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IP Ratings Overview

By ·Categories: Manufacturing, Security·Published On: December 23rd, 2013·2.7 min read·
 A Logic Supply customer took it upon themselves to test the IP65 rating of the 17″ Intel Core i5 IP65 Fanless Panel PC. Dust Free? Check. Resists Water Spray? Check!

IP ratings get tossed around pretty frequently. IP20, IP65,  and the like are common, but what does they mean? Lets take a quick look.

The IP rating system

IP is short for Ingress Protection and is a rating of how resistant to the intrusion of foreign particles an enclosure (In PCs, thats the case) is. Each digit following has a directed correlation to a level of resistance primarily against dust and water.  The first digit –IP(6)5– relates to dust. The bigger the number, the smallest the particulate. As you can see below, a 6 is “Dust Tight.” The second digit –IP6(5)– pertains to Water. The higher the rating, the more water resistant a computer is. In this situation, an IP65 rated case is dust tight and protected from spray.

The IP Chart

Solid Object Protection
1st DigitDescriptionPractical Definition
0No protectionNo protection
1Protection from objects >50mmAny large surface of the body, such as the back of a hand, but no protection against deliberate contact with a body part
2Protection from objects >12mmFingers or other similarly sized objections
3Protection from objects >2.5mmCables, Tools, Etc
4Protection from objects >1.0mmNails, Screws and most wire
5Dust protectedNot totally sealed, but resistant to nearly all incidental dust and ingress
6Dust-tightNo ingress of dust
Liquid Protection
2nd DigitDescriptionPractical Definition
0Non-protectedNo protection
1Protection from dripping waterVertically falling as drops (Dripping Water)
2Protection from dripping water when tilted up to 15ºVertically falling as drops at any angle up to 15º from its normal position
3Protection from spraying waterWater falling as a spray angles up to 60º from its normal position
4Protection from splashing waterWater splashed from any direction
5Protection from water jetsWater projected from a nozzle from any direction
6Protection from heavy seasWater from heavy open water or water projected in powerful jets
7Protection from immersion (Up to 1M)Immersion in water up to 1M for a limited time
8Protection from submersion (Beyond 1M)Continuous submersion in water, even exceeding 1M

*IP Chart is based on IP Code page by Wikipedia

IP in Action

Whether it is in meatpacking, laundromats, stone cutting or other liquid and particulate rich industrial and manufacturing environments, IP ratings have become an easy short hand for how a PC will manage the stress and ingress. More and more industries  like food processing or fracking are finding the benefits of “Set and Forget” computing, even when facilities are regularly exposed to water.

The Take Away

If you are looking for an IP rated solution, it is easy to misjudge your environment’s needs. Too little, and your system is likely have an ingress of your particulate or liquid that will cause your computers to fail. Too much and you are over engineering and costing your company money.  If you need a consultation on the dust, water, or other ingress concerns in your environment, contact one of Logic Supply’s engineers to find the solution that works for you.

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About the Author: John Donoghue

A former Content Manager for OnLogic, John has a diverse background in technology and writing, and enjoys the opportunity to bring those two passions together. He has a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from Saint Michael's College and loves to tinker - be it with photography, technology or the great American novel.
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