Ingress Protection (IP) in electric engineering

During qualification of Pharmaceutical equipment electrical verification many times we came across a terminology e.g. IP65, 68 etc.

The IP stands here as International Protection Marking sometimes interpreted as Ingress Protection Marking, classifies and rates the degree of protection provided against intrusion (body parts such as hands and fingers), dust, accidental contact, and water by mechanical casings and electrical enclosures.

The IP rating normally has two (or three) numbers:

  1. Protection from solid objects or materials
  2. Protection from liquids (water)
  3. Protection against mechanical impacts (commonly omitted, the third number is not a part of IEC 60529)
  IP First number – Protection against solid objects   IP Second number – Protection against liquids  
0 No special protection No protection
1 Protected against solid objects over 50 mm, e.g. accidental touch by persons hands Protection against vertically falling drops of water e.g. condensation
2 Protected against solid objects over 12 mm, e.g. persons fingers Protection against direct sprays of water up to 15o from the vertical
3 Protected against solid objects over 2.5 mm (tools and wires) Protected against direct sprays of water up to 60o from the vertical
4 Protected against solid objects over 1 mm (tools, wires, and small wires) Protection against water sprayed from all directions – limited ingress permitted
5 Protected against dust limited ingress (no harmful deposit) Protected against low pressure jets of water from all directions – limited ingress
6 Totally protected against dust Protected against temporary flooding of water, e.g. for use on ship decks – limited ingress permitted
7 —— Protected against the effect of immersion between 15 cm and 1 m
8 —— Protects against long periods of immersion under pressure

Example – IP Rating

With the IP rating IP 68, 6 describes the level of protection from solid objects and 8 describes the level of protection from liquids.

IP Third number – Protection against mechanical impacts (commonly omitted, the third number is not a part of IEC 60529)

0 No protection
1 Protects against impact of 0.225 joule
(e.g. 150 g weight falling from 15 cm height)
2 Protected against impact of 0.375 joule 
(e.g. 250 g weight falling from 15 cm height)
3 Protected against impact of 0.5 joule 
(e.g. 250 g weight falling from 20 cm height)
4 Protected against impact of 2.0 joule 
(e.g. 500 g weight falling from 40 cm height)
5 Protected against impact of 6.0 joule 
(e.g. 1.5 kg weight falling from 40 cm height)
6 Protected against impact of 20.0 joule 
(e.g. 5 kg weight falling from 40 cm height)
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