It’s Pyroban’s purpose to keep people safe in hazardous areas which is why we are committed to complying with all regulations, without compromising safety. To apply the CE marking (or UKCA in the UK) for a converted ATEX forklift truck, it is fundamental that all requirements are addressed, not just ATEX. Pyroban conducts many different tests in order to comply. The EMC test is very important, and here’s why.
First of all, the professional conduct and integrity of the conversion company is paramount on any ATEX forklift modification. The end user requests ATEX compliance for their hazardous operation. They also assume the Materials Handling Equipment (MHE) will comply with all other requirements, as “declared” by the CE marking on the equipment label.
For standard MHE, CE marking does not mandate 3rd party certification. Even for ATEX, 3rd party certification of the complete fork truck is not required as it is classified as “an assembly”, even for zone 1/21 applications. Pyroban, like others, has an ATEX Quality Assurance Notification (QAN), ISO9001, IECEx QAR and other accreditations but none assure overall CE compliance.
So, the credibility of the CE marking relies on the integrity of the conversion company to complete all required tests for all applicable Directives, not just ATEX.
It is therefore important to understand the implications of this before choosing an ATEX conversion company and the EMC requirement provides a great example that may differentiate one from another.
Afterall, an ATEX conversion is a highly complex engineering task and can be difficult for OEMs or dealers to know what to look out for beyond the ATEX conversion (proof of an EMC test for example).
Forklift OEMs and dealers should fully trust the conversion company and ALL its processes before placing any ATEX converted forklift truck on the market. We always welcome audits by our customers to see how we undertake a conversion including the CE marking requirements.
Did you overlook EMC testing on your ATEX forklifts?
One area that may sometimes be overlooked (not by Pyroban!) is the EMC test. Pictured is a recent electric counterbalance forklift undergoing EMC testing following ATEX conversion at the Pyroban factory in Shoreham By Sea, UK.
Why is the EMC test important for ATEX forklift trucks?
When forklift trucks are modified for hazardous area applications, it is necessary to modify the wiring and circuits. This can affect the original truck’s EMC compliance.
To ensure the end product CE marking is credible, Pyroban has a dedicated CE marking procedure within its Quality Management System and each truck undergoes a CE marking assessment to address all applicable Directive requirements.
For example, Pyroban’s CE assessment will identify which conversions need to undertake EMC testing (before and after Ex conversions) to validate the effect of the modifications performed. Like in the cases seen in the photos above, EMC testing is performed by Pyroban whenever a new truck model is encountered.
EMC testing checks the emissions and immunity of the systems on the truck to ensure they are at a level to allow interoperability with each other, and other systems in the area. This ensures that systems are not prone to spurious behaviour or even failure due to EMC phenomena. The EMC test establishes baseline pre-conversion levels and is checked again after the conversion. We use an accredited 3rd party company to undertake the testing, either in a full EMC laboratory or on-site depending on the scope of testing required.
With the extensive modifications required for ATEX, the original EMC compliance can not be assumed to be unaffected. Wiring changes can have a significant impact on the EMC compliance which, in some situations, could cause interference to the end user’s operational Ex control system with detrimental safety consequences.
Pyroban Quality Assurance
In other words, we provide a complete, compliant, safe forklift conversion to deliver on our purpose of keeping people safe in a hazardous area. Whether Pyroban, the OEM or dealer places the fork truck on the market after a Pyroban ATEX conversion, you can be assured that the CE marking is credible and covers more than just ATEX.
Contact us for more information.