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What is BS EN 60721-3-1:2018?

BS EN 60721-3-1:2018 is an internationally recognized standard that defines the classification and designation of environmental conditions for electrical and electronic equipment. It provides a common framework for determining the appropriate environmental conditions in which equipment can be operated, stored, and transported.

Key Requirements of BS EN 60721-3-1:2018

The standard outlines various parameters that need to be considered when classifying environmental conditions. These parameters include temperature, humidity, altitude, vibration, and corrosive environment. Let's delve deeper into each of these aspects:


Temperature is one of the critical factors affecting the performance and reliability of electrical and electronic equipment. BS EN 60721-3-1:2018 specifies several temperature classes that define the range within which the equipment can operate safely and effectively. The standard also considers the effects of rapid temperature changes, high temperatures, and low temperatures on the equipment.


Humidity plays a significant role in the behavior of electrical and electronic components. Excessive moisture can lead to condensation, insulation deterioration, and corrosion. The standard provides guidelines on acceptable humidity levels and how to protect equipment against moisture-related issues. It covers both relative humidity and moisture ingress protection.


Changes in altitude can affect the performance of electrical and electronic devices due to variations in air pressure and temperature. BS EN 60721-3-1:2018 defines different altitude categories and helps determine the right conditions for equipment operation at various elevations. This ensures that the equipment's functionality is not compromised when taken to higher or lower altitudes.


Vibration is a common environmental factor that affects the reliability and longevity of equipment. The standard provides guidance on how to assess vibration levels and their impact on equipment performance. It also outlines methods to minimize and mitigate vibration effects through appropriate design measures.

Corrosive Environment

Industrial settings or marine environments often expose electrical and electronic equipment to corrosive gases, liquids, or salt sprays. BS EN 60721-3-1:2018 identifies different corrosivity categories and suggests protective measures to prevent corrosion-related damage. This helps ensure the durability and functionality of equipment operating in such harsh environments.

Benefits of Adhering to BS EN 60721-3-1:2018

Following the guidelines outlined in BS EN 60721-3-1:2018 offers several advantages:

Enhanced Reliability: By considering environmental conditions during equipment design and operation, the risk of premature failures and breakdowns can be minimized.

Extended Lifespan: Appropriate classification of environmental conditions ensures that the equipment operates within its specified limits, which helps prolong its lifespan.

Improved Performance: Meeting the requirements of BS EN 60721-3-1:2018 helps maintain optimum performance, even under challenging environmental conditions.

Better Safety: Understanding environmental conditions helps identify potential hazards and apply adequate safety measures.

Compliance with International Standards: Adhering to BS EN 60721-3-1:2018 ensures compliance with globally accepted guidelines for environmental testing and classification.

Overall, BS EN 60721-3-1:2018 serves as a valuable resource for manufacturers, designers, and users of electrical and electronic equipment. By considering and addressing the environmental conditions in which the equipment operates, better performance, reliability, and safety can be achieved.


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