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IP ratings for linear actuators

IP Ratings: Using Linear Actuators in Challenging Environments

Safety and Training | by Duff-Norton | Feb 12, 2018


When operating a linear actuator in a challenging environment, such as a mining operation, there are a number of considerations you’ll need to keep in mind. It doesn’t get much harsher than operating in the mining industry where temperature, dust and water conditions aren’t always ideal. To ensure your products are protected against foreign debris, your linear actuators must have an Ingress Protection (IP) rating that shows it is built to function in these types of environments.

Breaking down the IP

This rating, also known as International Protection rating, is a recognized international standard for the degree of protection provided against the entry of foreign objects, namely dust and water, to linear motion products.

The IP rating consists of the the letters ‘IP’, followed by two numbers and, in rare instances, a letter. The first number indicates the protection against solids while the second number refers to protection against liquids. The higher each number is, the higher level of protection provided.

Solids protection

The level of protection against ingress of solid foreign particles is rated from zero to six, with the following distinctions:

Solids Protection Levels
Level Object Size Protected Against Effectiveness of Protection
0 Not protected No protection against contact and ingress of objects.
1 > 50mm Any large surface of the body, such as the back of the hand, but no protection against deliberate contact with a body part.
2 > 12.5mm Fingers or similar objects
3 > 2.5mm Tools, thick wires, etc.
4 > 1mm Most wires, screws, etc.
5 Dust protected Ingress of dust is not entirely prevented, but it must not enter in sufficient quantity to interfere with the satisfactory operation of the equipment; complete protection against contact.
6 Dust tight No ingress of dust; complete protection against contact.
Liquids protection

The level of protection against ingress of liquids is rated from zero to eight, with the following distinctions:

Liquids Protection Levels
Level Object Size Protected Against Effectiveness of Protection
0 Not protected No protection.
1 Dripping water Dripping water (vertically falling drops) shall have no harmful effect.
2 Dripping water when tilted up to 15 degrees Vertically dripping water shall have no harmful effect when the enclosure is tilted at an angle up to 15 degrees from its normal position.
3 Spraying water Water falling as a spray at any angle up to 60 degrees from the vertical shall have no harmful effect.
4 Splashing water Water splashing against the enclosure from any direction shall have no harmful effect.
5 Water jets Water projected by a nozzle (6.3mm) against enclosure from any direction shall have no harmful effects.
6 Powerful water jets Water projected in powerful jets (12.5 mm nozzle) against the enclosure from any direction shall have no harmful effects.
7 Immersion up to 1m Ingress of water in harmful quantity shall not be possible when the enclosure is immersed in water under defined conditions of pressure and time (up to 1m submersion).
8 Immersion beyond 1m The equipmen is suitable for continuous immersion in water under conditions which shall be specified by the manufacturer. Normally, this will mean that the equipment is hermetically sealed. However, with certain types of equipment, it can mean that water can enter but only in such a manner that it produces no harmful effects.
Finding the right IP rating

At Duff-Norton, our linear actuators have varying IP ratings depending on their intended use. Our products that are used in challenging environments, particularly our CMLA series, have a rating of IP66s. This means that they are dust tight and protected against powerful water jets, which is sufficient for most industrial environments.

If you would like advice on finding a linear actuator with the right level of foreign particles protection, get in touch with one of our application engineers who will be able to provide a free application analysis based on your requirements.

Duff-Norton

As a leading engineering manufacturer of reliable industrial lifting and positioning products, Duff-Norton is comprised of individuals with in-depth industry experience. Articles authored by Duff-Norton belong to a collection of blogs written by product and application experts throughout the organization.

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