FAQ: What is the difference between ATEX and IECEx certification?

By August 24, 2020FAQ

You may have heard IECEx and ATEX certification used interchangeably when discussing electrical equipment that is used in explosive atmospheres, but there are important differences between them that you should know. 

Firstly, IECEx is the only accepted certification in Australia for electrical equipment that is used in potentially explosive atmospheres. ATEX certification only applies for countries in Europe while IECEx certification is accepted globally.

What is ATEX?

The term ATEX derives its name from “Appareils destinés à être utilisés en ATmosphères EXplosives” and is a mandatory certification for all products sold across Europe. It refers to two separate (but related) European Union directives for standardization that covers equipment and protective systems intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres. 

ATEX Certification Logo

What is IECEx?

IECEx stands for International Electrotechnical Commission Explosive. Its quality assessment specifications are based on standards provided by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). While ATEX is a mandatory application limited to Europe, IECEx is an international certification accepted in several countries to help build confidence in the safety of Ex equipment. 

All hazardous area electrical equipment and lighting that is sold by Pacific Automation is IECEx certified and suitable for use in Australia.  Although there are some differences between each certification, ATEX and IECEx are very similar, the main difference being the geographical location where the certification is recognized and accepted. ATEX is a requirement in Europe, while IECEx is accepted across several countries internationally, including Australia.