Results of Meeting of Working Group on Activities of Accredited Persons in Conformity Assessment of Explosive Atmospheres Equipment

March 13, 2019

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On February 26, a meeting of the working group on the activities of accredited persons in conformity assessment of explosive atmospheres equipment at the RusAccreditation Public Council, chaired by Alexander Zalogin, was held. More than 20 people attended the meeting, including representatives of the Federal Environmental, Industrial and Nuclear Supervision Service (Rostechnadzor), scientific and expert community, accredited organizations, manufacturers, and technical experts.

The meeting started with a discussion about a draft document “Information about the Testing Laboratory Equipment and the Staff Competence Status” intended as a guidebook to carry out conformity assessment/confirmation of testing laboratories (centers) in the area of work in explosive atmospheres. At the moment, the document stays advisory. However, the expert community suggested approving it as a mandatory document.

The second question to discuss was the necessity to ensure a single interpretation by accreditation experts and certification bodies of TR TS 012/2012 “On Safety of Equipment Intended for Use in Explosive Atmospheres” with reference to filling in the forms of conformity certificates in accordance with the following provisions of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission: No. 293 dated December 25, 2012 “On Unified Forms of Conformity Certificates and Declarations of Conformity to Technical Regulations of the Eurasian Economic Union and Rules of Their Drafting”, No. 154 dated November 15, 2016 “On Amending the Decision of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission No. 293 dated December 25, 2012”, and provisions of the Technical Regulations TR TS 012/2011 “On Safety of Equipment Intended for Use in Explosive Atmospheres”. It was noted that there was an ambiguity in interpretation of volume and content of information that should be indicated in the fields 8, 11, and 12 of a conformity certificate regarding the wording of the EEU Board Decision No. 154 for evidentiary materials: “other document” in field 8, “other documents” in field 11, “information about other documents” in field 12, without reference to the requirements of technical regulations.

The participants of the meeting noted the unacceptability of indicating such documents as TR TC 012/2011, Directive of the European Parliament and Council 2014/34/EC (ATEX), and general standards in field 8. The audience agreed that the field should indicate a document, under which the products had been produced, containing technical requirements for production and use, including lists of standards and drawings and an operating manual (organization standard, design specifications, design project). Representatives of manufacturers noted that field 11 of the certificate should not contain confidential technical information since it might lead to the disclosure of the codification principle of the manufacturer’s design documentation. Such information should be indicated only in assessment and test reports. In order to eliminate duplication of information, Alexey Kogan suggested entering in field 12 a reference to the list of standards applied on a voluntary basis in order to meet requirements of TR TS 012/2011 included in the mandatory annex to the conformity certificate in the description of the structure and explosive protection means.

Alexey Shatilo noted that standards for equipment intended for use in explosive atmospheres comprised both test methods and structure requirements, therefore, following a design documentation expertise, a structure expertise, and Ex-equipment tests, a testing laboratory, in fact, filed a report of assessment and testing.

The participants of the meeting supported the necessity to include into the scope of accreditation of certification bodies and testing laboratories (centers) the standards, in particular, the international ones, not included in the list related to TR TS 012/2011 (for assessment of innovative products), and test reports within the certification system of the International Electrotechnical Commission, IECEx.

The participants listened to the report of technical expert Yury Burov on challenges in testing equipment designed for production and installation (large dimensions or weight) on site of installation or production (Paragraph 6 of Article 5 of TR TS 012/2011 on carrying out temporary works by testing laboratories). In order to develop a clarifying document, it was decided to create a special subgroup at the working group chaired by Alexey Shatilo.

During a discussion about harmonization of forms and content of reports of assessment and testing of equipment intended for use in explosive atmospheres, the participants supported the suggestion of Deputy Head of the Department for Supervision in Coal Industry of Rostechnadzor Sergey Myasnikov about the need to develop unified mandatory forms of assessment and testing reports under all standards included in lists of standards, the voluntary compliance to which ensures one’s meeting requirements of TR TS 012/2011, containing rules and methods of tests and measurements required for using and meeting the requirements of the said technical regulation.

The participants of the meeting supported the suggestion of Alexander Zalogin about the development of a competency matrix of technical experts included in the Register to ensure their participation in assessment and provide for the procedure of their appointment to expert groups.

The meeting was concluded with an intensive discussion about Ex-marking of Ex-equipment and Ex-facilities consisting of both electrical and non-electrical equipment.

The next meeting of the working group on the activities of accredited persons in conformity assessment of explosive atmospheres equipment at the RusAccreditation Public Council is planned for the second quarter of 2019. The minutes of the meeting reflecting all the matters discussed and decisions made will soon be available in the working group section.