Pepperl+Fuchs Blog

What Does the IP Rating on an Industrial Sensor Data Sheet Indicate?

Posted by Sean Miller on Tue, Dec 03, 2013

How do you use this rating to select a sensor?

If you have ever looked at all the data sheet specifications listed for a Pepperl+Fuchs industrial sensor, typically you will see a section labeled “protection degree” under the mechanical specifications section. This rating defines how well the sensor will be protected from contact with dust and water.

IP Ratings for industrial sensorsThe IP rating has two numbers located in the model name. The first number designates the level of protection against physical contact and solid material getting inside the sensor.

This number is based on a scale of 0 to 6 with 0 having no protection and 6 being the highest level of protection.

A piece of equipment with an IP rating of 00 would be something similar to a raw circuit board or exposed electronic circuit such as a motherboard in a computer. Most final products from Pepperl+Fuchs have some form of protection. Most recent sensor models have a rating of 6 for protection against contact.

The second number designates the device’s protection against liquids coming into contact with the inside of the sensor. The lowest level of protection is 0, which is not helpful if water is present. The highest rating, for continuous use in water to a certain depth and consistent temperature, is 8.

Level 9 is rated for protection against high-pressure and high-temperature washdown environments. The IP69K does not carry the same waterproof rating as 8. Some of our sensors, such as the NMB5-18GM have an IP67/IP69K rating, so it carries the water resistance of IP67 and also the washdown rating, but is not intended for use when completely submerged in liquids.

To give you a better idea of what these ratings mean, here’s how our devices are tested to achieve an IP67, IP68, or IP69K rating. For a device to earn an IP67 protection degree, the unit is submerged in water at a depth of 1 meter for a period of 30 minutes. This test takes place at room temperature. If the sensor passes, the sensor is given a rating of IP67.

For a sensor to earn the IP68 protection degree, it must remain sealed under the same test conditions as an IP67 model, but for 24 hours instead of 30 minutes.

The IP69K test involves the sensor being tested against water fired from high-pressure nozzles with a force of 1450 Psi at high temperatures reaching 80 °C. If the sensor can resist this water ingress, it can carry an IP69K degree of protection.

Applications requiring an IP69K rating involve areas that see hot, high-pressure water such as in a car wash or food processing facility.

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Topics: Terminology, Applications

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