From January 2021 a UK Type Certificate is required for any any category 1 or 2 equipment supplied for use in the Uk. which, other than some minor wording, should be the same as the Atex ones and will serve exactly the same purpose.


The Type Certificate has historically been the required document for proof of compliance for equipment to be used in Hazardous Areas. With the introduction of Atex, CE marking and EC Declarations of conformity the EC Type Certificate remained the mandatory document for evidence of Atex compliance to the 1999 directive.

The 2014 Atex Directive changes that, not only making the EU Declaration of Conformity the mandatory document but removing the requirement for the manufacturer to supply a Type Certificate. The EU Type Certificate becomes part of the technical file and purely a supporting document for the EU DoC.

The Atex Notified Body Type certificates Certificates generally are of the same number/title format.
Typically - Notified body name or abbreviation, 2 number for year of issue, "ATEX", then Certificate No.  _NB yy_ATEXnnnn
E.g. (From SGS Basseefa) BAS19ATEXnnn for an EU Type Certificate issued in 2019.

With the UK leaving the EU, at the end of 2020 all UK certification companies lost their Notified Bodies status and therefore previously issued certificates can no longer be used (all existing installed equipment using such certificates can still be used). All the old UK certified bodies should have transferred their type certificates to another (usually group companies within the EU) located within the EU which has Notified Body Status.


Variations

For any changes to the original certificate a Variation will be issued, this is indicated by apending the certificate number with a "/" followed by the variation number. E.g. SIRA08ATEXnnnn /3 indicating a Sira EC Type Certificate issued in 2008 with 3 variations.

Although existing EC Type Certificate are valid under the 2014 Directive, variations are not allowed to EC Type Certificates after April 2016.
If the original EC Type certificate was to the latest version of the all relevant standards it can been transfered to an EU Type Certificate then future variation on it would be allowed.

Special Conditions

As part of the certificate there may be special conditions attached, in this case there will be an "X" appended to the certificate number e.g. Intertek certificate ITS17ATEX_nnnn_X. The special conditions are not generally onerous and will be detailed within the Type Certificate, common examples are:

  • "Label must include: Anti static Warning: Do not clean with dry cloth" - used on items with high surface area of non-conducting plastic in the enclosure.
  • "To be installed in enclosure meeting EN 60079-0" - E.g. For items such as HMI's which must have back protected but does not need to be part of a certified assembly.

Component Approval

If the certificate is appended with a "U" e.g. 17ATEX12345U then it is a 'standalone' approved device but a component and can only be used in the Hazardous area as part of an assembly which has its own 'full' Type Certificate.
Component approved items include empty enclosures, terminals, switches, pushbuttons & indicators1 etc. and are component certifed to make simplify the certification of the complete assembly.

E.g. a control station is made up of components A, B, C which all have component approval on Certificate D, the enclosure may have component approval.
When the Assembly is submitted for certification only the worst case for items A, B, C need be assessed and individual items do not necessarily need to be tested as they have a component certificate.
Anybody using component approved items must have their own assembly certification2 this could be a Category 3 'self-certification'3 and a full 'assembly' certificate stating that it can have any components from a list (or component certificate) including A, B & C.

If Category 3 devices (for use in Zones 2 and 22) are being certified by the manufacturer then a Type Certificate becomes irrelevant as compliance is declared in the DoC, although specific details will need to be in the manual. 3rd Parties may issue a Type Certificate but under Atex this will not be a Notified Body Certificate. .

Notes


  1. Lamp with cableAlthough items such as switches, pushbuttons and indicators are generally only component approved it is possible to have fully certified versions i.e. no 'U' on the certificate. These differ from the conventional style component (with open terminals for example) in that in order to comply they will have connections by a potted cable or a glanded backbox (i.e. there own small enclosure) covering the terminals. 

  2. A 3rd party manufacturer may include the component in their Notified body submission but may require original manufacturers support. 

  3. Any 'competent' person could certify a device for Category 3 (for use in Zones 2 & 22) and using component certification makes that simpler 

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