Safe Vacuum Generation in Potentially Explosive Zones

07.06.2024
From June 10 to 14, 2024, the international process industry will come together once again at ACHEMA in Frankfurt am Main. Pfeiffer Vacuum will be presenting innovative vacuum solutions at the trade fair. This year, particular attention will be focused on vacuum generation in potentially explosive environments and on the evacuation of explosive gases.
Safe Vacuum Generation in Potentially Explosive Zones

Explosion protection and operational safety with Okta ATEX Roots pumps from Pfeiffer Vacuum (Image source: Pfeiffer Vacuum GmbH)

Wherever combustible dusts, gases or vapors are used, or can develop, there is always a danger of explosion. To ensure the protection of people working in potentially explosive atmospheres, the vacuum pumps used in these areas must be safe and free of ignition sources. Here, the Okta ATEX Roots pumps and HiScroll ATEX scroll pumps from Pfeiffer Vacuum offer the ideal solution.

Explosion-proof Okta ATEX Roots pumps
Since they are designed in accordance with the European ATEX Directive (2014/34/EU and/or 1999/92/EC) and have a pressure surge resistance of PN 16, the Okta ATEX Roots pumps meet the very highest explosion-protection requirements. Due to the hermetically sealed magnetic coupling on the drive shaft, there is no risk of zone entrainment.

Potential applications range from the chemical, biotechnological and pharmaceutical industries to industrial applications such as vacuum furnaces or heat treatment. Depending on the application, there is a choice between equipment category 2G or 3G. All the vacuum pumps are suitable for temperature class T3.

The Okta is suitable for universal use thanks to its variable differential pressure and broad range of rotational speeds. All versions of the pump can be used at ambient temperatures ranging from -20 °C to +40 °C. The magnetic couplings, are hermetically sealed and achieve extremely low leak rates of 10-6 Pa m3/s. This eliminates the need for shaft seals, which are high-maintenance and represent weak spots if pressure surges occur. Compared to pumps with shaft seals, the Okta’s magnetic coupling reduces operating costs by up to 20% and requires considerably less maintenance.

Explosion-proof HiScroll ATEX scroll pumps
The vacuum pumps in the HiScroll ATEX range meet the requirements of European directive ATEX 2014/34/EU and/or 1999/92/EC and are therefore suitable for handling potentially explosive gases. These scroll pumps meet the equipment category 3G standards for contact with the pumped substance and also comply with temperature class T4 requirements. All gases up to and including explosion group IIC can be pumped, including hydrogen.

With these properties, the HiScroll ATEX pumps cover many applications in the fields of analytics, industry, and research & development. They are also used in laboratories for pumping solvent-based substances that can produce combustible vapors.

Pfeiffer Vacuum’s scroll pumps offer high pumping speeds during pump-down, even at atmospheric pressure. These completely dry vacuum pumps are characterized by their compact design and extremely quiet, low-vibration operation (<47 dB[A], in stand-by mode <42 dB[A]). The excellent water-vapor tolerance and the integrated two-stage gas ballast valve make it possible to adapt to specific process requirements. The powerful yet efficient drive is characterized by a 15% higher efficiency compared to conventional drives. Additionally, the HiScroll package also ensures low maintenance effort and costs.

Trade fair visitors can speak to Pfeiffer Vacuum’s team of experts to find out about the diverse range of pumping stations: from customized, large-capacity pumping stations using the Okta ATEX to standard pumping stations for generating low to ultra-high vacuum, and vacuum pumps for laboratory use, such as the HiScroll ATEX. In addition to presenting innovative solutions for vacuum applications and leakage testing, the team of experts will also give a presentation on the topic of “Cold Storage Testing”. Pfeiffer Vacuum also provides products and support for carbon capture, which will be discussed in an exciting presentation called “Green Innovation”.

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