Intrinsic Safety

General Gas Education

What is intrinsic safety?
Intrinsic safety is a design technique applied to electrical equipment and wiring for hazardous locations. The technique is based on limiting energy, electrical and thermal, to a level below that required to ignite a specific hazardous atmospheric mixture.

How is intrinsic safety defined?
Intrinsically safe equipment and wiring shall not be capable of releasing sufficient electrical or thermal energy under normal or abnormal conditions to cause ignition of a flammable or combustible atmospheric mixture in its most easily ignitable concentration.

instrinsic safety triangle

Who verifies intrinsic safety?
Equipment is tested and certified for intrinsic safety by independent third party agencies, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL), Canadian Standards Association (CSA), Factory Mutual Research Corporation (FM) and the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA). Independent testing ensures that your gas monitoring equipment is not only designed to be intrinsically safe, but meets all required standards for intrinsic safety.

Ref: R. Stahlís Intrinsic Safety Primer ©1988
National Electrical Code Article 504-2
Definition of a Intrinsically Safe Circuit © 1996
A circuit in which any spark or thermal effect is incapable of causing ignition of a flammable or combustible material in air under prescribed test conditions. 

TRAINING DISCLAIMER: These training videos and other training materials are intended to assist employers, workers, and others as they strive to improve workplace health and safety, by educating them on the practical use of Industrial Scientific® gas detection equipment. While we attempt to thoroughly address the specific topics, it is not possible to include discussion of everything in a presentation of this nature. Thus, this information must be understood as a tool to assist you in the operation of your Industrial Scientific® gas detection equipment. Finally, over time, Industrial Scientific Corporation may update the training materials and videos in light of new technology, information, or circumstances; to keep apprised of such developments, or to review a complete and up to date library of our training materials, you can visit our website at or download our app.