Explosion-Proof Cable Glands as a Global Connection Solution in Hazardous Locations

Published By: IndustryARC Published On : 01-Jul-2016

Cable gland refers to bulkhead module which allows barrier penetration along with sealing protection. These have capability to seal around one or several wires, cables or probes. Apart from sealing, cable gland provides other functions such as earthing, environmental protection, ingress protection and strain relief. Cable Glands are used on all types of electrical power, instrumentation as well as data and telecommunications cables. The major applications of these glands include hazardous, industrial and commercial sector. Cable glands are massively implemented in the hazardous areas for environmental protection against combustible dust and vapors, flammable gases and other explosive chemicals.

Hazardous area cable glands are designed to be flameproof, thereby increasing the safety of the equipment. These glands provide weather and gas-proof sealed connection between cable and equipment. The main purpose of this sealing is to prevent the propagation of explosion or explosive gases through wires. When cable glands have metallic construction, they have capacity to withstand an appropriate peak short circuit fault current. Cable Glands, installed in hazardous areas, are given several types of explosion proof protection which includes Flameproof Enclosure (Ex d), Increased Safety (Ex e) and Restricted Breathing (Ex nR). Basically, flameproof cable glands offer an inner and outer sheath covering with armor clamp for cables and wires. IEC, ATEX Directive, IECEx, CEC and National Electric Code (NEC) are some of the major standards provided for cable glands intended for explosion proof atmosphere installation. These standards are directly associated with safety requirements. The applications of cable glands in hazardous areas are growing and this is projected to propel the market demand in the next few years.

Chemical industry is one of end user industries of cable glands which is propelled to grow in few years. This industry comprises of the facilities to process the raw materials derived from minerals, oil and natural gas, minerals and several other sources into flammable industrial chemicals. With evolution of several new technologies for processing chemicals along with automating these processes, this industry is tremendously changing. The requirement of cable glands in the cable installations is vital particularly in petrochemical facilities. The cable glands used in these plants are temperature resistant, resistance to aggressive media and reliable explosion protection thereby, providing complete safety from fatal explosions.

United States is one of the largest producers of oil and natural gas in the world. This industry comprises of petroleum exploration, field development, drilling, refining, distribution and pipelines and other operations. For uninterrupted operation, chances of explosion are avoided. Hence, in the U.S. explosion proof cable glands faced high adoption and growth in this industry. Apart from oil and gas industry in the U.S., mining facilities are highly accidental prone and dangerous for safety of the workers due to the existence of flammable dust from minerals for a prolonged time. Although, minimal electrical installation are equipped in these areas, some of the zones are installed with explosion proof installations including cable glands. Owing to the demand for safety requirements in various industries, global cable glands will continue to face high demand especially for hazardous areas applications.

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