ATEX is a short name for Directive 94/9/CE of the European Community, in force from the 1st of July 2003. The word ATEX is obtained from the fusion of the French wording: “ATmosphere EXplosible”. This Directive harmonizes the standards of the European Community members about the electro/mechanical machinery to be used in potentially explosive environment such as underground pits, petrochemical industries, power plants, food production plants, woodworking plants, breeding plants, greenhouses, industrial workshops.

An explosive atmosphere is a mixture of air and combustible gases, vapours, fumes or dusts under atmospheric conditions where combustion rapidly expands itself (explosion) after ignition.

The application of the ATEX Directive comprehends all the machines that are going to be installed within the European Community, in potentially explosive environments.

The ATEX 94/9/CE European Directive classifies the hazardous areas depending
on the kind of dangerous substances:
G Gas
D Dust
GD Gas-Dust

The ATEX Directive identifies the European certified bodies that are able to examine the documentation, to carry out testing and checking, to file the technical documents and to release the
certification for the equipment to be used in hazardous areas. Maico Italia applied to IMQ (Italian institute for Quality)to voluntarily certify the ATEX models of its own production and obtained a certificate which guarantee its conformity to EN 14986.

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