FLIR IR Windows for Thermal Cameras
Statistically, most Arc Flash danger occurs while personnel are working close to electrical panels with the panel door opened. Although the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has established the NFPA 70E CAT Safety Ratings’ Standard, which established safety workplace regulations for clothing and safety personal protection equipment (see below table), Thermal Windows assist in meeting compliance while maintaining personnel safety and continuing plant operations without interruption. This certainly can be thought of as meeting compliance requirements for safety without compromising equipment or personnel. We eliminate much risk of a hazardous condition when utilizing a Thermal Window as part of the installation.
IR windows allow thermal cameras to be used for safer electrical inspections while reducing exposure to hazards and personnel danger. As stated in NFPA 70E, the Electrical Safety Standard in the workplace, all electrical locations are categorized into CAT I, II, III, and IV. These Cat ratings classify the risk and hazard possibility for danger in all electrical locations. In order to be in Compliance with this standard, appropriate clothing and equipment, PPE-Personal Protection Equipment, is required in order to enter the selected area and proceed with any testing or evaluations. With the use of installed Thermal IR Windows, you will be able to perform safer and more efficient Low and High Voltage Electrical Inspections without exposing personnel to any increased risk.
The primary safety evaluation is done behind Electrical Equipment Room doors. Arc flash accidents can cost the user many millions of dollars. Increased insurance costs, personnel danger, loss of life, loss of production, damaged equipment, facility repair and replacement costs may only be some problems. The most important being danger and hazard to personnel. Agencies such as OSHA (or other occupational safety bodies around the world) may issue fines and punishments that may never be recoverable. IR windows add an extra level of protection in order to avoid the tragedy of harm to life and limb due to an arc-flash incident that may be preventable.
NFPA 70E: The standard for electrical safety in the workplace®. The following table and photo detail hazard locations according to the category (CAT) ratings per NFPA 70E. For more complete information, see our Buyers Guide.
There are many approval agencies that have tested and approved thermal windows for high current Arc Flash conditions. Please choose your camera and confirm that the specifications meet your desired equipment requirements.
Listed below are some key features that may be considered when continuing a thermal safety program and installing thermal windows.
- Minimizes time and cost of complying with NFPA 70E
- Allows Electrical Inspections in extremely hazardous environments
- Decreases risk of injury due to arc flash incidents
- Perform Visual Inspections on a regular basis
- Allows Thermal Inspections on a regular basis
- Category ratings remain intact following window installation
- Consider Optic Area verses available useable Thermal Window Area
- Variety of Sizes to match Thermal Cameras
- Ease of installation
- Consider both Indoor & Outdoor use
- Waterproof Housing meets IP65
FLUKE - Overview of thermal windows and their advantages. For more information view the data sheet.
It is important to understand that measurements outside of existing enclosures or equipment rooms may be an important option that may reduce personnel danger and save life. Using IR Windows with thermal cameras offers an opportunity to Electrical Inspection Teams as well as to Consultants, Engineers, Maintenance Personnel, Management and Facility Managers another opportunity to Measure and Evaluate without adding hazards when entering a dangerous electrical location.