The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) enforces electrical safety regulations in the United States. Although OSHA has not adopted and does not mandate NFPA 70E compliance it possible you can still be cited for non-compliance?
OSHA’s authority to cite a company or an individual stems from the occupational Safety and Health Act in particular Section 5(a)(1) and 29 CFR 1910.2(g).
Section 5(a)(1) “The general Duty Clause” of the Occupational Health and Safety act, states that employers “shall furnish to each of his employees employment and a place of employment which are free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm to his employees”. This is the clause most cited by OSHA where unsafe work conditions are found to exist.
Another area where OSHA can fine companies or individuals for not abiding by national consensus standards. A consensus is a method by which an entire group of people can come to an agreement. The input and ideas of all participants are gathered and synthesized to arrive at a final decision acceptable to all.
Section 29 CFR 1910.2(g) states a “National consensus standard” means any standard or modification thereof which has been adopted and promulgated by a nationally recognized standards-producing organization under procedures whereby it can be determined that persons interested and affected by the scope or provisions of the standard have reached substantial agreement on its adoption”.
NFPA 70E is considered a national consensus standard and as such, non compliance leaves employers open for citation under Section 29 CFR 1910.2(g) if they are found not to be in compliance.
IRISS Electrical Maintenance Safety Devices help companies comply with NFPA 70E by ensuring closed cabinet fully energized inspections of critical switchgear. For more information on how IRISS can help you comply with OSHA requirements relating to energized inspections and maintenance of your critical assets visit our website – www.iriss.com.
The short answer to your question is: No, there is no published ” pressure rating ” for the infrared (IR) window lens. There actually is no specific Standard existing to begin with requiring specific pressure withstand testing or assigned ratings for IR windows. However, IRISS products and lenses are tested against a minimum challenge of 950°Celsius and 25 PSI. In the case of IRISS only, this information does exist and is derived from the stunning results of much more severe testing parameters which our full product lines are subjected to–and this aspect is uniquely so for IRISS alone as our products are the most tested and certified in this industry and product category.
Additionally, the reinforced polymer optic lens design of our IR windows (part of our Electrical Maintenance Safety Device family) are the only IR window lenses on the market actually subjected to and pass the required IEEE Load & Impact testing for ‘Viewing Panes’. One essence of this testing is the 2lb steel ball drop onto the center of the IR window lens from a specified height.
IEEE C37 20.2.a.3.6: Impact and Load: Viewing panes mounted in medium and high voltage equipment (600 volts to 38kv metal clad and 72kv station type gear) are required to withstand impact and load per IEEE C37.20.2 a.3.6. The standard specifically states that the viewing pane must withstand the impact and load from both sides (inside/outside) and the viewing pane must not “crack, shatter or dislodge.”
IRISS products are directly arc-fault tested by many of the switchgear OEM’s on assorted electrical gear, both arc rated and non-arc rated. They all consider their test formats, protocols, and resulting data to be very guarded intellectual property and they do not provide ‘Test Certificates’ upon completion of testing — it’s either a pass or fail. IRISS has never failed such a test and we consistently exceed the Standards Requirements set forth as well by the various Standards Bodies globally — IEEE, UL, cUL, CSA, LLoyds, ABS, DNV, IP65/NEMA 4, etc. IRISS’ most recent OEM testing was performed by ABB less than 1 year ago — the fault energy level tested to was 63kA-15kV-60Hz-30 Cycles, and we passed easily.
The typical temperature seen during this type of test is approximately 950°Celsius and the pressure peaks at approximately 25 PSI (depending on the design, could go higher). This is the Temperature and Pressure level resulting from a 63kA, 15kV, 30 cycles arc-fault test in arc resistant switchgear. Further, IRISS reinforced polymer IR optics easily withstand 30 PSI in sealed chamber pressure testing.
The pressure levels in the ISO bus fed pressurized Terminal Boxes in your application will never see any pressures even approaching these levels. Additionally, IRISS actually produces curved IR Inspection and Service Access Panels for mounting specifically onto pressurized and non-pressurized ISO phase bus systems alike.
It’s both relevant and vital to look at the mechanical test requirements for IR windows in the same way as for simply visual viewing windows fitted in switchgear. IRISS is the only manufacturer in this product category that tests its entire line to these much higher IEEE, and other, withstand requirements. As such, the impact, load, flammability and environmental test requirements take on a new meaning — this is why IRISS is the most recognized, certified, and universally approved IR window line globally.
IRISS recently announced impressive testing results stemming from three of their products, the VPT and two of their new CAP-ENV IR Windows. (read the press release here).
IRISS’ VPT-100, CAP-ENV-6 and CAP-ENV-12 went under intense testing. The Arc flash test was performed in Poland, and the results were just down right impressive, the IR Windows were Arc Flash tested in line with the requirements of IEC62271-200 (1KV -50KV metal enclosed switchgear) at 6KV, 31.7kA, for 1.1 seconds, (was twice as long as standard tests). All the IRISS products successfully passed this extreme test.
Unlike Crystal Based IR windows the IRISS VPT and CAP-ENV Systems are the only visual and IR windows that are Impact resistant, maintain a fixed and stable IR transmission and offer the largest FOV (field of view) of any IR window available today. The IRISS’ VPT and CAP-ENV Series are by far the strongest most durable IR Window systems available on the market today.
IRISS Electrical Maintenance Safety Devices are used in a multitude of industries such as, Power Generation, Manufacturing, Data Centers, Maritime and switchgear OEMs. IRISS is continuously improving infrared window systems and developing innovative concepts in the electrical maintenance safety device market. This has led to the creation of the CAP-ENV System, an innovative industrial IR window that could withstand harsh environmental conditions, offering a durable transparent polymer lens that allows visual, UV, and infrared IR inspections to be completed whilst the panel remains in an enclosed and guarded condition. More information can be found at https://www.iriss.com/emsd-cast-products/cap-series/cap-env-series/www.iriss.com/cap-env.