July 11, 2012

What is IECEx Scheme


IECEx Scheme, under the purview of International Electrotechnical Commission System for Certification to Standards Relating to Equipment for use in Explosive Atmosphere (IECEx System) is a scheme that covers the certification to standard related to apparatus for explosive atmospheres and provides an internationally accepted means of demonstrating professional technical services.

What is an “Ex”

“Ex” is an internationally recognised abbreviated term for explosion-proof equipment and installation in an explosive atmosphere.

It is required for processing flammable liquids, vapours, gases or combustible dust industries to use certified equipment and services in the facilities.
IECEx provides a “Conformity Assessment Tool” confidence that equipment and services by an IECEx Certificate meets the specified requirements.

What is the different between IEC Standards and IECEx Scheme?

IEC Standards
  • Specify standards for the design of industrial electrical equipment or products to be used in industries. 
  • IEC 60079 specify specific standards for the design, installation, maintenance, repair of equipment to be used in potentially explosive atmospheres.
IECEx Scheme
  • IEC extended program that is focus on managing the use of equipment or products in a potential explosive atmospheres. 
  • A global certification scheme for products, services and personal competencies where manufactures and end users are confident that it is safe and reliable. 
  • All testing are done based on IEC Standard & IECEx scheme.

IECEx Scheme in Malaysia

Malaysia is a Member Body of IECEx since 1 August 2008 after Government of Malaysia (Cabinet) approved STANDARDS MALAYSIA’s request for its participation.

Standard Malaysia further established a National Ex Management Committee (NatExMC) to develop and strategise the implementation of the scheme to industries related to oil, gas, dust and petrochemical (OGDP).

The objectives are to ensure that:
  1. OGDP Industries – conform to international standards 
  2. Equipment – install correctly and are safe to operate 
  3. Workers – posses right skills and  competencies to operate and maintain the plant.

IECEx Rules

The administration of the IECEx System Certification realting to Equipment for use in Explosive Atmospheres is based upon the following rules:

IECEx 01 – Basic Rules
IECEx 02 – Rules of Procedures
IECEx 03 – Service Facilities Scheme covering repair and overhaul of Ex equipment
IECEx 04 – Conformity Mark Licensing System
IECEx 05 – Personnel Competencies for Explosive Atmospheres

United Nation (UN) Recognition

United Nations via UNECE (United Nations Economic Commission for Europe) has issued a publication that helps address the hazards in environment with a high risk of explosion such as mines, refineries, chemical plants, mills and other related industries with explosive atmospheres.

The publication “Regulatory Framework for Equipment Used in Environment with an Explosive Atmosphere” can be used by countries:
  1. That lack regulation in this sector as a blueprint for their legislation and 
  2. For aligning existing national regulations with internationally harmonized best practices
The UNECE regulatory framework is based on and encompasses international best practice and international standards and in particular standards from IEC TC(Technical Committee) 31.

It also formally endorses the IECEx Scheme (the IEC System for Certification to Standards relating to Equipment for use in Explosive Atmospheres) as the recommended global test practice model for verifying conformity to international standard.



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