Don't panic – the lights are still on!
Emergency lighting systems for hazardous areas
Signs and lighting for rescue and escape routes, safety equipment, or safety-critical work areas must never be compromised under any circumstances as a result of interruptions to the regular power supply. This applies in particular to electrical operating areas and hazardous industrial sectors in which lighting failure could have disastrous consequences. Explosion protection specialist R. STAHL helps plant operators to set up complex emergency lighting systems – from planning to provision of all required components, in ex-protected versions.
Safety instead of darkness
Even though Germany is in a good position internationally when it comes to power failures, the average annual duration of a power failure in this country amounts to 13.3 minutes. The expansion of renewable energy sources may also lead to supply problems. To prevent lighting failures in volatile work areas and public buildings, autonomously supplied emergency lighting systems are indispensable. This applies all the more to safety-critical systems in countries with far less stable power supplies.
However, the installation of an uninterruptible power supply alone is by far not enough to meet the varied electrotechnical demands on emergency lighting systems, which are clearly set out in numerous national and international standards with regard to planning, building and operating. Construction laws, labour laws, and EU regulations on lighting technology and workplace lighting therefore contain normative specifications for both the design of emergency lighting systems – including their standby power supply, batteries, light fittings and switchgears – and for the functional tests that must be performed regularly.
Since, in emergencies, human life can depend on safety systems functioning correctly, and compliance with regulations can determine the extent of the operator's liability and possible insurance payouts, system operators should seek professional support from expert specialists when planning and setting up emergency lighting systems. This ensures that the system will be constructed according to applicable standards and accepted without issues, as well as yielding economic benefits thanks to speedy project implementation and a design process based on the user's needs.
Professional lighting design in all hazardous areas
R. STAHL, an internationally leading provider of explosion-protected components and systems, offers a range of services that includes comprehensive lighting design for industrial workplaces, including hazardous system areas. Implementation is performed according to occupational safety and general safety specifications corresponding to EN 12464 and EN 60598-2-22, as well as other applicable international standards.
To provide this service, R. STAHL initially uses customer data as a basis for creating a full 3D model of the relevant system and determines the optimum lighting system for the corresponding specific requirements. More precisely, this involves optimising the lighting system in terms of the required number of light fittings, even lighting for working areas and energy demand. R. STAHL also plans and installs group and central battery systems for supplying power to emergency lighting systems in hazardous areas. As a one-stop-supplier, the manufacturer's comprehensive range of emergency luminaires, escape route signs, battery systems, switching components and cabinets is more than sufficient to provide all the hardware required.
LED emergency lighting
Emergency lighting must ensure that work can continue in critical areas even if the mains power fails. The long-lasting LED emergency luminaires in the EXLUX series by R. STAHL guarantee luminous efficacy up to 129 lm/W with extremely low consumption. As well as the EXLUX 6009/4-type models for global use in Zone 1, the explosion protection specialist's 6409/4 series makes them the first supplier to offer cost-effective luminaire versions for Zones 2, 21 and 22. Thanks to their impact-resistant design according to IK10 and durable temperature resistance in a range from -30 °C to +60 °C, these light fittings are suitable for demanding operating conditions in the chemical, pharmaceutical, timber and foodstuffs industries, as well as the maritime sector. The foamed-in silicone gasket assures that the units comply with the high IP66/67 level of protection.
The series complies with all the requirements for emergency luminaires specified in EN 60598-2-22 and EN 61347-2-7 and ensures emergency lighting for up to three hours with a battery capacity of 7 Ah. To check readiness for operation, the devices carry out a weekly self-test and an annual automatic rated operating time test. Like all EXLUX variants, the emergency luminaires are also available with a DALI interface for digitally networked lighting management. The DALI function automatically switches off in a situation requiring emergency lighting.
LED escape route sign for Zone 1 and 2
For fail-safe escape route signage in Zones 1/21 and 2/22, R. STAHL offers a range of ex-protected model variants with or without escape route signs in a standardised, particularly narrow GRP housing. On the versions with escape route signs, the escape route icon is displayed on both sides of a clearly visible panel that hangs from the enclosure so that it is visible from all directions. This means that there is no need to install a second light fitting in corridors. The luminaires are also optionally available with an address module for a fail-safe emergency power supply using a central battery and with a DALI interface for network integration. As an alternative to the models in the 6102 series with a 110 to 240 V wide range input, R. STAHL's range includes battery-operated systems in the 6109 series, which guarantee an emergency supply lasting 90 minutes or 180 minutes.
For both display series, through additional optics, special light distribution systems can be implemented for escape route and door area lighting. Depending on the requirements, a range of installation options enable wall installation, ceiling installation or chain suspension. The enclosure, measuring just 100 mm tall, means that the systems are also suitable for low corridors and ceilings, or for integration in machines and systems. Since they are suitable for temperature ranges between -40 °C/-30 °C and +60 °C, and achieve specified service lives of 50,000 and 100,000 operating hours for the electronics and LEDs, respectively, the escape route signage light fittings are designed for long-lasting use under harsh environmental influences. The batteries used in the 6109 series last longer than five years.
Central battery systems from R. STAHL
In the event that the regular supply network fails, central battery systems must automatically switch to battery-operated emergency lighting mode and supply power to the emergency lighting system in hazardous and non-hazardous atmospheres from a safe area. Nowadays, new device technology, the continued development of conventional switching components, and the use of LED technology in emergency and rescue signage lighting make it possible to design extremely compact systems. As a result, the integration of emergency luminaires in general lighting systems and hazardous areas has become a common cost-saving measure. However, this efficient combination results in new requirements for programming the emergency luminaires and their switching with the general lighting system. R. STAHL has taken these broader requirements into account when designing its central battery systems in the WFZB series.
These emergency supply units, fitted with maintenance-free batteries that last for at least ten years, have been designed for industrial, commercial and public facilities of all sizes. While a central battery system can control up to 60 light fitting circuits, a central computing unit can network up to 64 central battery systems and connect them to an existing company network. The programming and (remote) monitoring of the central battery system can optionally be performed via their integrated LCD display, by a connected computer, or over the internet. Final circuits and connected emergency and rescue signage lighting can be addressed individually and are monitored at regular intervals. Additionally, the systems come with automatic monitoring of their functionality, batteries and voltage. An electronic inspection book records all operating conditions and events, and sends error messages to defined recipient lists by e-mail.
R. STAHL supplies central battery units in easy-to-service cabinets with hinged frames for 19" slots. Pluggable, freely programmable final circuit modules, redundant charging assemblies and bus-coupled temperature controllers for up to three values guarantee optimum reliability. On request, R. STAHL can configure the systems with additional interfaces, individually programmable escape route scenarios and further monitoring mechanisms.
Retrofittable complete solutions for all sectors
Even standard-compliant, legally safe planning of emergency lighting in public buildings requires advice from real experts. This is especially relevant, however, in the case of fail-safe lighting installations in industrial plants with hazardous areas, where outstanding technical expertise and correspondingly certified supply technology and explosion-protected lighting technology are required.
Comprehensive expert knowledge, a full, extensive range of LED light fittings and scalable central battery systems make R. STAHL the perfect partner in any industry for needs-based setup of standard-compliant emergency lighting systems in both hazardous and non-hazardous areas. Thanks to standardised constructions, functionalities and interfaces, these products make it simple to upgrade existing lighting systems to include state-of-the-art LED technology and digital network integration via DALI. System operators will reap the benefits of prompt project implementation and problem-free acceptance, as well as their tailor-made, cost-optimised emergency lighting network design.