically safe sensors are not explosion-proof and therefore cannot be used to replace explosion-proof elements of applications.


Intrinsically Safe Sensors from Positek


We are able to produce intrinsically safe sensors with our PIPS technology; linear, rotary and tilt sensors. We can manufacture custom designed intrinsically safe sensors.

Our intrinsically safe sensors produce 0.5V to 4.5V signal which is transmitted to a galvanically isolated amplifier in the safe area. The amplifier is able to control the maximum voltage and current levels which are supplied to the sensor and then produce an amplified 0 to 10V or 4-20mA signal for the remainder of the control system to use. This makes them safe for the environment but doesn't affect their performance. Our sensors are certified for use with a cable up to 1km long.

Find out more about our Intrinsically Safe Sensors; how we received our certification and what we can offer.

Take a look at all of our products in our product portfolio. If you would like to further discuss your application which requires Intrinsically Safe sensors then please, contact us.

Article published on: 29/04/2020

Article last updated on: 29/04/2020