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ATEX and IECEx Updated - Hazardex 2016

29 October 2015

Ron Sinclair is Technical Manager of SGS Baseefa and from his unique position in relation to the ATEX Directives (where he is on the editing panel for the next publication of the ATEX Guidelines) and as a member of the IECEx Executive committee, he will be presenting an update on the considerable developments in both of the certification schemes at the Institute of Measurement & Control meeting on February 23.

April 2016 marks the implementation of the new ATEX Directive 2014/34/EU, as it replaces 94/9/EC.  How does this implementation affect manufacturers and purchasers of equipment?  For many manufacturers, if they prepare correctly, the changeover date can be very much a non-event, but to be caught napping could see them on the wrong side of the law. 
Technical changes will not be required to existing designs, but the accompanying documentation will require a refresh, and new rules come in affecting particularly agents and importers, if they represent manufacturers based outside the European economic area, where they acquire specific responsibilities for document retention.
Assuming all goes according to plan, by April, we should also have three brand new standards in the ISO 80079 series providing, for the first time, the opportunity to have international IECEx Certification for non-electrical equipment intended for installation in hazardous atmospheres. 
ISO 80079-36 and -37 will replace the (European only) EN 13463 series of standards, while ISO 80079-38 is dedicated to mining equipment.  At the same time as providing opportunities for international sales, this will also require manufacturers for the European market to re-evaluate their equipment, against the new standards which will become harmonised for ATEX.
At IECEx we also see an emphasis on the further development of the well-received “Service Facility Certification” scheme, specifically on certifying the capability of companies offering services in the Area Classification, Plant Design, Installation, Inspection and Maintenance fields.

And a completely new scheme started in 2015, to provide international endorsement of training providers, who can match their training courses to the ten Competence Units in the Certification of Personnel Competence Scheme.

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