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Cooper Crouse-Hinds and Thermal Designs are working together to provide the oil, gas and petrochemical industry with a fireproof enclosure that protects critical electrical control components.

The enclosure will protect the components from fires in up to 1,093C temperatures for 30 minutes, while the internal temperature of the enclosure does not exceed 87C.

They are based on Cooper Crouse-Hinds’ 316 stainless-steel STB enclosure (600mm x 400mm x 220mm) that has been treated externally with Thermal Designs’ K-Mass fire-resistant coating.

K-Mass is an intumescent, moulded-on protective coating that is certified to UL 1709.

Upon exposure to fire, the material begins to intumesce (expand rapidly) in response to heat by beginning a process of evaporative cooling and charring on the surface of the coating.

The surface char deepens in successive layers filling voids, insulating the critical equipment within the enclosure, cooling and reflecting the heat back into the fire.

This process continues until the fire is extinguished or the material is consumed.

In the presence of heat, K-Mass expands to many times its original size.

This pyrolytic reaction shields wire insulation, solder connections, circuit boards, terminal blocks, relays and metallurgy, enabling critical control components to continue operating during the fire.

The STB enclosure from Cooper Crouse-Hinds is an Atex-certified heavy-duty junction box solution that is fully compliant with the impact, thermal and ingress protection requirements of EN50014.

The STB is available in a wide range of sizes to meet a diverse range of applications.

Custom fittings are available such as cable glands, breather drains and blanking plugs.

Certified components such as instrument transmitters, fieldbus modules can also be fitted to provide customers with a fully certified solution.

Andrew Bragg, general manager at Thermal Designs, said: ‘For end users, installers and EPC contractors, the fireproof enclosure is a very compact solution for onshore and offshore oil and gas installations, where space is at a premium.

‘Directly coating the STB junction box with K-Mass means that the customer’s junction box doesn’t have to be housed in a separate enclosure.

‘This would take up valuable space and create further issues with regard to cabling and conduit.

‘If the end user requires an Atex-certified junction box that is fire-protected up to 2,000F with K-Mass, our single box solution is ideal,’ he added.

Cooper Crouse-Hinds

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