Explosion prevention and explosion protection according to ATEX

ATEX derives its name from French
Atmosphère Explosive

Machinery Guideline 2006/42/EC

In Annex I, point 1.5.7. in the general machinery guideline: "Machinery must be designed and constructed in such a manner as to avoid any risk of explosion posed by the machinery itself or by gases, liquids, dust, fumes or other substances produced or used by the machinery.“

To EU (Machinery Guideline) >

Guide to application of the Machinery Directive (PDF) >


Directive 94/9/EC of the European Parliament and Council (ATEX 95) applies to manufacturers.

The guideline encompasses protective systems and all machinery and systems located in potentially explosive areas. Electrical and non-electrical systems are also relevant since they possess their own potential ignition source.

To EU (ATEX) >
(manufacturer’s obligation)Details

  • Performing a risk evaluation of the product
  • Clarification of intended use and operating conditions
  • Classification into system categories
  • Labelling on a printed plate
  • EC-type evaluation by an authorized agency if an electrical system belongs to categories 1 or 2, a non-electrical system to category 1, or if it is a matter of a protective measure.

ATEX 137

Directive 1999/92/EC (ATEX 137) places the following obligations to the employer.

Directive 1999/92/EC (PDF) >
ATEX 137 (Operator guidelines) Details

The aim is to improve the safety and wellbeing of workers potentially at risk in explosive environments.

  • Detection of explosion risk/Detection of physical dust characteristics such as ignition temperature, minimum ignition energy, lower explosion limit, KST values etc.
  • Zone division depending on the explosion risk
  • Labelling dangerous areas
  • Determine which protective measures to implementn
  • Operating instructions for employees
  • Creating an explosion prevention document which contains all available data and effective measures.
  • Supported by following technical rules:
    BGR 104
    TRBS 2152 / TRGS 720
    TRBS 2152-1 / TRGS 721
    TRBS 2152-2 / TRGS 722
    TRBS 2153

EN 1127-1

"Explosive atmospheres – Explosion prevention and protection - Part 1: Basic concepts and methodology"

The document describes all measures to safeguard against explosions.

Outline of contents:
1 Scope
2 Standards
3 Terms and definitions
4 Identification of explosion hazards
5 Possible ignition sources
5.1 General
5.2 Likelihood of a hazardous explosive environment and its volume
5.3 Occurrence of ignition sources
5.4 Possible effects of an explosion
6 Risk reduction
7 User information

VDI 2263-6

Dust fires and dust explosions - Hazards - assessment - protective measures - Dust fires and explosion protection in dust extracting installations

Measures for safe operation:

– Limitation of dust concentration

– Inertisation

– Avoidance of ignition sources

– Measures for explosion protection

EN 14986

Explosion in fans

Defines requirements for construction and inspection of explosion protected fans.

The standard references testing requirements for evaluating ignition hazards.

EN 14460

Explosion resistant equipment.

Applicable only for systems in the manufacture of metallic substances.

The principle of integrated explosion safety includes the following manufacturer’s measures:

In the event of an ignition of an explosive environment, an immediate shutdown is required and/or sufficiently reducing the scale of the explosion flames and scope of pressure levels

EN 16009

Flameless explosion venting devices

Measures for flameless explosion venting devices to protect systems against direct effects of an explosion.

DIN EN 16009 is a test standard primarily for occupational safety.

This standard lists requirements for construction, inspection, testing, labelling and documentation.

BGR 109

Prevention of dust fires and dust explosions

Guidelines to prevent the risk of dust explosions in grinding, brushing and polishing of aluminum and its alloys

Summary and specific details of contents, e. g.:

– Manufacturing specifications (laws and regulations)

– Accident prevention

– Technical specifications

– Competence from preventive efforts

BGR 204

Berufsgenossenschaftliche Regeln im Umgang mit Magnesium.

Only suitable fire extinguishing agents may be used to extinguish magnesium dust fires.

Extinguishing agents with water content are prohibited.

The first-time processing of magnesium must be communicated to the employer’s insurer in writing. The local fire department must be informed as well.

Please prepare specific operating manuals.