Tuesday 6 March 2012

Earth monitoring

The recently upgraded Earth-Rite FIBC from Newson Gale is an effective way to ensure correctly specified Static Dissipative (SD) or Conductive materials are used in hazardous area applications involving FIBCS (big-bags or super-sacks) and other flexible or semi-rigid containers.

Type C FIBC’s are commonly used to control the risk of uncontrolled static discharge when loading or unloading bulk powdered and other loose solid materials in hazardous areas. Depending on the application, the potentially explosive atmosphere where the transfer process takes place may be a combustible dust, or sometimes a dangerous hybrid atmosphere comprising dust and solvent vapours. Bearing in mind the inherent risks, it is always necessary to earth the FIBC prior to product transfer, however in view of the need to attach a mechanical earthing clamp to a flexible tab, many safety conscious organizations prefer to use a monitoring system to take the guesswork out of this operation.

The Earth-Rite FIBC fulfills this need through intrinsically safe monitoring electronics which continuously verify the containers’ resistance and satisfactory connection to earth. When these conditions are confirmed, the system provides local indication to operating personnel in the form of pulsing green multi-LEDS, along with a pair of control contacts (DPDT) which can be interlocked with the process to prevent transfer of product until a safe condition exists.

The system is certified for safe use in hazardous areas to all major worldwide approvals and can be installed in accordance with IECEX/ATEX Zoning or North American NEC Class/Division requirements. The Earth-Rite FIBC is simple to install and operate, and is supplied with a special stainless steel earthing clamp assembly, purpose designed for clamping onto flexible/fabric static dissipative materials. The main controller and indication unit is housed inside an IP66/NEMA 4X enclosure and is available with universal AC (110/120 – 220/240V) or DC (12 – 24V) power supply options.

The Earth-Rite FIBC forms part of Newson Gale’s innovative range of Static Earthing & Bonding Equipment. For detailed specifications, model numbering and further options please contact Newson Gale or your local distributor.

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